Becak driver, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Early morning saw us strolling along Jalan Malioboro again. Many becak drivers offered their support but we preferred to "jalan-jalan" (walk). Our first destination was the sultan palace ("Kraton") which was built in the middle of the 18th century. We saw the large pendopos which are being used for listening to gamelan performances. And the famous desk where the overthrow of the Dutch was plotted.
Afterwards we went to a Batik manufacture and had a closer look at the production steps. It came to my mind that my Mum had always done "Batik" with the children in her Kindergarten. But I had never seen the production before. We took a becak back to the city center.
After having a short look at Fort Vredeburg (picture) it was time for a little break.
We walked through the animal market (how sad!) and found a little restaurant. I will never forget the lunch we had there. Not because the food was especially good or bad. Actually I can't remember what I ate. No, it was the "setting". The owner had some falcons who lived at the entrance. Plus a giant, 1,80 meter (6 ft), plastic waran - which was located directly under our table. (picture) "Strange!" That was my first thought. But I like strange places. :-D Shortly after we had started our meal Katrin suddenly said: "The waran has moved!" I shook my head in wise disbelief, looked at her with my typical dignity and said: "Katrin, you don't really think they would let a living waran stroll around their restaurant and rest under our table - without even telling us!" Shook my head again and innerly laughed about this perfect example of female naivity.
Fort Vredeburg, Yogyakarta (Java, Indonesia). Built by the Dutch in the colonial time.
Well, she knew I am a wise guy.
The waran who had a rest under our table in Yogyakarta, Java
I was still deep in thought about this silly incident when the owner of the restaurant approached our table. He bent down and oddly enough grabbed for the huge "plastic thing". Then he turned to the couple in his wake - and presented to them his pride and joy: a 1,80 meter utterly living waran with an impressive huge snout! My jaw dropped open. I tried not to look at my wife but I could actually feel she was grinning triumphantly! It couldn't be true. But it was. :-D
In the afternoon we visited one of the popular shadow plays. It was a perfomance for tourists that lasted for about 60 minutes. we learned that the original performances may last up to six hours!