Sunday, August 29, 2010

Seafood Feast at Depok

After touring the Sultan's Water Palace, we were all in a water sort of mood and spontaneously decided to head to the ocean for a seafood dinner. We settled into the van for a one hour ride that turned out to be only 40 minutes since our driver drove like a maniac dodging motorbikes right and left. Thankfully, we survived that ride and found ourselves on a relatively uncrowded black sand beach just in time for sunset. We had arrived at the INDIAN OCEAN!

With Anya and Anastasia

Zipping around on an ATV seemed to be the thing to do


I had heard that the seas south of Yogya were rough and they certainly looked it. Thunderous waves crashed in every direction and no one was swimming although there were a few Indonesian guys splashing around, tempting the Queen of the South Seas. I was content to stand at the water's edge and let the warm water and black sand cover my feet as I watched the waves crash and roll. I'm glad Yogya isn't far from the ocean. Depok is one of the closest beaches to the city and Ingrid and Anastasia raved about the fresh seafood market here.

Ingrid selected a tasty sampling of seafood at the market for us to try. We carried our bags of seafood to a little warung on the beach where it was cooked up for us as we walked along the water. We feasted on grilled tuna, fried shrimp, squid, clams, grilled snapper, and crabs. The grilled tuna and the fried shrimp were particularly delicious.

The only dent in my enjoyment of the evening was seeing that there were baby sharks for sale at the seafood market. I was particularly affected by the sight of a baby hammerhead shark. When I was on Bunaken for my rescue diver course, my instructor was a major shark guy who showed all of us a presentation that he does on shark awareness. His gist is that sharks are amazing creatures, not man-eaters, and most importantly, they are the alpha predators of the ocean and without them the oceans will collapse. He detailed the problematic indiscriminate fishing of sharks, particularly in Asia, in a very thoughtful talk. He has reached many people in South East Asia with his presentation but clearly there is a long way to go with environmental education in Indonesia. Seeing a local woman proudly holding up a dead baby hammerhead shark is, sadly, not at all unusual in this part of the world.

Poor baby hammerhead

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