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Yogyakarta, well, my first mission and most important things-to-do, there might be a lot of things to do, things, what an expression for experiences, inspirations, adventures, presents, life! – poor dear, Lonely Planet… have to admit, bought one, if you are traveling in a country like Indonesia, randomly covered with internet access and WIFI success – suckcess, if it is more than a modem connection or even equal, a travel guide is not that bad, just don´t trust it, take the recommandations as an advice, so you are not bored after, ending up at a place, adviced to be the opposite or there, not vanished like buildings, places or roads do, here in Asia. Still thanks for the adventure, Lonely Planet.
So, to keep on the phrasing, in Yogykarta my mission was not getting-around, my visa will be extended on the next day. Poor dear, Traveler, what is wrong, behave like it´s your first trip on the road. By the fact, that it´s not, maybe that´s the professionell way, not to get nervous, I will be fine, don´t worry, there is always another road to go, run or escape. By the way, you shouldn´t mess up with authorities in a country like Indonesia, I guess, sure about. Realizing that, too late, at the immigration office, at the entrance, a sign telling me NOT to enter with flip-flops, t-shirt or in shorts, looking down on me, asking myself, “Why? Why the hell I could be on that sign as a perfect example how not to show up at this place, headlined with EVEN NOT FOREIGNERS!. Stupid me. The officials at the entrance desk examine me from the bottom up, starring at an arrogant but questioning, apologizing and hope-gesturing face – like a cheeky dog, knowing exactly he is not allowed to shit in front of the door, but still maybe get the sausage – and pleading they gonna judge me as one of this “Stupid foreigners”. And act different. And they did. Unfriendly. Felt so ashamed, not rebelious at all or indifferent – Yes, I am a foreigner, so treat me as your guest with hospitality. If you want to get permission of authorities, you have to respect them like authorities, if you love the country or not. My best looking dog-face worked. Even though I didn´t print a evidence of my departure, cause I haven´t booked a flight yet. But they still handled my case, me and my stupid foreigner actor in a respectful manner. Tomorrow I will pick up my extension, hopefully, presenting my flight ticket. Means, I had to organize, plan my further trip, my next 30 days in Indonesia. Wasn´t happy about that, on an island like Java, huge, surprisable at every corner, with such a wide range of different places, characters and variety of choices you can make, it´s not a disadventure to stay independent, in your decisions.
So it was pretty clear, that I have to stay in Yogyakarta for at least 6 days. My longest stay until now on my travel through Java, from east to west. And I went prompt lazy, knowing, that this place can´t offer me a schedule for 5 days left. So what you gonna day with your laziness, or relaxation time, to call it in a more friendly way, after all that night trekking days. Surprisingly I got drunken the second night. Wobbling between a Classic Rock-Night – covering all kinds of rock classics and metal, and a Rock-Night, covers by a band called “Rescue – Trio Rockabilly”. First, after a couple of beers, I left the Rockabilly-Night, can´t stand that sound anymore, even the indonesian members of the band appeared quite likeable. But, didn´t want to miss the Classic-Rock, missing concerts, live metal acts, even if it´s classic rock, don´t mind, just give me some heavy! Lucifer´s is a tiny bar at the end of the popular backpacker road here in Yogyakarta, the Classic-Rock more popular for locals. And it was a jukebox, two fat books like bibles stored on a music stand. On tiny blue papers the band received the wishes of the audience, from Queen to Motörhead, no breaks between the songs at all, they just kept on blasting the bar. Me, sitting at the bar, of course, smiling. – Why all bartenders in Asia look like hookers? What a mindblow. Three foreigners enjoyed the stage. Three men. Looking like customers. Whatever. Age between mid-thirties and retirement. The retired one, hoary but still in a good shape, entered the bar like the main act. Fortunately he was not. Shaking hands of the band members, disturbing their show. They shaked back, friendly, but beyond you could spot an idea of shaking his arrogant appearance bloody. He turned to the audience and waved his arms, like a kingdom´s fool. No waving in return, just bored glances. He passed, hugged and greeted, “Thank you. Thanks, man.” Hahaha, what??? What a needy jackass, turned around, away, hoping that he is not searching for my company, for whatever his plan was. He kept on his show, talking indonesian and english, maybe for my attendance on his performance. “No english rock songs, we are in Indonesia, play indonesian songs!” – not wrong I admit, gesturing emphatic with his whole body, bashing the bar desk. An old version of Glenn Danzig. Two songs later his friend showed up. In a general way. So Glenn was supplied with his one-man fan club. Younger, blond, his appearance crushed by laziness, by the laziness of an abroad living pre-looser. The third one was more a classy. Suited in black, no golden necklace, the golden watch I suppose was enough indication. A mix of Frank Sinatra and an east-european criminal, who learned his lessons on the streets and now teaches. A smart smile, but not friendly by heart. With two pretty girls in his tow. Breaking the law. Best cover I heard so far. My first one. But the best part of the Lucifer´s night was, just as the band took his half-time, only the mumble of the drunken audience and the thanksgiving of beer bottles clearing the smoky shading, a women with a baby, carrying to her chest, entered the bar straight to the fan club and shouting on him in indonesian, in an obvious and not amused way. He was on stage now, Glenn took place behind a curtain, figuratively. Maybe he knew, just one wrong move and the audience would turn into a furious host. So he left, following his wife. Me, even more smiling. The rest of the night I hardly remember, drinking with the members of Rescue, tattoo artists and a manager you kept asking me if I really enjoyed the live act, because this kind of music is rare and not very popular in Indonesia.
Bad hang over day.
Choped down under the fan at sunrise, woke up at noon. Decided, still drunken, feared of wasting my time with one more night at the bars, to book the trekk on Mount Merapi. My second reason I came here for. Realizing, after the last drop of beer left my conciousness and the hang over was raming against, that was a worst decision, but I gotta go. Taping my blisters, drinking liters of water, soyamilk and coffee. Taking naps. And doing my work-out, a powerless try to sweat out the bill. At 10 p.m. the driver picked me up, three hours later the trekk started. I don´t know how, but I reached the top for sunrise, sober. Climbing up at night has one advantage, you never see how far you have to go, just keep on going, up, up and up, step by step. Volcano number four presenting at ascend no differences in comparison. Tough work, ashy, cursing the messy ashtray of the last night, especially at the end, the last part, on sandy boulders, sinking, taking two steps for one. On the top you always get the reward. Cold, windy, freezing wet of sweat. Impressed. Sunrise, well yes, its a sunrise, like sunsets at the beach, getting used of it. But sitting on the edge of a crater, of an active volcano, forecasted to erupt again in the next two years, sulphuric air, again, clouds being whiped by the altitude´s rough reign, feels just fucking amazing. Not small, not humble, but weak, weak and fractured, like the crater´s edge. Feeling strong inside.
As I returned to the guesthouse, sleep was my day. And the next day. Missing the city of Yogyakarta, the corners and backyards, the temples and royality. It´s a kingdom´s setup, so, I take that for an excuse to take days off. I got a pool in the backyard, great food and a view on a church. – Ask why I need an excuse, haven´t found an answer yet. Don´t need to. Just do what I want to.
Charging energy.
The volcanos are my addiction in Indonesia. Number four is not the last one. The night climbs are a solace. Never felt so lonely, it´s a lonely planet, rolling down the road.