Lounging by the lake & smiling til our jaws ache!

Trip Start Sep 09, 2007
Trip End Ongoing

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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

We had been told great things about Lake Toba the last time we were in Sumatra, so this time around we put it on the 'must-do' list.
Our first impressions of the Lake was that this was a peaceful atmospheric place where relaxation was hard to avoid.

After checking into a beautiful room complete with porch over looking the lake and Kate and Darren booked in next door, we were all ready for a hard-earned rest after that trek.

Lake Toba is one of the world's largest lakes, also it's the only lake with a lake within a lake in the world. (interesting facts for you!) The lake is formed from a volcanic crater and is a staggering 450 metres deep - needless to say we didn't go in it - it had things jumping out of it all the time and all I wanted to know is how the hell did they get in there in the first place??!

'Casino Ryan', a young lad from Canada who plays A LOT of cards for BIG money entertained us one evening, teaching us poker skills and tricks. We then all stupidly played him at a couple of games and each lost 40 grand............ in Rupiah! (2 pounds to me and you).
But I learnt one thing, only play Craig at poker - it's easier to win!!!

After a few days relaxing around the lake enjoying the picturesque scenery, Tom even did a bit of fishing - he only caught some seaweed mind you!
We then met Dave and Jen one day out at lunch. Dave and Jen are a really nice funny couple who seem to like taking the piss out of each other - much to mine and Tom's amusement! Dave reminds me of a mix between John and Gazzie D: John because of his sarcastic wit and general piss taking of everyone and anything and Gazzie D because he has the same mannerisems - so therefore I've taken an instant dislike to the bloke (not really, the likeness freaked me out at first but now I love it!)

On our way back we met a local man, 'Mr. James' who we got talking to on the bus and found out he was an English teacher. Mr James told us how his nursing students loved having English people to learn from and interact with, then he asked us if we (Tom, Kate, Darren and I) would mind coming to sit in on a lesson to answer any questions his students had and to help them with their English language - so of course we said yes!
We got off the bus and into a mini bus and made our way to the academy. As we pulled up all you could see was teenage girls running around like headless chickens and screaming to one another that we were here...
Tom walked into the classroom first and greeted the girls with a hand wave and 'hello' - I was still outside at this time but all I could hear was the loudest screaming and cheering, I later found out this was just because of the 'hello' and nothing more...!!
As we walked in one by one the cheering and clapping got louder and louder. We were all placed on chairs at the front of the classroom and it was then the photos began!! Mr James had nipped to the toilet and left the classroom unmanned so the girls ALL (30+ of them) started getting out their mobile phones and taking our photos. So I did the same....

When he came back the lesson finally started - first we had to introduce ourselves which didn't really make a difference as we became known as Miss Jolly and Mr Tom (not Tom Cruise!). He then told them that we were 'real authetic people from England, so no nonsense, no tomatoes, no bullshit!' (er ok!)
An hour of questions flew by but answering them became increasingly difficult as the same question was being asked but just reworded a little...
'What are your feelings about North Sumatra?' 'What were your first impressions about North Sumatra?' 'What have you enjoyed most in North Sumatra?' "What do you think about North Sumatra?'!!!! Then to top it all off one girl at the back stood up and asked us 'Who discovered your country?' Tom resisted the urge to say Bobby Moore and then we all admitted we didn't know. (sad but true, Mick?)
Another of the different questions involved asking Tom "Mr Tom please don't be angry with me, but are you dating Miss Jolly?" He responded with a "yes" and the room exploded with cheers, clapping and screams...crazy!

After all the questions we were asked if we minded a few photographs being taken, so they began in the classroom and then outside, where loads of girls were hanging over the balconies to catch a glimspe of the 'authentic English people'!! . All the girls felt the need to take our photos more than once: alone, alone with them, with their friends, in groups, you get the picture.... One girl braved it and asked Mr Tom to put his arm around her, well, this was it, mayhem - the photos began all over again!!! Over half an hour of jaw ache and finally we said our goodbyes, what a day, one we are all sure to remember.
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Jean on

what a funny experience with those students! Indonesians are actually very friendly to foreigners... :)

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