First and foremost, I would like to thank Dr Budi from Medan for the great hospitality. He had sacrificed his precious time…and as a General Practitioner, the time he spent with us was so valuable & expensive! We can’t thank you enough doc!! He is a great photographer & one extraordinary friend!! Please visit his Flickr.
For us in Kuantan, the trip started on Sunday, 20th. June. Me, Rejim & dR Ali drove from Kuantan to KL & reached Badang’s house at about 8PM. Badang treated us with great dinner at Greenwood Gombak. What a delicious catfish! Early Monday morning, Joe, our friend, sent us to LCCT. We met Remi & Emran. And alhamdulillah, the web check-in really helped speed up all the process. We need not to que too long to drop the luggages. Bravo AirAsia.
We boarded the first flight to Medan. We reached Polonia Airport at about 7:30AM. There was this new Indonesian immigration process & that delayed the clearance a bit. We waited for Dr Budie for a while. Dr Budie arranged two vans to cater the six of us. Initially, me, dR Ali & Rejim rode together with Dr Budie in his new Grand Vitara, while Badang, Remy & Emran rode Grand Max with Pak No. By 9AM we were already moving to Tebing Tinggi.
Basically for this trip, we went to these places:
- Sidamanik – tea plantation
- Balige – and around this beautiful place (Dolok Tolong, Hutaginjang, Bakara (the place said as the origin of Batak))
- Sipiso-piso (but I didn’t go here. Been here last year)
- Mount Sibayak
From Tebing Tinggi, we drove to Sidamanik, a tea plantation area which was I very first stop. We were a bit unlucky because the weather was not that great. Nevertheless we managed to shoot few simple shots. I used bracketing for the shots & later merged & tone-mapped all the exposures into a HDR image using Photomatix Pro.
From Sidamanik we drove to Parapat. It was raining most of the time. We stopped & prayed at a mosque there before we continue the journey to Balige.