Simpang Lima at night (Semarang, Indonesia)

I hate to say it, but we spend the entire day in our hotel room relaxing. Well, I did work until about 1pm. Then I looked at Paul and asked what he wanted to do. He didn’t care and I didn’t feel like doing much. So we settle in for a rest day watching movies on the television in our room and eating room service for lunch. The food isn’t great but I can’t remember ever ordering room service before so it feels kind of decadent and fun.

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It’s about 7pm when my cousins come to pick us up for dinner. We have arranged to meet at some warungs near Simpang Lima (the five roads roundabout that serves as Semarang’s Alun Alun). I ate here last year so know the food is great. We share ayam goreng (Javanese fried chicken) and sop buntut Javanese oxtail soup. It is absolutely delicious! The chicken is salty and the skin is crisp. The oxtail in the soup is so tender.

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There are lit up cars here too like in Yogyakarta. The temptation to ride is too strong. First we take a go with all of us on the pedal cars. We are laughing the whole time, even though one of the chains comes off.

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It’s so much fun.

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Then we switch to a different sort of bike. This one requires someone to pedal passengers around, rather than everyone pedaling. We rent two and set off around the Simpang Lima proper. I let Paul sit in the back of mine and ride him around while my cousin’s son rides his mum and cousins around on another. It’s so childish and silly that I can’t stop laughing.

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You’d think it was difficult to ride the bikes but the gear ratio is favourable and the only reason I break a sweat is because it’s hot here in Semarang.

It was wonderful to spend time with my cousins and their kids. They are great people.

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