Breezy Gili

Travel blogpost yay!!

A few months ago, I had the privileged to (finally) visit Indonesia. Specifically Lombok. I stayed for a week at Gili Trawangan (one of the three islands in Lombok) at Happy Cocoon. It was my first experience to get to indulge in nature on a daily basis during a trip. It was so nice to not worry about what to wear or how smelly my clothes would smell from being drenched in the rain (ha ha). Speaking of, it was rainy season when I visited, so I experienced a lot of rocky rides on the sea (as I had to ride on a boat to get to the island from the town, vice-versa) and constantly tripping on puddles and catching a mild cold by night (I have a weak immune system). That’s alright though, there were so many other things that I enjoyed about Gili that a little/lotta rain didn’t even matter. In fact, it was part of the fun too sometimes.

Therefore,  I present you a list of things I love about Gili, and parts of Lombok.             [FYI: This is the first ever I am making a list on this blog. I’ve just finished my semester in Uni and I’ve just found out I like writing lists *shock horror*]

  1. Mountains. Upon arrival, I was invited with a splash of rain that made Lombok looked gloomy and initially depressing. Though I do not hate rain, I do love some sunshine to perk things up especially after a flight – I’m not the best at flights either, unsurprisingly. However, it didn’t seem so depressing at all when I noticed how peaceful the place was when the van I rode in took us pass the city and introduced us to folds of mountains in the horizon. I. LOVE. MOUNTAINOUS VIEWS. Our driver took us to a run-down house that sat at the edge of a hill. We met with a view of the mountains meeting the sea. There’s just something so majestic and scenic about rows of mountains sitting on the horizon..calling out to me. GAH. Only Murakami would best explain how a mountain would create a strong sense of admiration in me. Sadly, I am no Murakami. Anyways, the view of the mountains in pictures I took of course do not justify its beauty. You can’t expect to know how good a song is just by looking at a sheet music right? Unless you have amazing talent then I applaud you. Okay, going back on track- Mountains. Yes, mountains. The view of the mountains placed beautifully across Lombok looked oh-so-magnifique especially from Gili trawangan. My favourite way to admire the mountains was from the boat ride to Gili. Every time I rode the boat to go to Gili, I fixated my eyes on how the mountains unfold from a near view to afar. Little things like that give me joy. Allah’s creations are truly lovely.
  2. Blue water. Need I say more? Who doesn’t love a sea of blue water? Quite literally. I got to snorkel twice in the shallow waters of Gili. Because the rain always came unpredictably, we couldn’t risk going to deeper water to snorkel. (Plus: In reality, half of us were untrained in water anyways ahahHahHAhH) The objective of the first snorkel was to look for the famous giant turtles that swim near the shore. Of course, rain had to come to the parade just when we were prepping ourselves in the water in the first 15 minutes. Because of the rain, the giant turtles escaped to deeper water so we didn’t get to swim with them 😦 Though we met some tiny ones instead so I wasn’t entirely dissappointed. The second snorkel took place a couple days after, at Pandawa resort. The resorts in Gili (such as Pandawa) are famous for the swings that suspend above water. I believe we snorkeled approximately for two hours. Yup there was some skin burn. “Jangantah pakai sunblock” I said to myself, dubious of the lack of capabilities and tolerance my skin can endure. Burn, it certainly did. The water was shallow and the tide was calm. I swam with cutesy little fishes and observed their corals. Understandably, the fishes swam for their lives. I would too if a giant alien was hovering around lol. Though after a couple of minutes trying my best to be still; some came out of hiding and swam around my hands. Then others in hiding would come out too, to continue their lives in their coral village and carry on with their fishy duties *hehe*. Observing their corals and “hanging out”/”floating about” with the fishes; that was when I felt the most solitude during the whole trip. Ah, the little things.
  3. The Locals. Although my Bahasa wasn’t great, the important thing is I tried! LOL. So I tried to talk in Bahasa with the locals, some understood me, some just pretended to *enter crying laughing emoji*. Most of the locals were very friendly to us. I had the chance to talk to the workers at the homestay and other places where we bought souvenirs and had our massages. Though there was that unforgettable time when my sister and I encountered the heaviest rain in Gili when we were on our way to the homestay. For some reason, the unexpected heavy rain got my sister and I laughing hysterically, while stumbling into deep puddles and making pitstops under small rooftops in front of people’s houses; we must’ve looked like crazy fools. We then took shelter at one of the small convenient shops before reaching the homestay. The lady, who I assumed, owned the shop, told us to wait until the rain would calm down. Though we were afraid that the road to the homestay would get flooded, we told her that we wanted to go as soon as possible. After several times of insisting us to stay and us insisting her that we want to go (lol), she told one of her workers in the shop to accompany us to the homestay. The rain suddenly calmed a bit, we then told her that we’d be fine, hence we declined and thanked her. As we make our way to the homestay, several half-naked kids were dancing and enjoying themselves in the rain. We screamed HAI and they screamed back (note: screaming due to loud and heavy rain). They asked us where we wanted to go (we must’ve looked lost), and they led us the way. We thanked them by taking pictures with them and waved goodbye to let them continue playing in the rain. Such sweet kids.
  4. Gili Horses. There’s not much to say on this except that I love horses. There were many horses with carriages in Gili. As there were no cars to transport people around the island, bikes and horse-drawn carriages were used instead. Horses pictures will be down below hehe.
  5. Honorable mention: The Food! Those who visit Gili/Lombok has to try the food, especially seafood. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to eat the lobster there, though everything else is so good & relatively affordable 🙂

