This day would be the final lap in our round-trip from Padang back to Padang. Quite a number of my cycling tours were arranged in this manner, i.e. returning to the starting place, so long as I did not take the same route back to where I started.
The advantage was in ending the trip at a familiar place, and at the same hotel. More importantly, I could leave the bicycle bag which weighed 2kg at the hotel. One might think 2kg is nothing. On a fully laden bicycle, any kg we could shave off is a bonus. Of course, a bigger bonus would be to shave off the extra kgs from our own tummy!
We left the hotel 10 mins before 7, after breakfast. The street was almost empty. The only people up and about were parents sending their kids to school, or kids walking to schools.
We did not expect anything exciting to see on this last lap and we actually covered the 60kms quite fast. We did however, as usual, stop for lunch at quite an upmarket Rumah Makan Lamun Ombak. This restaurant is a popular stop for tourist buses and travellers. It is clean and could sit in excess of 100 customers. The name "Lamun Ombak" struck me as not quite in place as this restaurant is not located anywhere near the sea. If it had been "Lambong Ombak" we would not have stopped here for lunch. We would not want to throw out what we ate kerana dilambong ombak!
Anyway, after 6 days of Nasi Padang we settled in for a change. We opted for Murtabak Mesir. We were happy with our choice but we were not really in the mood to ask the origin of Murtabak Mesir.
At the outskirts of Padang, the usual noise, dust and vehicles welcomed us back to the city. We wished we were back in the hills of Danau Maninjau, with its fresh air and crystal clear streams. Wishful thinking!
Padang hosts an annual international dragon boat race. We have plenty of time to kill. We have not seen a dragon boat race.
The venue was one of the river channels that lead out to the sea. We spent about 30 mins here before making our way back to Hotel Jakarta. The room we stayed on our arrival was taken up by a Malaysian contingent participating in the boat race. So they offered to upgrade us to a larger room, giving us a IR50,000 rebate.
There was really nothing much more to do except to kill time loitering around the city.
The bikes went back into the bike bags, ready for the journey home after serving its masters well for the last 7 days.
Overall, it was another successful trip. I got to revisit the Minangkabau region for a second time and my brother got a first hand experience of Minangkabau culture. His second trip would be arranged with his family. Good family man he is!
For those planning similar cycling tours, here are some ballpark figures we spent for the entire trip:
Accomodation : IR1,630,000
Transport : IR 180,000
Food (for 2) : IR 650,000