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    Tropical Storm Tour: Sumatra Part 8

    Tuesday, August 11, 2015
    Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia

    Welcome to the ferry from Tuk Tuk to Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.
    Welcome to the ferry from Tuk Tuk to Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.

    I woke up bright and early again today to catch a ferry around 9:00 am from Tuk Tuk on Pulau Samosir over to Parapat, where there was a share taxi with my name on it. There was no way I was going to subject myself to another six-hour rattletrap death ride on a rusty old Indonesian bus. My taxi ticket only cost 80,000 rupiah ($5.93), and while that was twice as much as the bus, the whole ride experience was only about one billion times smoother and better. The car was relatively new, small and nimble, and even though the driver employed all of the same crazy maneuvers as most Indonesian motorists, it wasn’t nearly as scary as it would have been on a huge, old, decrepit bus.

    The ferry port in Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.
    The ferry port in Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.

    Boarding the taxi in the chaotic market stall area of Parapat was myself, an older couple from France (who, oddly enough, were on the same bus I took from Medan to Parapat two days before), a young couple from France, and a young man from South Korea. As the South Korean guy and I were the last to board (in the middle row), the young French girl in the back row asked if she and her boyfriend could change seats with us as she might get car sick. So, the South Korean guy and I got in the back. After a couple of hours, I noticed that the French girl had been smiling, laughing and conversing with her boyfriend–and even kissing him–the whole way and that she didn’t suffer from car sickness at all. She never once looked queasy or put down her head. She looked 100% fine and happy. She just lied through her teeth to us so she didn’t have to sit in the cramped rear seats with dark, tinted windows that didn’t open. I hate people who lie just to get what they want.

    Heading in between the market stalls toward the share taxi in Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.
    Heading in between the market stalls toward the share taxi in Parapat, Sumatra, Indonesia.

    After four hours, we stopped at a food stall in a small town for about a half hour. I didn’t want to take a chance on the buffet food that may have been sitting out too long–it was all meat anyway–so I just grabbed a bag of potato chips instead. About an hour later, we dropped off the young French liar and her boyfriend at Kuala Namu airport then drove the rest of the way to Medan. The older French guy was riding shotgun and had been smiling and waving at Indonesians–and snapping photos of them–on the side of the road the whole trip. He seemed really nice, as was the South Korean guy who I talked to a bunch.

    Back in Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia.
    Back in Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia.

    Arriving in Medan, the driver asked us where each of our hotels were so he could drop us off. I handed him my Gandhi Inn business card, but I could tell he wash’t familiar with that area. So, he promptly pulled over, kicked me out of the taxi, and in a very rude tone, told me to take a becak to my hotel. He was not even slightly friendly or apologetic about it at all. Back at the Gandhi Inn, it took three tries to get a room I needed in a quiet area close to the wi-fi router so I could get caught up on installments of this here travel journal. Although I was feeling a lot better than the day before, I was not back to being 100% healthy, so I just convalesced for the remainder of the day.

    Words and photos ©2015 Arcane Candy.

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