2015 > Sulawesi Selatan

Thursday July 23

We woke up early to get a good start and breakfast in before we got the bus to Toraja. Anggi was running late for the first time but we got to the bus depot no problem. The bus was a brand new Mercedes, great air conditioning and big fat seats. We were sitting right at the front which afforded us the best view but very little leg room. The trip itself stretched over almost 11 hours winding through the mountains past endless streams of stilt houses, rice fields, tiny shops of every kind and people everywhere. We often got stuck behind overloaded trucks which slowed us down to a walking pace, the road was often no more than a single lane and we saw a lot of super risky overtaking, kids on scooters and mini buses tearing through the traffic. We turned inland from the coast at Pare Pare and climbed higher and higher into the mountains. The scenery was beautiful and glimpsing the lives of so many people was endlessly entertaining. The houses varied from tiny wooden boxes on stilts in the rice fields to the grandiose wedding cake apartments above shop fronts. The bus was full of locals and we made a few stops for toilet breaks and lunch. There were three guys in the drivers cabin chattering away, chain smoking and waving at girls. We arrived in Rantepao around 8pm and Jakob, the owner of Panorama Homestay met us at the door of the bus. After we dropped our things off he showed us a halal restaurant and we grabbed some Ayam Goreng Kampung and super sweet black Toraja coffee before heading back to the homestay to sleep.