Friday, 30 March 2012

The dark roads to Selong

It's my first visit to Lombok, Nusa Tenggara Barat, Indonesia, and to be frank, I wasn't really expecting much since the nature of my visit was purely business from the start. And no, it wasn't to the more famous city of Mataram but rather this time I went to its supposedly twin city, Selong.

But you know me, I've always tried to at least get to know the city I visit by just strolling around the vicinity of the hotel I stayed in, just to get the feel of the city. This time though was different, I didn't. We'll get back to that later.

I heard and did a little look up on what I was heading to and confirmed the airport was a new and shiny one, as you see here in the picture to your right. The paint and windows are still clean and clear, the lights still working and bright, so it's a good first impression to any first-time tourists or visitors.

The flight I took was scheduled to arrive at BANDAR UDARA INTERNASIONAL LOMBOK late evening so being new to the island, I arranged for someone to pick me up. It's a good thing I did cause what I found out most of the roads we need to go through to Selong was dark with minimum lights which means practically no road signs visible. Only those who are familiar with the roads from months of regular passing can take on the one hour drive with blind eyes and without any trouble of adding unnecessary travel time from having to stop a lot to ask for directions from Google maps or another human being, if present that is. And even if there are any human around present, don't think I would want to ask for directions in the dark of the late evening.

So on we went and got there finally after the dark ride to the city of Selong. It's not a big city so not so much night life going on the streets, only a few teenagers with girlfriends having a very late dinner. Hardly any tall buildings in sight as I was taken to the hotel to spend the nights during my visit so I shouldn't be surprised to find that in fact the hotel I'm about to stay in was more of a big house with plenty of rooms. With a view of a big football field just across the house, I'm not really keen to go out and stroll around the neighborhood. But it's quiet though, so no complains there.

W. S.

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