Glimpses of Purwakarta: Part 1

This weekend, my boy friend, Rival, invited me to his hometown, Purwakarta. With “Istimewa Jaya Buana” as its slogan, the small but serene district shines the first time our car landed on its very ground. It somehow glows among the dull contour of other surrounding cities in Google Maps, knowing the last time I visited Purwakarta was on elementary school recess period. My memories of it wore away already by the time I came there for the second time.

Along with three Rival’s best friends, Lia, Tiara, and Mira, we chose Situ Wanayasa as our first destination. It was a 45-minute trip by car. The rain slightly poured by the time we boarded off, but our excitement endured.

Situ Wayanasa

In Bahasa Indonesia, “situ” means a lake, and Wanayasa is the area where the lake is located, therefore Situ Wanayasa (Wanayasa Lake). From the parking area, we had to take a stroll in the main part of the street to get closer to the lake. And as we strolled farther, a landscape of water spread across our eyes. Also apparent was a beautiful island in the middle of the lake, packaged by a flock of pine trees where the body of one of Purwakarta’s founders (I can’t remember the name) is lain.

Roby, our driver, said that the lake used to have this “bebek-bebekan” (a small boat in the form of ducks, ridden by paddling the cycles) but, by the time we got there, there was none to be found. He went on to say that the tourists loved to do sightseeing around the lake using that vehicle, simply because it only costs Rp 3.000 for a person. However, as the rain traced our paths, we spent an hour there taking photos and “ngiyuhan” (a Sundanese word I recently just learned meaning “sheltering”) at one of the bale-s nearby.

Left to Right: Rival – Mira – Lia – Tiara – myself

In the afternoon, about 4 pm, although not as tired as the sun, we decided to go back home, to Rival’s house. We didn’t want to exhaust ourselves because after Maghrib, Rival had another plan: watching a fountain show! The rain still pertained to go down, so did my energy. I took a 3-minute nap because Rival’s dad woke me up for dinner. On the other hand, the girls could still keep up their eyes open. Well, probably because they didn’t want to look drowsy on the camera. He he.

After praying maghrib together, Roby came with a brand new look to the house. He picked us up on 7 pm, and there were already a massive crowd standing in lines right at the second destination: Taman Air Mancur Sri Baduga. It was dubbed the biggest fountain in Southeast Asia, and many people from Tangerang, Surabaya, Malang, and other neighboring areas crave to come and watch the 30-minute water-and-LED-combined show.

As we queued, we struggled to avoid our umbrellas (for it’s still raining, even harder) from other people’s from clashing. This is simply because when they clash, the water from the rain that’s stuck above it, would fall and destroy our outfit, which was not good for a photo later. Haha. For about to 25 minutes, we had to wait for the first-batch, and all we could hear was this MC who kept advising us to keep in order while waiting and make sure that our wallets were not stolen.

Waterplay on the Fountain Show Sri Baduga

When it came for our turn, after another 30 minute of waiting, the show finally ran. A bright flash of white light dominated our sight with an echoing “pop” sound that reminded me of a horror movie trailer. Suddenly, a deep, deep voice reverberated out of the speakers, saying “Wilujeng Sumping. Sampurasun?” (Sundanese phrases meaning “Welcome. How are you?”), then followed in Bahasa Indonesia and English respectively. Then, the harmonious sounds of gamelan started to crawl. As the last “gong” was played, a 10-metre spur of water was seen in the middle of all. And all the audience muttered a soft “wow”.

With the attractive play of LEDs and laser, the fountain show was nothing but a joy for the eyes. At times, the songs changed, from traditional, catchy Sundanese welcoming songs to those of Maroon Five and Bruno Mars. The faster the beats, the more attractive the water turned out to play. For almost half of the show, it was inevitable for the audience not to nod their heads, shadowing the rhythm of the songs while seeing the waters repeatedly squirted in front of their eyes.

Left to Right: me – Mira – Tiara – Lia. We stole time in the middle of the show to take pictures, as everybody else did. :p

Most of the audience would fiddle with their smartphones, getting ready of their “Live” Instagram feature, Snapchat, or video recorder to capture the moment. I would say that I got bored in the middle of the show because the water play’s pattern was monotonous. Instead, I took advantage of my boredom by asking the girls to take some pictures, and it turned out quite cool!

After the show, on the way to our parking area, we ran into this beautiful part of a lone street where there were hung lanterns above. Roby said that the street led to the regent’s house, which means that we were standing in a presidential housing area.

Roby and I, after the show.
The two girls trying to make a “gapura” pose for Princess Tiara. Meanwhile, I was lighting them to avoid flash from the camera.

Our first day in Purwakarta was an unexpectedly joyful moment to share. One that sinks in my mind and is hoped to endure as long as it could. However, this is not the end. The journey continues to our second day, which is also our last. See you on the next post, fellas! 🙂


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