Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Beautiful Autumn at Aachen

Autumn... Is Amazing!
Indonesia has only two seasons, which are dry (hot) season and wet (rain) season (which also hot). It is different with most European countries that have four seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. This is the reason why I never know much about autumn season.

Fortunately, now I have the opportunity to experience the autumn season because this year I am in the Germany. At first, I did not really care about it  due the weather was very cold outside. But, in the end I went to Westpark in Aachen to see and feel the autumn season.

Westpark

After visited Westpark, I was hoping Indonesia also has a autumn season. Hehe. Maybe if Indonesia have it, then there will be many park in the city. The result of this is a big public yard for normal people to play prank, picnic, or to just hang out outside. I believe not every people want to go to a mall. They just don't have a better choice to choose. In fact, park is a very nice place for cycling, running, picnic, barbecue, romantic walk, small baseball game, and many other outdoor activities.

Here are some other photos from my trip to Westpark:
 

Monday, October 31, 2011

Black Halloween

Hi, we are the zombie couple. Trick or treat?! :D
I never celebrate my birthday in another country beside Indonesia. Usually, I celebrate that special day with my family or my close friends (rarely both). Fortunately (or should I say "Unfortunately"), this year is not an ordinary year because I celebrated my birthday in Aachen, Germany.

So, what's so different with this year?
Well, it's quite lonely in Germany because I cannot celebrate my special day with my family and my buddies. I don't know what to do and there is no special preparation for the celebration. Thus, it's just like an ordinary day for me.

In the end, I made the photo above during that time just for fun. Hehe. I am sure you guys can guess when my birthday is by looking the theme of that photo. Lastly, happy Halloween guys! And happy birthday for myself!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fluctuat Nec Mergitur (Paris, France)

The Eiffel Tower and Its View

Paris, France is the first international city which I traveled with my travelling group. At first, I was very afraid to go there because there are many rumors from my senior that say many cases of theft, fraud, and robbery happen in Paris. But, I cannot go back anymore because I have booked the ticket and I don't want to lose my money. More importantly, I don't want to lose a chance to travel to the one of the beautiful cities in the world.

So, we went to Paris from 6-9 August 2011. Let me explain first on how to travel in Paris. Based on my finding, the best way to travel in Paris is with Paris Metro (short for "Métropolitain"). Paris metro is a rapid transit (subway train) system which contains 16 lines and divided into 7 zones that we can use to travel to every part of Paris city. People can find more information about ticket which suitable with their plans in here. In my case, I chose to buy one day pass ("Mobilis") ticket for €6.10 to €17.30 (depending on number of zones). In fact, I only traveled in zone 1 and I also got a discount price because I am a student (ISIC card will help). Thus, I spent less than €6.10 on transportation for one day.

Now, here is my experience travelling in Paris which is sorted by day:
  • Day 1
    We stayed in Bed and Breakfast Hostel which is located near Bonne Nouvelle metro station. We arrived in the hostel around 8 PM, we put our stuff in the hostel and directly headed to the Eiffel Tower. We can't go to the top of the tower because it was already closed. Night time is the best time to see the Eiffel Tower because it's more beautiful with the lights that surround it. Thus, I suggest people to queue for the Eiffel Tower in the afternoon (because it would be a very long queue), climb up around early evening, then climb down to see the Eiffel Tower from the park (near the tower) in the late evening.
  • A View From the Eiffel Tower
  • Day 2
    On the second day, we went to  Sacre Coeur, Arc de Triomphe, Invalides, Pont Alexender III, Eiffel Tower (we climbed to the top of it), and took the Siena River Cruise. When we was travelling to Arc de Triomphe, one of my friends got fraud and lost her money for €180 (approximately  Rp 2,169,155). Their trick was by asking my friend to play with them in a game like the picture below:

    Which one is the white one?
    The rule for this game is very simple: the player has to guess which one is the pot that has white dot. The dealer will turns over all of the pots and start to shuffle them. If the player success to guess where the pot which has white dot, he will gets twice of his bet. But if he loses, then he will lose his bet. The minimum bet of this game is €50  (Rp 602,543). Thus, please be careful for this kind of things if you guys would like to travel to Paris. Don't speak to any strangers (except to ask directions) and don't receive anything from them.
    From top-left, top-right, bottom: Notre Dame Church, Invalides, Sacre Coeur

  • Day 3
    On day three, we went to  Louvre MuseumNotre Dame Church, and Pantheon (by the way, Rome also has Pantheon). Louvre Museum is extremely huge, we spent 4 hours to saw every part of the museum. Louvre Museum is the location of the phenomenal film "The Da Vinci Code" and it's also the place where the famous painting "Mona Lisa" is stored.

    Mona Lisa
  • Day 4 (final day)
    On the final day, we departed from early morning to fly back to our city, Aachen, Germany.

