Saturday, 21 March 2009

a rollercoaster ride on a Jogja becak...

Saturday 21st March 2009

ok so a becak is basically a trishaw...the skinny dude sits at the back on his bicycle and cycles you around in a little carriage connected to the bike. and most of these guys are skinny dudes...i mean at one point when we were choosing, gone were any attempts to actually look for a mildly attractive man to pedal you around...no no...we were looking straight at the calf muscles...i mean you gotta know the guy has the stamina to get you to chosen destination.

we make the decision to take the becak...and the guy pulls up. one person gets in and we wonder where the other becak is because two people are NEVER going to fit in there...but lo and behold we are expected to squeeze in together. we wriggle ourselves into as comfortable a position as possible and off we go...it's terrifying...really terrifying...the traffic, the pollution, the noise...you're at ground zero, man and you feel you are in the midst of everything...add to this a certain someone's penchant for having the 'top down' (err, a dodgy canvas cover that at least helps you feel you are in some miserable way shielded from the mayhem) and well you might as well be sitting on the bonnet of anyone's car really...

the guy has power...those legs can go...but you still feel every bump in the road...make that every crack...suspension? what's that?

the journey of 3km feels like a never-ending ride to hell...between smoke belching from every vehicle, motorbikes zooming by, cars over-taking on the other side of the road so close you wonder whether you could just grab on and give becak dude a hand...

but we get there...still in one piece but definitely shaken...and stirred, for that matter. it's a one off experience, right? something you have to do once while in Jogjakarta...so tell me then...how on earth did we end up riding in them almost the entire trip...!
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