Jumat, 16 Januari 2015

Wakatobi: Ali Reef Busy Day Underwater



If you think you're having a busy life, try being underwater!


Wakatobi memang terkenal dengan kekayaan gugusan terumbu karang. Penelitian dalam operasi Wallacea menyebut Wakatobi memiliki 750 jenis terumbu karang, salah satu yang terbanyak di dunia! 

Wakatobi is known for its wide array of coral reefs. A research in Wallacea operation states that Wakatobi has around 750 types of coral reefs, one of the most coral reefs in the world! 



Namun Wakatobi bukan hanya karang indah berwarna-warni dan ikan-ikan kecil penghuni terumbu karang. Melihat terumbu karang yang beraneka warna memang menyenangkan, namun terkadang membosankan bagi sebagian orang, meski bagi saya,  berada di bawah laut, dengan terumbu karang yang menyenangkan, tidak pernah membosankan. 

But Wakatobi does not only have its beautiful and colorful corals populated by small fish. To look at the vivid corals is delightful, but sometimes it may be quite boring for some people. But for myself, being underwater with the pretty corals is never boring.


Di Ali Reef, salah satu titik penyelaman di Wakatobi, kata "bosan" sulit terucap. Terutama karena rombongan yang seringkali menyapa di spot ini. Terletak di dekat Pulau Tomia, Wakatobi, hanya perlu waktu kurang dari 30 menit naik boat untuk menuju Ali Reef. 

In Ali Reef, one of the diving points in Wakatobi, the word “boring” hardly comes out. That’s mainly because other groups often greet us when they come to this spot. Located near Tomia Island, Wakatobi, it requires only less than 30 minutes by boat to go to Ali Reef. 


Also met this sea turtle during dive in Ali Reef

Seperti ciri khas Wakatobi lainnya, jarak pandang yang baik serta koral beraneka warna menyambut penyelaman kami sejak awal. Ali Reef memiliki area dengan topografi seperti gunung dengan bagian atas yang mendatar.  

Just like Wakatobi’s other uniqueness, good visibility and colorful coral reefs has welcomed us from the beginning. Ali reef’s topography is like a mountain that is flat the top.


Saat menuju area atas, saya melihat gumpalan hitam besar di laut yang ternyata merupakan kumpulan ikan jack dengan jumlah ratusan, atau mungkin bahkan lebih dari seribu! Schooling jackfish (diver menyebut kumpulan ikan ini dengan istilah "schooling") ini berputar mengelilingi sebagian area puncak yang mendatar. 

When going towards the top area, I saw a black cluster in the waters. That black cluster was actually a school of jackfish, numbered in the hundreds – or even in the thousands! The schooling jackfish circled the flat top area of the reef. 
Look at the size of this schooling!


Arus di area ini cukup kencang sehingga saya dan sebagian besar teman-teman Daihatsu Terios 7 Wonders bertahan dengan mengaitkan hook ke karang mati sambil menikmati pemandangan schooling jackfish yang sedang sibuk ini. Kadang saya tidak tahan dan melepas hook untuk mendekat ke arah gerombolan ikan ini.  

The water current in this area is quite strong that myself and most of my friends from Daihatsu Terios 7 Wonders had to hook ourselves to a dead coral while enjoying the view of the occupied schooling jackfish. I couldn’t help myself but to let go of the hook and wander closer to the school of jackfish.


They love to make a ball formation :D

Sure, those fishes will be a nice background for your profile picture ;)
Salah satu teman kami sangat bersemangat mendekati ikan-ikan ini hingga tidak sadar udara di tabung oksigennya sudah menipis lebih awal dan harus segera melakukan safety stop dan naik ke permukaan. Kesibukan memang membuat kita lupa waktu, benar kan? :) 

One of our friend was so eager approaching the school of fish that they didn’t notice that their oxygen tank level was running low. So an immediate safety stop was done and they started heading to the surface. Our activities really make us lose track of time, don’t they? :)

@marischkaprue - she's having a busy life, at the surface or below the water

NOTES:
  • Titik penyelaman Ali Reef terletak tidak jauh dari Pulau Tomia, hanya sekitar 20 menit dengan kapal dari dermaga Waha di Pulau Tomia, Wakatobi.
  • Masih banyak titik penyelaman lain di area Pulau Tomia. Budget untuk 5x dive dengan penginapan dan makan sekitar Rp. 2,9 juta (belum termasuk tiket pesawat). Info & Booking hubungi Dokter Yudi (Tomia Dive Center) di +62821 87877751
BIG THANKS to Daihatsu Terios 7 Wonders yang telah melakukan touring dari Manado menuju Kendari dan menyeberang ke Pulau Tomia untuk eksplorasi keindahan Wakatobi. I join their awesome trip in Wakatobi.



Senin, 12 Januari 2015

Rapperswill, City of Flowers



Saya tiba di Swiss saat periode menjelang musim panas, namun masa transisi ini masih terkadang diliputi hujan dan langit yang mendung. Hari-hari awal di Switzerland merupakan hari yang cukup gelap dengan tetesan hujan menemani hari-hari saya dan teman-teman, saya berusaha keras mendapatkan foto yang menyenangkan namun mendung seringkali menyapa. 

