Have already been in Bogor at my friend Laura's for a week. Working with her at ZSL (Zoological Society of London) meant that I struggled to find time to write this blog. And a weekend on a private island as well.
Laura lives in an old house of colonial style, in a neighbourhood which was apparently built by the Dutch when they had interests here (not read that bit of lonely planet yet). She shares with a mix of foreigners, all English apart from one Canadian, who also work for ONGs in conservation or environment.
Evening entertainment consists of restaurants, the gym, and locals seem to love malls. The weather is hot of course, around 35 every day, but Bogor is known as the rain city, and we have had rain most days for a couple of hours. This cools everything down, and explains why this is a favourite weekend destination for Jakartians (not sure that's a real word).
Laura and 2 of her housemates are on a detox diet which I have joined. This means no wheat, no dairy apart from live yoghurt, no potatoes, but thankfully rice is allowed. We have decided that clear spirits were allowed at the weekend. In a country where everything is fried, this diet is actually welcome, and I seem to have lost a bit of weight.
Joined the gym thanks to Laura's flatmate Abi. This a very social event for Indonesians. They also do seem to have a different approach to exercise, as if they were actively ensuring they do not sweat, so mainly walk on trade mills. I think they look at my red wet face in disgust...
This week-end we escaped the traffic by going to an island 1.5hrs by boat from Jakarta. Kotok island is part of the 1000 islands, although it is said there are not that many. Not sure anyone has bothered counting them. It is a one hotel resort, and we were only 30 guests overnight. Early start as Jakarta is around 2 hrs from bogor with traffic, with boat departing at 8am. The island is prabably 1km by 400m. Snorkelling is very good, with many corals, fishes and even turtles. The island is in a maritime parc, so protected and it's great to see the coral regrowing where it was damaged. Back in Bogor on sunday night, we went straight to a sushi restaurant to end a great relaxing weekend. My new year resolution of not eating fish does not apply in South East Asia.
Looking forward to a massage, the Avengers 3D (hopefully subtitled and not dubbed), and a night out in Jakarta this coming weekend.
No fact of the day. I almost fell off the trade mill to the amusement of my gym buddy...