Well said, Paris is truly one of the best cities to travel. But it also has some drawbacks, which are:
  • The subway station which is dirty and confusing
    The city of Paris is great and beautiful (the surface), unfortunately their subway is not. The subway station is filled with garbage and graffiti. Moreover, there are 16 lines of Metro Station and 5 lines of RER which are connected to each other. Sometimes we have to change to another line (more than one) to get to our destination.
  • Unofficial sellers which are roams in various part of tourist attractions
    I know they need money to buy foods, but I don't like the way they try to sell their "stuff." There was one case where they pulled my hand and forced me to buy their goods. But, for those who are interested with cheap souvenirs (I cannot guarantee about the quality), those unofficial sellers are very helpful. Tourist can buy a miniature of Eiffel Tower with price range from €5 to €30 (bargain is a must).

Conclusion:

There will be always pros and cons for every city. Paris is definitely a great choice to travel, but I suggest you guys to really prepare your travel plan to avoid unexpected events.

Here are more photos from my trip:

Left-bottom: The Baptism of Christ by Cornelis van Haarlem


L'Amour et Psyché by François-Édouard Picot

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Legend of Mana, Playstation 1

The World Map

Finally, after almost over 10 years, I have managed to finish Legend of Mana, one of the fantastic games from SquareSoft. Yeeee!! :D

Wait... Wait?! 10 years?! Seriously, dude?!
Actually, we only need 2x24 hours to finish this game, but because I played this game when I was in junior high school and I was not really good enough in Role Playing Games (RPG), thus I was failed at that time, bored, and changed to another game.

Home: We're here only because we like staying here.
Many people hold the opinion that playing video games is just a waste of time, power, and mind; however I disagree with that point of view. In fact, video games really help me to improve my English skill, especially vocabulary and general grammar. With the help of my mighty English dictionary, I added English words to my little precious brain little by little in those good old days.

Furthermore, playing video games also train my brain logic to solve puzzles, quizzes, or problems. Video games which I really recommend for this are Final Fantasy the Series, Resident Evil, Alundra 2, Dino Crisis, and Midventure of Tron Boone.

In short, playing video games is very FUN! But we also have to balance our time for our family, friends, and works. Don't let video games become the player of our life!

~ FIN ~

Friday, August 12, 2011

Happy Second Anniversary to Me and GF

Happy Second Anniversary
Yesterday, on 11.08.11 is my second anniversary with my girlfriend. The collage above is the summary of events that we spent from the first year to the second year. Although we have separated for almost 1 year, but it turns out we have so much photos which I cannot put in that collage. Haha. We might have to reduce our activities in the third year. *just kidding*

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Got Problems?! Just Shut Up and Smile!!

Shut Up and Smile
"Take a good look around. Does life really suck or are we just complaining?" - Bowling for Soup
It's almost two months since I have lived in Germany. In my daily life, there are some parts of activities which are very different from my life when I was in Bangkok and Jakarta. For instance is cooking!

I am not comfortable with cooking because I don't like to touch oily or sticky stuff when we usually have to handle in the process of cooking. Thus, I constantly wash my hands even I have not finished my foods.

Furthermore, I also have to do *daily* chores; which are: washing dishes, swept my room, and washing my clothes. Gosh! I am sick of those house duties! Those are the reason why when somebody asks for my conditions in here, I spontaneously answer them with "kidnap me to Jakarta", "I miss my home than ever" and so on.

But, I also realized that I still have to stay in Germany for more than 10 months. I cannot avoid those chores and run away from my responsibilities in here. Then, I understand that I cannot be like this anymore, grumble would not change anything!

I promise to myself to just "shut up and smile" in any condition that I have to face in Germany.

Credits:
http://sheisyourjuliet.deviantart.com

Friday, July 29, 2011

A Dam on the Rotte River (Rotterdam)

Dark Clouds
Approximately, one week ago, I and my friends traveled to Rotterdam, Netherlands. We also traveled with other students from RWTH and FH. This travel is organized by INCAS which also handle all issues regarding university students.

We spent 2 hours by bus to go there. Our bus stopped in a place where it has many windmills, I cannot remember the name of the place. One of the guides told me that windmill actually is use by Netherlands to protect them from floods. Those windmills serve to drain water into the river which will be forwarded to the sea.

After we arrived in Rotterdam, suddenly the weather changed dramatically and become uncertain. Sometimes it was rain, stopped, and then it suddenly rained again. Fortunately, INCAS provided the entire participant a tour guide (divided by groups) which told the history of Rotterdam city. In the end, the event went well and I was very happy.

Here are some photos from the trip:


Speed Duck
This is a Kubuswoningen (Cube House); it was built by Piet Blom in 1984. There are 32 cubes attached to each other. I cannot imagine how funny if normal people actually live in there. The house consists of three floors and there is one room which is specially designed for kitchen. To go inside the house, tourists need to pay around €2,50.


The Harbor Area

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Kölner Lichter im Rheinpark, Germany

Sparks!
I took these photos when I was in Köln to celebrate the Köln's Light event. It was very difficult for me to capture a perfect firework photo without a tripod (I would say it's impossible). Anyway, here are the best shots that I got in that day:

Firework Tree

Smile :)