I arrived in Switzerland in a time before summer. Even so, the transition period from spring to summer can sometimes be covered in rain and cloudy skies. The first few days in Switzerland was quite dark, the drops of rain accompanied my friends and I. I tried my best to get a great picture even though the cloudy weather still lingers. 


Namun di kota ini saya disambut dengan matahari yang bersinar cerah, langit yang biru dan suasana yang sangat menyenangkan. Angin terkadang masih dingin namun cuaca saat itu sangat menyenangkan untuk berjalan kaki menyusuri kota. Rapperswil seakan tidak rela jika saya tidak dapat melihat kecantikan sesungguhnya akibat langit yang muram. Langit cerah dan kota yang indah, kota ini merupakan salah satu kota favorit saya di Switzerland! 

Despite everything, in this city I was welcomed with the shining sun, blue skies, and a wonderful atmosphere. The wind sometimes still felt chilly, but it was still the perfect weather to walk around town. Its as if Rapperswil didnt want me to see its beauty, because of the fuzzy skies. Clear skies and a beautiful town this is one of my favorite cities in Switzerland! 



Rapperswil, atau Rapperswil-Jona adalah kota yang terletak di sisi sungai Zürich. Dahulu Rapperswil terpisah dengan Kota Jona yang kini telah disatukan menjadi Rapperswil-Jona, namun sebagian orang tetap menyebut dengan nama Rapperswil. 

Rapperswil, or Rapperswil-Jona is a city located on the side of Zurich River. In the past, Rapperswil was set apart from Jona City, of which are now combined and named Rapperswil-Jona. But some people still just call it Rapperswil.





Hanya perlu waktu kurang dari dua jam perjalanan kereta untuk menuju kota ini dari Stasiun Zürich. Setibanya di Rapperswill saya langsung berjalan kaki ke area sisi danau yang sangat dekat dengan stasiun. Angsa putih dan bebek terlihat berkumpul di sisi danau terutama dekat area Bootsvernietung, di sisi-sisi jalanan yang berbatasan dengan danau terdapat banyak café-café cantik yang semakin membuat Rapperswil memberi perasaan menyenangkan.

It only takes a two-hour train ride to get to this town from Zurich station. When I arrived in Rapperswil, I walked towards the lakeside near to the station. White swans and ducks gather at the lakeside, particularly near Bootsvernietung area. The roadside that is right next to the lake has numerous pretty-looking cafes that adds even more of the wonderful feeling being in Rapperswil




Ada satu hal yang menjadi ciri khas Rapperswil: bunga! Ya, sangking banyaknya tanaman bunga di kota ini, Rapperswil disebut sebagai City of Flowers. Hal ini terasa saat berkeliling kota, saya dengan mudah menemukan balkon-balkon dengan tanaman bunga, mawar-mawar bermekaran di sisi jalan dan tentunya taman bunga mawar! 

Theres one thing that makes Rapperswil unique: flowers! Yes, there are so many flowers in this town, Rapperswil is called the City of Flowers. This phenomenon is seen as we go around town. I can easily spot balconies with flowers, roses blooming at the side of the road, and of course, a rose garden! 

Rose garden!

Sebelum menuju Lindenhof yang berada di sisi bukit Rapperswil, kami berhenti dahulu di taman mawar atau Rose Garden di area kota tua Rapperswil. Saya datang di bulan Agustus, saat yang tepat karena di bulan Juli hingga September adalah musim dimana mawar-mawar bermekaran dan memberi wangi semerbak di taman ini.

Before heading for Lindenhof, located on the side of Rapperswil hill, we stopped by a rose garden in an old area of Rapperswil town. I came in the month of August - the perfect time to be here because from July to September is the season when roses bloom and gives out a wonderful scent in the garden.




Castle of The Counts of Rapperswil
Kami kemudian menaiki tangga ke Lindenhof, di mana cityscape Kota Rapperswil terlihat sangat cantik. Di area viewing point ini kami dapat menikmati beberapa pemandangan di arah yang berbeda, mulai dari Danau Zürich, kota tua Rapperswil hingga ke Castle of The Counts of Rapperswil yang hanya berjarak 5 menit berjalan kaki dari Lindenhoft viewing point.

We then climbed some stairs towards Lindenhof, where the Rapperswils cityscape looks gorgeous. In this viewing point area we enjoyed a different number of views observable from different angles, from Zurich Lake, Rapperswils old town, to the Castle of the Counts of Rapperswil that is a five-minute walk from Lindenhoft viewing point.





Michael, guide kami mengajak untuk naik ke atas menara. Saya terengah-engah saat melewati entah anak tangga ke berapa yang seakan tidak ada habisnya. Namun saat tiba di titik tertinggi dengan pemandangan atap-atap bangunan Kota Rapperswil dan kota tua yang terlihat jelas dari jendela, "trekking" ini terbayar dengan view mempesona!

