Alhamdulillah, I finally unlocked Papua (West Papua, actually) in September 2016. I got chance to visit Sorong, Sorong Selatan and Manokwari to spread the information about KIP (Kartu Indonesia Pintar). I visit those places with staff from Directorate of Senior High School and really we had blast time there.
For someone who never interact heavily with Papuans, it really is exciting experience for me. As you know, at that time, the distribution of KIP didn’t do well. Moreover, there are so many people who complained that they didn’t get KIP or didn’t know how to use it. When we share the information through meeting with school principal, some of them really scold us because of it. However, interacting with Papuans make me realize that diversity really exists and it is beautiful. Though I was scolded, I know that they don’t take it at hearts, we still can interact amicably after meeting it’s done. In my humble opiniom, because Papua has suffered for a long time, the Papuans want to be heard.
Beside the process of spreading KIP’s information, I have good experience travelling in Sorong and Manokwari. In Sorong, I was accompanied by beautiful lady named Sayang. I called her Kak Sayang (see my photo with beautiful lady). FYI, She was just given birth a week before we came. I can’t imagine if I was her. However, she treated us well. She showed us the beach in Sorong called Tembok Berlin (since it was bordered by a wall). We drank coconut water there. She told me that this place would be more active at night since there would be many fisherman who open ‘instant restaurant’ here and we could eat fresh fish from the sea (I don’t have that chance, unfortunately). Kak Sayang also accompanied us to Gift store. It sold Koteka (please look for more information in google if you don’t know), root-made-bags, and batik. I bought beautiful batik from the store.
In Manokwari, We also had chance to take trip around Manokwari. Mostly, we visited Beach. Manokwari was known for its white sand beach. We got introduced to a lady that can call fish to the shore just by using whistle. At first we didn’t believe it, however, after 15 mins, Many fishes come to the shore, too bad my camera couldn’t capture it clearly (see my last pict). We also had chance to visit Mansinam Island. It was said that this island is become the main source of Christian religion in Papua. At the top of the hills, there was Jesus sculpture (almost the same with the one in Rio de Janeiro). I think if you are christian or Chatolic, visiting this Island would be a pleasure experience since it was so authentic.
In Manokwari, there is one place that I would like to visit but didn’t have time to do it. It is Pegunungan Arfak. When I look up at google, it was a natural preservation in Manokwari. It was more special since there are some traditional tribes that lived there. I really want to see and know how they live, what they wear, how they interact, anything related to them. However, the trips to Pegunungan Arfak takes three day trips and I should rental special car (the car that allows you to travel around highlands) that was sooooo expensive if I traveled alone. huhuuhu, I should say goodbye for now but I’ll be back to visit it for sure. Manokwari was also known for its fresh sea fish. My companion bought two octopus and some fresh fishes. Luckily, our guides was kind enough to wrap them hence we didn’t face the problem when we go home.
In my opinion, visiting Papua is a must when you like to travel. Manokwari and Sorong are the one that I can recommend if you are not keen of traditional way. Hopefully I’ll have chance to get back there. I will, insyaAllah.
(Senayan, 2017, when I do miss travelling so much)