Monday, April 17, 2017

On the Go to Manado 2: First Impressions

I woke up bright and early in Singapore, ready for my morning flight to Manado.  I was a bit lighter in the wallet (not just from the gambling; everything in Singapore is SO expensive!), but glad that the journey to my destination had required two days. Part of travel's whole appeal to me is seeing unique, new places. Singapore is one of the most singular places I had ever been. Truly remarkable. 


I would be driving down the very road in this picture just a few
days after it was taken
The flight to Manado was fascinating. See, I'd been planning this trip for some time, or, at least, day dreaming about it while viewing Google Earth. I'd spent hours studying the satellite imagery of Sulwesi's north coast, looking for possible places of interest and stopping points. As it came to an end, the flight path of the plane took it directly parallel to that north coast. Here, I was seeing in real life what I'd spent so long looking at on a computer screen. Ooh! I know that island! Aha! I know where we are! 


As a middle-aged guy who's spent a lot of times in planes, getting a window seat shouldn't be such a thrill anymore.  One might think that I've gotten used to it by now.  Well, I haven't.  I'm still filled with a childlike sense of wonder when I get to stare out at billowy clouds, fascinating coastlines and even miles and miles of empty ocean. I hope I never lose that, and it's sights like this that help rekindle it. These two atolls didn't show up on the Google Earth. 
Striking similar, looking like cat's eyes and positioned in just the right proportion to each other and to the concave sloping coast of mainland below, it looked like the island of Sulawesi was looking up and smiling at me. 

Manado isn't that big of a city, and my hotel was fairly well located in it's heart. It was a short mini-van-bus ride into downtown, where I spent some time wandering and looking for a couple more items for my trip.  As dinner time came, I found exactly what I was looking for: a nice clean restaurant overlooking the water. 



After sunset, I went the other way from my hotel into the older part of town. This was on eve of Good Friday, and Manado is a fervently Christian town.
In the Western church, they've never reconciled the notion  of Christ's resurrection with all the pagan Easter stuff that goes on with eggs, and chocolate and bunnies. Well, here in Manado, they don't have that problem. In this mural, it kinda looks like the Easter Bunny was there at Calvary Hill.

At just two minutes, this is likely going to be the shortest video in this series.  Enjoy. 


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