Saturday, 25 August 2012

Toraja Part Two.

Picking up on the third day of my visit to Toraja, we were in for a slightly simpler one around the town.. We hit the biggest local market, where it was livestock day. I tried really hard not to empathise and settled for just taking photos and gawping like a tourist.

Dress & Belt - New Look; Shoes - Primark; Earrings - Forever 21.

This is one of my favourite outfits from the whole holiday because the dress is so light, pretty, floaty and flattering. The super cute tomato print just screamed SS'12, and it was perfect for visiting a market! I got lots of compliments from the locals - always a boost to your self esteem. This was one of the days I felt most myself too because I had my hair (half) down and some lipstick on!

Market day.
New-found love for buffaloes awakening..
The most impressive horns of the day.

On Day Four the cultural trips recommenced and our Torajan odyssey continued with Londa & Tampangallo. Getting out there was easy enough and the sites were incredible. They were both cave burial sites that were creepy in part, yet respectful and fascinating. Getting back from the sites was a different story - the limited transport meant that we ended up walking about 10k before hitching a ride on a passing cement truck..

Top & Skirt - New Look; Shoes, Bag & Headband - River Island; Necklace - Accessorize; Earrings - River Island.

I loved this outfit too, especially the light and floaty skirt. The print clash was one of my staple style statements for this holiday and I enjoyed mixing the strong tribal print with a softer floral one. Not going to lie though, I felt a little awkward posing here by the burial caves.

First glance at Londa.
I guess they do it a little differently here..
The tau-tau are ready for their close up!
Inside at Tampangallo
Standing guard?
The intrepid explorer surveys her route..
Love and kisses, Tara xox

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Toraja - Part One.

This next destination is going to be spun out into several parts, since we spent 6 days there and there was just so much to see and do! Toraja is an area, like a county or something, that has a lot of tribal history and tradition, making it probably the most visited place on the island of Sulawesi. That doesn't mean it was overrun by tourists though!

Arriving on the first morning, fresh (but not with it) off an 8 hour night bus the first thing we noticed was how much less developed it was there in Toraja. We were staying in Rantepao, and it felt like we were the only tourists around! We weren't quite, but it was close.. And there wasn't even a 7-eleven! We spent the first day resting, aka mooching around town to recover from the night bus.

Top - Topshop; Skirt & Belt - New Look; Shoes, Bag & Bracelet - Primark; Earrings - River Island.

My pink maxi has finally been taken up (thankyou mum!) & was christened on holiday. First of all I paired it with a neutral batwing top and a casual topknot for a simple, breezy holiday look. In a strange way I found myself settling into the 'less-is-more' aesthetic here, and not minding being covered up..

Gorgeous fruit snack.
The view from the hotel.
My favourite mie kuah (noodle soup) for lunch!
This is almost too photogenic..
Day Two in Toraja was a little more hectic - we had organised a day trip to see traditional houses, grave sites and a funeral ceremony. It was stunning weather again, and it was almost too picturesque in places. I'll admit, being shown burial sites is a little strange, and so is sitting in at a funeral.

Skirt - New Look; Shirt, Bag & Shoes - Primark; Earrings - River Island.

I wasn't exactly sure about what to wear to a Torajan funeral, so I covered up even more.. This time I styled my maxi skirt with a black shirt and simple accessories. The skirt was a big hit with the locals at the funeral!

Traditional Torajan houses, with temporary wedding structures.
Stunning countryside.
A cave burial site, complete with wooden carved figures (tau tau).
I won't make you guess what happened to this poor buffalo..
The cutest kids in traditional dress for the funeral.
Love and kisses, Tara xox

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Moving On To Makassar.

Just a short flight (comparatively) from Jakarta is Makassar, a city on the island of Sulawesi. It is the main gateway to this island since it actually has an airport that is up and running. Although it is still fairly westernised with plenty of little minimarket type shops and a Dunkin' Donuts, we noticed a distinct lack of other foreigners..

On Day 1 in Makassar we flew in, arriving late in the afternoon with just enough time to check out the old Dutch Fort Rotterdam before watching sunset. The only downside to picking the best and most popular sunset-watching location was that everyone else there seemed more interested by the tourists - we even got filmed by an Indonesian TV station.

Dress & Earrings - Forever 21; Shoes, Bag & Bracelet - Primark.

Taking in the gorgeous blue sky and crumbling fort, I decided to have a mini shoot and pose a bit.. I adored this dress because the bright colour is holiday perfect and the embellishment adds tribal interest. By this point holiday hair was kicking in, so I threw it into a simple side plait. While I was posing there were a few people watching, but apparently the word "model" was thrown around in their conversation, so I am going to take the positives. Oh, if only I were a foot taller!

Inside the fort.
Sunset - I've seen better.
On Day Two in Makassar we struggled with dubious local transport to an older part of the town, before doing it in reverse and dawdling around.. We watched sunset again, after helping an awful lot of school kids out with English projects.

Top - New Look; Shorts - Blue Miss; Bag & Shoes - Primark; Necklace - Accessorize; Heart Earring - River Island; Ear Cuff - H&M.

This set of photos was taken while we wandered along the seafront, and my posing attracted a fair bit of attention... I opted for denim shorts and a bright tribal vest, accessorized with bright blue eyeliner and an ear cuff to add a playful edge. My hair was just shoved up into a messy bun to complete the not-totally-practical look. The Muslim acceptance of shorts is limited, and that top gave me some severe tan lines..

Some of the many school kids we helped.
In a Muslim cemetery.
Take me to my third world Alice in Wonderland..

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Thursday, 16 August 2012


The first hit on my holiday was Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia. It is on the island of Java and is fairly westernised - meaning that in some areas you can't move for McDonalds, 7-Eleven, KFC and Starbucks. After arriving in the evening we literally crashed into the hostel, found some dinner, then tried to sleep off the insanely long journey. We were in transit well over a day, and I barely slept because aeroplanes are uncomfortable..

The next day we staggered down and out for some sightseeing, going to the monument and the old Dutch area, and just generally exploring.

Top - Forever 21; Skirt & Sunglasses - H&M; Shoes, Bag & Headband - Primark; Necklace - Topshop; Earrings - River Island.

My first on-location outfit was a little haphazard. I still managed a good clash of tribal prints, toned down with some neutral accessories and a simple ponytail. This was taken on the roof of my hostel, and I am loving the sun!

The monument dwarfed me.
Reaching up proudly.
Being awkward.
Holiday selfies with Mum.
Look closer..
Lunch - mie goreng sayur (fried noodles with vegetables), yum.
The drink of the holiday - ice tea.
Falling into disrepair.
Chinese temple lanterns.
Nasi goreng sayur (fried rice with vegetables) for dinner.
And some tofu/tempe to share.

Love and kisses, Tara xox

NEWSFLASH: Today was results day and I got AABB, and a place at Birmingham University for September 2013!!