THAT WAS A DESCRIPTIVE LIST AYE? Okay let’s move on to the pictures. Thank you for reading!! If you’re only here to look at the pictures, that’s okay too. Do comment below if you like this blogpost, and if you like to see more of these kinds of narrative/descriptive posts of my travels. The camera I used was FujiFilm x100T. Enjoy! 🙂

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You’ve come to the end of the post! If you can’t tell, there are no pictures at night. It rained quite a lot especially at night, so I didn’t want to damage the camera.

Thanks for dropping by 🙂

Tinah x

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Updates & Groovy Tunes

Hola! I hope whoever’s reading is doing well and that you’ve had a good day.

Wow this blog has been dormant for so long. Though I told myself to put in more dedication to posting so come visit once in a while! 🙂

I’ve just finished my final exams for my degree in uni and the weights on my shoulder have never felt lighter. I know that soon enough I might start fretting over job applications *roll eyes* and thinking of agendas for future plans (super mature) so I’m enjoying this freedom as it lasts. Trust me when I say I am no stranger to self-pressure, so for the mean time when my anxieties of getting a job have not kicked in (relatively speaking), I’m going to enjoy my cookie monster from Pan n Wok, listen to some good music, cuddle with my smelly cat Milo and re-read some of my old favourite and dusty books. Yes, sounds like a plan. Maybe I should paint some too. And practice my sewing skills. Okay, now I’m starting to sound like an old woman planning her days in the retirement home. Yikes..where did all my youth go.

More exciting news: I am officially an auntie to a beautiful baby boy. He was born a few days before I sat for my first exam paper. My first time meeting him involved mostly me poking his cheeks, feeling amazed at how soft his skin feels. AND HE SMELLS INCREDIBLE. He is always sleeping, and I’ve been told that’s normal. I know nothing of what babies do and what I should say to it..him..I’m still getting used to referencing him as a person too. A very tiny person. How can something so human be so tiny? *squeaks in excitement* I don’t know what to anticipate being an aunt; I was never that great with kids, though I’m not the worse at it either. I have yet to learn the responsibilities of being an aunt and a better sister to my brother and sister-in law. They’ll surely be great parents though, I just know it. Insya Allah.

Anyhoo, I thought I’d share some ~tunes~ with you guys. These are some of my new and old favourites, and they were the songs I particularly enjoyed during my last travel. Oh yes, and that travel blog post is coming soon too (sneak peek below). So stay tuned, get some tea and entertain yourself with some music.

SNEAK PEEK: 

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Have a great weekend everyone, see you in the next post!

 Tinah

Kingdom Of Wonder

Ola netizens! This year’s summer break have allowed me to venture around the Kingdom of Wonder: Cambodia. My brother generously lent me his camera, the beautifully-built X100T Fujifilm.

We visited Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, which was about 30-45 minutes flight away from each other.

*Warning: I did not expect to write as much as I did below, so do skip the texts if you want to view the snaps only.*

Phnom Penh is the capital city of Cambodia, where people on scooters and cars are constantly practicing their honking habits. Really though, they take road rage and driving discipline to a whole different level than of what I am used to (although they seem to be quite calm still despite me calling it “road rage”). The main transportation we utilized going around the city was mostly by tuk tuk, which gave me a lot of opportunities to capture and witness the streets of Phnom Penh, and exchange glances with the people who devoted their lives on the streets to go about their daily regime. We briefly visited the Royal Palace and Wat Phnom, also ‘tuk tuk’-ed passed by the Independent Monument and Wat Ounalom. To talk of the history behind these attractions are not my fortè, so I apologize for not being more informative on the sights..there is always google right? Anyways, after spending about four days in Phnom Penh, we took a plane to Siem Reap.

Siem Reap, is where the renowned Angkor Wat is located. I was told that it was acknowledged to be one of the wonders of the world, and after visiting the place, there are no doubts on how it achieved this grand recognition. Angkor Archaeological Park not only consisted of the Angkor Wat, the place were pervaded with other historical temples, namely the Bayon Temple and Ta Phrom; these were the other two main temples we visited in the area. Although, there are so many other temples in the Park, as the place was massive (it used to be a city after all). We started off with sacrificing our sleep hours to an early morning trip to the park to engross ourselves with the view of the sun rising over the horizon where the Angkor Wat stands. Some of you who follow my instagram and have read the caption on the Angkor Wat would know that this was my very first sunrise…ever. So that was a pretty grand moment for me. We journeyed to the Bayon Temple, after a light breakfast, where we engulfed ourselves with the numerous and effortlessly sculptured Buddha heads, and beautiful artwork engraved on the walls that tells stories of the lives the settlers used to lead. The last temple, Ta Phrom, had towering trees with monumental roots that gripped around the walls of the temple. It is also known as one of the most popular temples as Angelina Jolie acted a scene there in one of her movies.

