Let’s Stop Being a “Journalist” While Traveling

It’s been a while since I have a break myself from writing during the trip. All started when I feel so much bored suddenly with all the activities that I need to do during the backpacking. Which I need to move from one place to another, taking lots of pictures, gain some information, digging it, make a notes about it and finally, do the magic into words. I feel like I am not having a “vacation” in my vacation!

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Beautiful breathtaking sunset I see in Alor on my first day here 🙂

But I don’t want to complain. It’s a decision that I took and I really love to do it however. A friend of mine who recently such a well whisperer for me, heard me talking about it, said something that really incredible advise for me : “Dea, stop being a “journalist” for a while.”


In the beginning I was feeling offended with his comment. How come you suggest me a thing that actually what I do now?! But then I realized, maybe that’s the answer… Maybe I need to stop for a while being so ambitious and perfectionist to myself. Maybe I need to stop beating myself so hard in order to make everything running as my plan. Maybe I need to hold back for able to enjoying my travel completely. All in all, I am following his idea and put myself away from laptop and let the travel flows as it should be for the last few days.


I decided to leave Atambua city and go to Alor island without knowing what will be happened next in the island. One thing I know that I should move, because I also don’t have so much time left for exploring East Nusa Tenggara. 2 months in Timor island probably was enough, even I know, I haven’t seen all (who can in such short time?) but at least, I already visited some and make memories everywhere…

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Me, Frankie, Michael and El’s family ❤

Alor is only an hour to go from Kupang. I had a nice last morning in Atambua – when the family I stayed with being so kind to me, especially mama who cooked for me in hurry sambal and peanuts. I also really enjoyed take a 7 hours bus ride from Atambua to Kupang. I loved to see all the green scenery from the window, I loved to see how people doing so hard to grow vegetables and corn in front of their house. I loved to see how blue the sky was and how fresh the air is.

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Alor kids were so happy playing in the sea – who wouldn’t? 🙂

Alor greeted me with a view of beautiful islands and crystal blue sea from the top. I have no idea who will pick me up in the airport because I forget to save the number of CS member who gonna host me during my trip in the island. Oh well, I still being positive and watch all the passengers already gone from the airport one by one. Some men really curious with a woman and two heavy bags still there in the waiting room. Some of them of course were drivers who want to offer their transportation service for me. I still laughed to remember the conversation I had with some airport guys that time :


X             : Kakak (sister), is there anyone will pick you up?

Me         : I think so.

X             : You better call him because it’s already half an hour for you.


Ohhh, I forget to mention that Wings Air was flying earlier than the schedule from Kupang to Alor (strange!) that’s why I landed earlier than it should be in the airport.


Me         : I don’t have his number.

X             : Hahh! How come you don’t have his number? How does he look? What is his name?

Me         : His name Asamau, and I never met him.

X             : Whattttt?? You never meet this guy and you come to Alor from Jakarta.


And yesss, I don’t have any mood to explain about everything to this guy that I recently just met (which probably I will never meet again).


Me         : Yep.

X             : So you’re gonna wait for him. What if he will not come?

Me         : Oh relax, he will. Don’t worry.


And no. He didn’t come.

Someone else came to pick me up. He actually arranged her to pick me up in the airport. I was actually feeling so silly for not saving his phone number (haha) – my stop being a journalist thing already started! So I even became so careless about who I am going to meet. But acting cool is my middle name. After all, if no one picks me up, I will stay somewhere and figure it all later. Don’t make things complicated, lah

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I am swimming in Maimol beach with Ezza, El’s son 🙂

I definitely started to fall in love with Alor when I see how easy it is to find the beach here. I love beach and the feeling when that salty water runs over my body. I love swimming on it. I love the salty breeze. And I always love the tempting bluish color ocean fill my eyes. My mood was getting up and up again. It is getting better when I meet with Mitha (the girl who picked me up) and Asamau’s family. El, Wany and Ezza, their son, are really warm and friendly people. Another happiness added when two British travelers stopped by in Alor and we explored the island a bit together.

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We are going to Ternate island and surrounding…


Actually I felt so happy when I see another fearless foreigners travelers. There is always two different point of view about traveling for Indonesian and Foreigners. For them, it is pretty normal to see a woman travel (even alone), for Indonesian (even they are travelers), it is still odd to see and I need to explain a bit (or long) to them why I am doing this backpacking. No, it’s not about finding myself, I am already old enough to find myself. It is simply because I want to do it. Period. So meeting up with that two lads kind of bring me a break – for not again explaining why I am here and why I am doing the lalalalalaaa… For almost a week, I finally not write anything and just enjoying the days without thinking about any information that I probably missed – wow, please congratulate me!

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Kakak El, me, Frankie and Michael.

I probably can’t stop writing (since now I am opening my laptop again). I will lie if I said so. Writing brings evil and saint inside me out. And I don’t like to keep them invisible. But I am happy to follow my friend’s advice to stop being a journalist for a while. I remember a story I read in The Alchemist book by Paulo Coelho, it’s about two women that instructed by the king to bring the oil in their spoon and walk around the city while keep the oil on the spoon there. One woman keep her eyes always to the oil so she didn’t take attention about the city. When the king asked her about his city, she doesn’t know anything. The other woman was too excited to look around the city and forget about the oil on the spoon, so it is gone, probably fall to the street. And king also angry to her because she didn’t take care of the oil.

The key is to keep the balance between seeing the city and take care the oil.

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Me in Kepa island. Love it so much!


I think I can apply that to myself as well. For all travelers, especially those who love to travel and write about it, and understand what I feel… Maybe we shouldn’t never forget to enjoy the city, don’t spoil the fun of traveling in order to keep the oil in our hands so we didn’t see anything. But I also think it will be too careless (for me) if I just enjoy the city without keep the oil on my spoon still there. I would like to keep the oil full, so I can share it to other people too.

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Look! My happiness is back!!

My friend told me that probably I need to arrange a trip with my old friend in East Nusa Tenggara, because he also ever had a same situation as mine when he traveled in a long time, for him, his cure was meeting his best friend and have a drink together. But all my friends in Jakarta are not able to fly to East Nusa Tenggara – they need to work. Some are having their own plans. Some are not interest with East Nusa Tenggara. But hey, life always a bit pretty weird sometimes. It can changes totally from one moment to another. My cure was being in deep water again, enjoying all the colorful coral and see face to faces with fishes and all animals underwater (well, haven’t seen the shark, but lucky enough to see the sea snake underwater), or just having a barefoot steps on the beach. I am happy again.

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I wish happy traveling for this two funny lads. May you enjoy Indonesia to the max 🙂

Anyway, a week break maybe enough 😉

I can’t stop being “journalist” while traveling. Maybe it’s already in my blood.

I will go write again soon. Very very soon.


Dea Sihotang




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