On the following pages we will be chronicling Bapak Waleed's historic tour of Indonesia during this summer season of 2008. Click on the days below to read more detail.
Here are some desciptions of places encountered along the way:
This is a very clean and ultramodern airport, with high ceilings, abundant natural light, jungle in the central courtyard of the terminal, and acoustics built such that, even with hundreds of people on each floor, it still feels quiet. KLIA is one of Asia’s largest airports, if not the largest, serving 15-25 million people just last year. People from all over the world travel through Kuala Lumpur, from Europe, Australia, and North America, and can also be seen in both traditional and modern dress from all over Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. The staff at the airport provides a glimpse into the diversity of Malaysia itself: people with backgrounds from all over South and Southeast Asia, from the Indian subcontinent, through China and Southeast Asia, down into Indonesia, the Pacific islands, and even Australia. United in Malaysia, they all speak a common language, often with the same accent.
Jakarta is a huge and modern city, with tall buildings spread out in all directions much like Los Angeles. The road from the airport takes you past countryside and shows you a glimpse of different lifestyles in the area, from the poorer villages to the most posh sections of the city. The water fountain is at the center of a busy roundabout outside Plaza Indonesia, which hosts the Grand Hyatt Hotel Jakarta, as well as a large indoor mall, with three levels, art and photo galleries featuring local artists, and restaurants and shops from BatikKeris to the Body Shop.
Pak Muasri, the head of Camar Putih in Padang, along with his son, awaited Bapak Waleed at the Padang Minangkabau Airport, and greeted him warmly ready to welcome him home and to participate in the opening ceremonies of Pekan Budaya Sumatera Barat 2008, a celebration of the cultures of the region.
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