Weekly Photo Challenge: Windows

My favorite window picture ever! That’s Thaku, our Lhasa Apso, eager to enjoy a ride in the new car.

Another pretty window that I could never pass by without a second glance, sometimes a third:

Airline windows give me great pleasure, with some breathtaking views:

Some car windows are an invitation:

Our house window in Hanoi never moved, but gave me a range of landscapes that would send me rushing to grab the camera every time:


It’s a jungle out there!

We’re just getting back from Taman Safari, a wildlife park off Jakarta, near Puncak. We did the night safari and the day safari and a couple of shows in between, some of which got me depressed about how far we can push nature to ‘entertain’ us.
The Safari Malam (night safari) is thankfully just a Saturday night affair; busloads of people (us included) disturbing the peace of the night with spotlights on the animals, incessant commentary, and if that wasn’t enough, signing off with some firecrackers or gunshot sounds and ghouls for Halloween. The animal show after that was much, much worse. Making dogs do silly tricks on 2 legs is so last century and cringe-worthy! How that show delivers a message of “save our wildlife” I fail to see.
That said, our caravans for sleeping were simple, functional, the food at the restoran was ok – all local flavours (that’s good) and I got to eat some veggie nasi goreng for breakfast that put me in a very good mood for the day.
The daytime safari was miles better! We’d heard and read all about feeding the animals that walked up to the car, but the experience was extraordinary. Every animal has a beauty that has only a little to do with their looks, and a lot to do with their elegance and their place in the ecosystem. We loved every creature out there, fed loads of carrots and bananas (not to the big cats, naturally, coz we didn’t want to feed them our arms!) and captured a few adorable expressions! Look at these:

A change in career?

This weekend we have the whale of a car all to ourselves. So we took off to the zoo early in the morning for Souvik’s run and my cycling. The cycle neatly folds and sits in the boot, with room to spare for half a dozen more if need be. Souvik doesn’t have a driver’s license, so I was at the wheel of a new big car in a new country, with a world-class navigator by my side (Maps on iPhone, not Souvik). After the initial jitters of finding our way out of basement #3 into daylight, it was exhilarating! I need the footrest to hop into the vehicle, and you can barely see me once I’m in, but I had the best time driving! I could never reach the parking meters from my seat, and made quite a fool of myself trying to park, but all was forgiven when the parking attendants saw “Ibu” at the wheel, and all “helpers” within a 1 km radius would land up to help.

Another couple of months on the road, and I should map the city in my brain!

Ragunan zoo was fun. We’re like children, excited to see animals. Souvik was supposed to run 10km, but he was stopped in his tracks by a tiger making eye contact. The baby hippo thought I was his new girlfriend, coz he sidled up to me repeatedly, ignoring all others. Maybe he was hungry; I was treated to multiple views of his impressive jawline and all the teeth within. I thought the monkeys were entertaining, swinging about like gymnasts, and making a racket for our benefit. They thought I was their feeder, seemingly dressed in the zoo staff colors of magenta and black. One of the monkeys gave me very explicit instructions, by flinging a few banana peels at me alone, hoping I would get the hint. Yeah, hilarious.

Sadly, tomorrow is car-free Sunday, no driving. Happily, it is cycling/running morning. Have a nice weekend, people! Or have a virtual tour of the zoo with these pictures: