I wasn’t really doing much better today. However, we both agreed that being so close to Yogya and with us not liking Solo that much, I needed to be tough and get through this day before crashing.
After breakfast, we tried the Batik quarter again, just to see if more shops were open in the morning. A couple more were open at 8 am but maybe this was now a bit too early for this rather sleepy town. Anyhow, that fancy shop yesterday with its hand-drawn batiks and natural colours had an impact on me liking the printed cloth now and I didn’t find a new sarong to add to my collection. Those fancy ones were really nice and way out of our price range though.
Slightly disappointed, we walked back and headed into one more Batik department store before we reached the hotel. The AC had cooled it down to icy cold so we took our time browsing the clothes and fabrics. Flo found a shirt that he really, really liked but all the sizes were too big on him until staff undressed a mannequin for him to get a smaller size available. We ended up buying it because it’s really, really nice and fancy. Yes, it cost more than we wanted to spend and yes, the price was still laughably small if Flo would still earn. So we went for it as it was one of the things we had agreed on before even starting the trip: New sarong for me, batik shirt for Flo. With the very limited space that we have, this seems a good compromise between not buying anything and wanting to have souvenirs.
Back in the hotel, we packed…I had a good round of vomiting…and we left for the temple Candi Sukuh halfway up Gunung Lawa. This was the only thing for today before heading to Yogyakarta. I was dreading the temple due to our experience in Bali but it turned out to be a very small one, unused by now with only one “warung souvenir”, no hawkers and almost no other tourists.
The temple itself is undergoing some maintenance at the moment which was a pity but the views down to the Solo plain were still great. We didn’t take long to move through the area once but it was lunch time by the time we moved on.
Only a couple of kilometers away, we stopped at a warung where I tried some plain rice in the hopes of keeping it but had to ditch my lemon squash as my stomach sent a clear “too early” message. Flo liked his food and the home-made sambal though.
Finally, we were on our way to Yogya. Andy and Shinta who we met on Flores quite a while back have a cafe and a home stay where we were headed to crash a couple of days. In my perception, the last 100 km took forever but we arrived at the “AS coffee” at around 4 pm with neither Andy nor Shinta around. Staff was lovely though, telling us that Andy would be back at 6 pm so we settled down for a coffee. Despite my stomach, I had to try the “Java chocolate” and was drinking it in tiny sips to make sure it’s okay.
At some point, Andy called and we were invited to come to his other place which has a pool to hang out and drop our bike there as it has secure parking. That’s what we did.
When we arrived, Andy and four backpackers were just getting ready to get food so we passed on the pool for now and tagged along. Since our bike would spend the night here, Andy sorted us with a small local bike which Flo loved instantly. We followed the jeep to a roadside warung which had quite the selection of unusual warung food, including sea snail skewers, whole roasted quail and cow skin. I still stuck to coconut rice and a bit of tofu though, not trusting the peace completely. It was good food. Andy collected the remaining meat scraps to take home for his four adopted cats and we went back to the cafe.
Cafe is probably a bit misleading as most of the space is filled with goods of Indonesia that you can buy. It is all very colourful and you can spend way too much money here: batik, leather bags and wallets, silver jewelry, clothes and all kinds of nifty tidbits. Of course, there are also tables inside and outside to sit at for your coffee and four cats running around….well, mostly sleeping really. A very home-y place.
The day had been long enough for me though so I headed straight upstairs to our room and slept while Flo shared stories and a beer with Andy.