Escapades away from reality

In the hustle and bustle of “The Big Durian”, it is rather challenging to find a place of peace and serenity without having to drive hours and hours (most of which are spent stuck in acute traffic) to Puncak or Bandung! Thousands Islands, a far superior substitute for the many who prefer deep-sea diving and water sports over the quiet hills, is on the pricier side and is often overbooked and packed on the weekends and public holidays! After 10 years of living in Jakarta and circling the same old malls every weekend, visiting and feeding the animals of Taman Safari or grabbing a bite at an extravagant restaurant, it was high time to discover and explore the nooks and crannies of Indonesia and the wonders it had been hiding. It is no secret that Indonesia is an extraordinarily exotic location, gifted with beautiful white sand beaches, lush green mountains and incredible culture, yet many of these locations such as Raja Ampat, Flores or Nusa Tenggara remain extremely difficult to access and require you to shell out a fat portion of your paycheck!

If you’re looking for a weekend getaway, look no further! A short two-hour drive from Jakarta, Bogor has blessed us with a number of breathtaking waterfalls with crystal clear water and a chance to be surrounded by exuberant greenery and natural hot springs. a quick dip is assured to make you feel rejuvenated and pure, washing away the tiredness and fatigue of the week. I was fortunate enough to visit Curug ( The Sundanese word for waterfall) Cigamea and Curug Pangeran on a Friday morning during my summer break. Upon arrival, I noticed the magical aura of the sight, the lack of pollution, happy-go-lucky attitudes of the locals, the soothing sound of rushing water and of course the awe-inspiring plunge pools inviting me to jump in. For a small fee of 30.000 rupiah, I was privileged enough to experience the surreal beauty of nature without having to trek miles into dense forests or travel oceans away to an isolated island for an exorbitant fee.

IMG_9235

IMG_9009

IMG_8745

IMG_9231

FullSizeRender

IMG_8963

A few tips and tricks to ensure a safe and smooth journey:

  • Wear shoes/slippers which offer enough friction to prevent slipping on rocks or muddy paths
  • Avoid wearing a revealing swimsuit as it does not conform to the culture of Indonesians and may be seen as disrespectful.
  • Carry enough loose change (you may need this for vendors selling pop mie, tea, gorengan around the area, parking and entrance fees)
  • pack a change of clothes
  • a bottle of water is essential
  • a cap or sunglasses ( beware of the monkeys!)
  • a small but efficient medical kit along with sunscreen

It is an absolute necessity to keep this place clean and free of pollution as it is the home of countless locals who have resided here for ages and it is our responsibility to throw trash in its respective location (trash cans!!!) as a token of gratitude to the local community for being generous enough to share such a wonder with us.

My trip was enlightening in many ways and offered me a newfound love and admiration for the Mother Earth whom we take for granted so often. I truly hope your excursion is as rewarding as mine. Life in Jakarta may not be all sunshine and roses but it sure has its perks. Stay safe and happy waterfalling!

Advertisements

Tails of Romeo

IMG_2506

His piercing, charcoal orbs reminded me of a starless summer night as his gaze bore onto mine. He flashed me a lopsided grin, the same which I had grown to adore, revealing his razor sharp, pearly whites which would penetrate through your skin, causing a shooting and rather excruciating pain. Mischief oozed out of his eyes, providing evidence for all the shenanigans and catastrophes he refused to own up for.I ran my tan fingers through his velvety apricot coat decorated with specks of hazel as my thumbs untangled stubborn knots. His tiny, dark button nose seemed to always be moist as he sniffed through the rubble, eager to find remnants of last nights dinner. His drooping ears greatly resembled that of a rabbit and his shrivelled tail, which was almost non existent, bobbed up and down when he wagged his tail in a frenzy.  His serene presence comforted me through the toughest of times and his buoyant and comforting aura brought sunshine when the skies were the darkest shades of grey. Despite his sloppy wake up calls at 4am, his rampant sprints around the house at any given moment and his exasperating antics, my incomparable, tiny fur ball of happiness, has managed to occupy a rather large space in my small heart in a span of 6 months and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Unfair and Lovely

In a society that worships white, it has proven to be quite burdensome to exist as a 15 year old brown girl. Homemade concoctions and tubes of bleaching cream are regularly thrusted to you along with a piece of unwanted advice from a judgemental “aunty”. The tattered mindset preaching the correlation between being fair and beautiful is outdated yet is believed by the majority of the indian population praying to give birth to a baby with a milky white complexion.

It is heartbreaking to watch young girls and boys self destruct as they struggle to conform to the norms set by the society. Renowned personalities such as Shahrukh Khan regularly advertise the use of the popular “fair and lovely”, yet forget to mention the amount of photoshop used to lighten their skin for the commercial.

I wonder why beautiful indian models are much too often whitewashed as they grace the cover of so called progressive magazines such as vogue and Filmfare, as rather than spreading positivity and teaching us to love themselves, it destroys the self esteem of darker girls seeking acceptance in the prejudiced society we live in.  I wonder why melanin is spat at and looked upon in disdain, whereas in the west, millions are spent on tanning salons to obtain the caramel richness we brown girls possess. I wonder why girls on matrimonial sites emphasise on the colour of their skin rather than their accomplishments and I wonder why melanin is not considered magic like it should be.

 

 

hi!

Hi, my name is Samira, welcome to my blog.

I’m not extraordinary, neither a prodigy nor the next Einstein, however, I truly genuinely, strongly believe that I possess the power to change the world. Blogging has fascinated me endlessly, yet my old friend procrastination and his partner in crime, idleness, prevented me from creating my own.

Soon to be jammed with tons of photos, enthralling adventures, travel tales, and my shenanigans in the bustling metropolitan that is Jakarta, this blog serves as a safe space to capture my happiest moments, unfinished string of thoughts, ramblings concerning feminism, politics, art and everything in between, as well as my attempt at photography.

This blog will accompany me on my journey to contentment, bliss and success chronicling my failures as well as triumphs, documenting unforgettable memories and breathtaking experiences to share with the world.

If you’ve gotten this far, I must be doing something right. So sit back and enjoy the rollercoaster that is my life. All aboard!