10 Indonesian Adventures

Time for another top 10 post.


So, I bring you…10 Indonesian adventures

I will never forget. (Pardon me in advance if some of these are TMI. I had some solicited help from a certain someone in my house. :)) Oh, and I didn’t even attempt to number these in any particular order. Tobin said it best…they were all adventures for their own reasons.

And even though some of them weren’t fun at the time, I smile now. :)

10. Using a Squatty Potty. Some would argue that this

is an actual adventure.

I beg to differ…seeing as the first time made me cry. I will spare you the details, only to tell

you that I eventually figured it out and came to the point where I preferred them over regular toilets.

9. Surfing at Kuta Beach. Surfing was always on my Bucket List but kind of one of those things I was afraid to try. But in April 2007, I took a trip to Bali with some friends…and somehow I found the guts to go out, find a surf instructor, and rent a board. Not only did I stand up on the board and actually ride it to shore, I was hooked immediately. I still love to surf…I just need an ocean now. :)

8. Bukit Lawang. In 2007 I took a trip with some friends to Bukit Lawang in the jungles of Sumatra.

We went on an eight hour hike to see the orangutans in the preserve there and went white water “rafting”…in a raft made of a bunch of rubber inner tubes. It was fun…not necessarily something I’d do again but something everyone should do once if they get a chance. And the orangutans were pretty cool. :)

7. Being Jane. And while I was on the above trip

? I. just. had. to. be. Jane. Just once. I had always w anted to swing on

a vine, and our guide, though he thought I was crazy, very nicely went out and found me the perfect swinging apparatus.

6. Eating Octopus. While we were in Indonesia, Tobin and I loved eating sushi. (Because there, we could afford it!) We went with some friends to celebrate Tobin’s 30th birthday, and one of them pulled a plate of baby octopuses (octopi?) from the conveyer belt that went by the tables. I have to admit that I was really grossed out but eventually ate it. But really, only for bragging rights. :) Not something I’d eat again. (I can’t believe how long my hair is in this pic, either!)

5. Taking the Ferry to Singapore. This was an adventure in the worst way possible. Now, I can look back on this particular day and smile. Then? I thought I might die. Anyway, in an effort to save some money, we decided to take the ferry from Batam to Singapore before flying on to Thailand for our Christmas break.

No one warned me about what happens to people on a ferry who get extremely motion sick. Imagine…the most excruciating 60 minutes of your life spent heaving into a garbage can. While the boat goes up and down. And up and down. And up…and down. While all 200+ people in the room watched the extremely sick white girl, wondering if they should take pictures. (Some probably did.) Yeah. I was so sick that once I got off the boat? I laid down on the floor until the line for immigration was shorter. Worst morning EVER. (Oh, and quite obviously, this picture was taken BEFORE the ferry left.)

4. Climbing the Steps of Borobudur.

This was another item on my Bucket List. I couldn’t wait to see Borobudur, and it didn’t disappoint. I loved it…loved it…loved it. I want to go back again.

Anyone for a trip to Indonesi


3. Driving to the Beach. I did not take pictures of this. It is not worth remembering although I am extremely unlikely to forget it. I still have images of the many bus cepat…fast buses…speeding toward us. Each time I was sure we would be crushed…thankfully, each time I was wrong.

In general, drives to the beach were long and slow. One beach was 200 km from where we lived.

(I just made up that number, but I think it’s about right.) That equals about 124 miles…which took us anywhere from 6-8 hours.

Yeah, it was that slow. And full of dodging buses, trucks, motorbikes, carts, and pedestrians. Bonus points to my hubby for keeping us all alive on such trips.

2. Motorbike + Tidal Wave. You can read the full account here. It’s a good one. Let’s just say that for the three years we drove in Indonesia, we had a knack for getting caught in the rain more times than we can possibly count. And one time during our first year, we met a bus. Bus + two bules on motorbike + monstrous puddle = two very wet people + bus full of laughing passengers. Oh, memories.

1. Hiking Tangkuban Parahu in Flip Flops. One time when a friend was visiting, we decided to take her to the volcano about 45 minutes from our house. It was kind of a rainy, cold day there and we figured we’d just go, look around, take some pictures, and then head to the hot springs, which was the real reason we went up there in the first place. :) However, once we got there, we decided that we should hire a guide to show us around. We thought? That he would take us around the rim, point out a few things, and we’d be done.

Oh, no. Not at all. He took us on a “hike” down to the bottom of the volcano. We were all wearing flip flops. It was wet and muddy. And cold…well, cold for Indonesia. And the best part? We had to hike back up to the top…which re ally is

a story for another day. Now I can say I’ve hiked a volcano in flip flops. More bragging rights. :)

I heart adventures.

So thankful for the memories.



  1. Very. Very. VERY cool!!! Thanks for writing and allowing me to live vicariously through you. I’m not a traveling adventurer. AT ALL! So, this was too cool for words.

    My husband went fishing off the coast of Florida about 9 years ago, as soon as he lost sight of land, he was heaving over the side of the boat. Not my idea of fun!

    I’ve often thought of writing a post on my own personal bucket list.

    Oh and one more thing……you da WOman! *wink*

  2. We should both write out our bucket lists. Mine is still in my head. :) Thanks, my friend. 😉

  3. Alyssa Van Wormer says:

    Hey Mel! I remember that surfing lesson you got! You were pretty good at staying up! I also remember that long trip to the beach we took and all the scary driving, but Tobin did a great job! Yea!! Orangutans! That was a hard climb, but so many great memories. I don’t think I would do it again either :) Maybe the rafting….

  4. Way fun! Good luck going shoeless tomorrow!!

Speak Your Mind