Of course, not all trips leave so many fond memories without having to witness relatively negative ones. During this trip, I get to realize a lot of how unsettling it can be being a passer by of those who live their lives in obvious hardships. I do not claim to have such an easy life, but it was one of the times when I truly felt grateful and blessed as I can’t help but compare.

However, on the whole, I had a nice and quite relaxing time in Cambodia, and I’m really glad to have had this chance to explore the places that I did go to with the people I love.

I think I ought to stop my writing here as this post is getting pretty(/too) lengthy for some of you who are actually reading this.

Enjoy these snaps!! I surely had fun taking them 🙂

p.s. I might also upload a video of my journey, stay tuned!

Phnom Penh

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Siem Reap

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Another Venice

In the light of the first project I was involved in, under a community outreach organization, I had a feasibly good chance to capture few snaps of the endeavor. The project focused on an area in Kampung Ayer and it allowed us to roam about, relatively to the degree of the heat for most of the time; and here are some of the many scenes I have managed to savor to my keeping.

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Marvelous Manchester

Not the most symmetrically, artsy pictures out there, but I actually like this collection for its imperfections, as a lot of these captures are more accidental than intentional. I guess that’s one of my favourite reasons why photography can be so fulfilling; catching something you didn’t plan to at the first place. And actually ending up kinda liking it. Surprises like these are always nice.

These snaps were taken last summer. Yes, I know I’m very late with the publishing and everything, but that’s how I like my pictures to be sometimes..kept and thought about personally first until I decide which ones I’d like the world to see, well at least to a few people that ever visits this blog.

Anyways, Manchester has always been a good city to visit, I’m glad I got to spend time in this city with my family again.

Enjoy these snaps!

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A Dublin day.

My brother told us how it was mandatory to visit Dublin if we were ever around Ireland. So we packed our wallets and cameras, and hopped on the morning train to Dublin from Belfast city.

The very first thing I noticed about Dublin was the vast amount of crowds. The only place that wasn’t as crowded as much were the park where we fed the pigeons with Cheetos and cream crackers.

Pretty decent place to just walk around, and shopped a little. Though the sales were crazy, I only bought a pair of sneakers….and fruits. I love fruits.

I could’ve taken more pictures, but considering the limited time we had to stroll around, I was too caught up with spending quality time with my family.

Anyways, enjoy.

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Belfast, Northern Ireland

I had a great view of the mountains from my room where I stayed in Belfast. At night, the houses that lit the mountains’ ground acted like stars, it was without a doubt, a worthwhile stay. Other than touring along the coasts of County Antrim and basking in the beauty of the mountainous and oceanic scenery that I swear were made for postcards, I toured around the city several times too. Belfast is truly a beautiful place. Considering that it’s not as fast-paced as the other cities I’ve been to, there was just a somewhat calming atmosphere Belfast managed fulfill that I ended up forgetting how hectic my days were.

The Titanic Belfast was an architectural art work overall. From the sharp and rugged surface that represented the roughness of ice to the open yard where the poles stood at the back of the building, it lived up to its reputation.

A+ for Belfast!!

Truly a blessing to get to travel to this place.

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The Giant Adventure

Hey guys! Here are some of the pictures I chose to edit and to post in this blog. These are the ones I took when I went to the Giant’s Causeway, which is outside of Belfast city and at the coast of Northern Ireland. The tour bus started off from the city and made its way through the most scenic/picturesque/Game of Thrones-esque surroundings I have ever laid eyes on. We made a few stops along the way, as the journey was about 4 hours. My favourite pit stop before the Giant’s Causeway was Carrick-a-Rede and Larrybane, where the ocean was as “blue as the overhanging heaven” (P.B Shelley). The Giant’s Causeway was as amazing too, of course – with its dark blue ocean and distinctive interlocking column of basalt rocks that make up the coast. The place acquired its name from the mythical story of the rivalry between Finn and Benandonner. If you’re curious about it, you can check it out here : http://www.causewaycoastandglens.com/Folklore-and-Legend.T1153.aspx
Anyway, all stories aside, enjoy the view 🙂

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5 cities.

Even though the long flight to UK was never a favourite, the adventures me and my family had were worth while. We visited 5 cities for this trip, and every city gave me different opportunities of ways and angles of taking pictures. A lot of patience, awkward body poses and being constantly left behind were achieved in the process of taking the pictures I wanted to take. Not all of them came out as I wanted them to be and as far as pictures could show you; they do not justify on all the beauty I have witnessed. Although, some of the pictures I am happy with will be posted in this blog. In this post, the pictures are, somehwat a ‘sneak peek’ of what sort of things I will be posting in the near future. I hope you all know that I do not claim myself as a pro photographer and I do not own fancy smancy cameras (just yet), I mostly use my phone and digital camera. So these pictures you will see are just pictures I liked taking and editing. The apps I used are vsco, afterlight and aviary. I hope ya’ll will have a lovely day/night.

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