Our guide, Michael invited us to go up the tower. I was trying catching my breath as best as I can, as I pass by an infinite number of staircases. But when I arrived at the highest point with its view of the city rooftops and old town seen clearly from the window, I thought to myself, this climb was well worth it!’ 




Cantik adalah kata yang tepat untuk menggambarkan Rapperswil. Kota yang akan membuat kita senang hati berkeliling, berjalan santai ataupun nongkrong di café dekat Danau Zürich. Rapperswil is beautiful like flowers! 

Prettyis the perfect word to describe Rapperswil. This is a city that we will gladly stroll around, to walk around casually or to hang out in cafes near Zurich Lake. Rapperswil is beautiful like its flowers!

@marischkaprue - she loves flowers as much as she loves chocolates


RELATED STORIES:

 
I Join this Switzerland trip with Qatar Airways, from Jakarta to Zurich then simply traveling by train to other cities, including Zermatt. Anyway, they have a very nice business class with the best lounge in Hamad International Airport, Doha :)

Also the GOOD NEWS is Qatar Airways is having a new year sale, ONLY until 16th January!

Travel period valid from 20th January to 10th December 2015.


Check out sample fares to several popular destinations:


 See more HERE

Minggu, 11 Januari 2015

Accor Google Glass Experience



It was not my first visit to Singapore, or my first New Year's Eve party. Reaching the age with a 3 as the number in front has been making a new year is just another time passes by.


But this time I can't hide the smile and excitements on my face. We arrived in Changi Airport, went straight to Ibis Singapore Bencoolen and found the reason why I am so excited for this NYE. A simple white box which almost the size of an A4 paper with no pictures, no mambo-jumbo writings on its side, just a simple "glass" on the top.

I saw the Google Glass video on YouTube way before I could try this thing and my reaction was "that is amazing, like a future coming right at you" and there it is, in front of me. The glass and frame, the Google Glass nicely arranged on its box, with simple note of "see" with an arrow to its clear glass (the viewing glass panel), "capture" pointing to the button on the right side, "touch" on its side, "on-off" and "listen."

I hate reading instruction manuals and I believe most people didn't really read that so I just wear it just to feel it and turn it on. First I attached the sunglasses that came along with the package but it makes the looks of the Google Glass wasn't really futuristic so for me Google Glass is better use that way, or if combined with another eyeglasses, must be the clear one in my opinion.


It took time to adjust using Google Glass but in fact it is very simple, a bit long waiting for it to be ready after I turn it on, maybe around 10 seconds or more, I didn't really count how much time waiting but when it's in front of you for the first time, waiting 10 seconds seems so long.

There's touch panel on the right side of the glass
First a “glass” letter appears. What we see is actually only on the right side, so your right eye see that and combined (of course) as one vision perceived by our brain. Google Glass detect our voice, I can say "Okay Glass" then the glass will show options like "Take a photo" "Google (as in Google something" until asking directions and other simple thing which usually took some time and the great thing is I don't have to carry anything, it stick to my head, all I gotta do is just walk, saw something interesting and if I want to take a picture I have options like saying to Google Glass "Okay Glass, Take a photo" or just blink twice, or swipe the right side of the Google Glass (touch panel).

You can share your pov (point of view) directly
Actually it was fun that we can take a photo, record video from our point of view and we can post it directly to twitter or anything attached to our Google Glass settings. I was thinking if I took to many video or photos but 2 GB of RAM I think enough for the whole day, well it's not producing 4K video since it's more about sharing what we see directly.

Glass gave me route from Bencoolen area to Ion Orchard
I might say that the menus are just similar of what was on the smartphone but what makes it interesting is that the display is right in front of my eyes, making the real view of what my eyes seeing blend with the display. I just have to admit that this is really like coming from the future (just like on several science fiction movies I saw few years back and it came into real now). Imagine walking down the street and you're thinking about coffee, just ask google glass "where's the nearest coffee shop?" and it'll give options with an additional map and directions, life made easy!

POV recognize and google information via Google Glass
 
Some friends ask about how the connection would run on Google Glass, it was basically connected through smartphone via MyGlass application. So the Google Glass gets the Internet connection via Bluetooth. In short, I still have to bring my smartphone to keep the Google Glass connected.



I'm having a three days trial on this Google Glass, to be honest, the first day is exciting but a bit dizzy, I think I wear Google Glass too long and I found an article telling that on first day we mustn't wear more than a few hours due to eyes ability to adjust focus on one eye on the glass display while other eye goes without use.

I must say that Google Glass might be the best eyeglass with integrated display; it's lightweight, easy to use, looks good also. The problem might be on the price; maybe if they cut the price well, I might be seeing a lot of Google Glass on the street, people love wearing things from the future.

@marischkaprue - living in present, seeing a good future ahead

Photos by Ferry Rusli

THANKS TO
Ibis Singapore Bencoolen & Google Glass for this NYE through Google Glass experience