Solo City: Spirit of Java

Solo City (Surakarta)
Spirit of Java

When a capital city situated at the edge of land, it might be the mouth of entrance where civilization triggers to always grow. I can easily spot myriad of cities within the region, Jakarta for instance where story begun for harbor placement opening the way to start a new age of living. Mentioning some other cities such as Makassar, Malacca, Singapore, and so forth are likely reasonable to consider city with shoreline border remains huge chance to evolve even much further. But, I myself have to trace subtitute excuse the civilization even far before the years built by inner land indigenous with their own treasure. Perhaps they don’t have kayak nor do even big ship, but they have something audacious resource to enliven aspiration. By their own way of tradition and culture, a civilization formed through the time meanwhile history always records falling and growing which is just around to surround. It reminds me Borobudur, the remaining remnant of Syeilendra Dynasti stands robustly today revealing the glory of the past. Though no one can persist to estimate the heir and their grand-heir how they would be at present. After all, the new kingdom born to proliferate and by the succession of the following Sultanate the phase always turns and keep moving. Today merely very few of Sultanate can be found over archipelago, some others burried and overlayed by the new modern government. When the country turns into Republic, everything else is massively changed and so are the people. Seemingly there has no absolute persistance to preserve old realm, the day flies many things turning something new, something fresh, and looking revolutionary for most futuristic mind.

Main road viewed from cross-bridge

Solo or ethnically claimed as Surakarta breaks the exception. It is a truth modernization just follows behind the tradition of their own faith but it’s still enough resisted to exist by their own way, straddling modernization and local faith to Sultanate influence in the meantime. I made some steps crossing over well-managed pedestrian path in heart of city few miles to Kraton (Sultanate Palace). It was not the first time though at least after twice visits within a couple year. I came in the meantime I was in charged for university program in Klaten regency, the neighbouring regency situated by fortune between Solo Sultanate and Yogyakarta.

Florists flocking to line at the fringe of main road

Over the fringe of the mile-long street, I have no more complaining but stunning with its growth in which development is triggering. It's not like Jakarta, either fairly incomparable since Solo is not a crowded capital of a country, yet it is home of cultural touch standing together harmoniously with modern feature in addition. Florist stores are among colorful buildings after step to step. I proved little European portrait plays on it. Not far from there, eatery stores lined after block of other buildings next to. They offer variously from oriental tastes to Italian pizza, not to missing American style -its fastfoods-. At steamy noon some tourists walk over with full piled up bag, common style in which western take long trip. 

Taman Sriwedari at heart of Solo

 They are such tidy. The city seemingly has automatically ruled their life by their own unique way as many thank to Mayor who successfully transformed Solo into more fascinating. When I was thinking Jogja is another place where I can visit several times, I need to reconsider my decision again by putting Solo on my list instead. But they are not each fighting against, nothing to conquer. Each of them is complement. They are sister. But Solo seems to chase more faster within next decades. Its magic has attracted investor to come in which subsequent impact inevitably people would love to come, to shop, to feel, or even to stay. 

Few years ago students from my hometown still prefered Jogja as study destination, now Solo has been presented as another path. The number seems still growing though I have no statistical evidence, at least I have more friends here are staying in the city. Public transportation always try their best to serve better. Public place is another charming venue for whom breathe deeply the breeze. I love their taxy particularly. It's no longer merely Sedan type existing spreading the road, Medium size cab color the paved way. If you lost your way, just call them and wait for some minutes after confirming current position. Or just ask people around you where to go, they would love to assist. There might be the spirit of city's hospitality.

At the end of the straight path, I just turned right to approach Kraton at heart of the city. It was so sunny yet felt warm. Many visitors come from various place, some as I heard their conversation are from Jakarta and even Batam. They obviously know the heritage just never changed and properly to be visited. Just like me.

2 Response to Solo City: Spirit of Java

July 25, 2012 at 3:27 PM

A fine post in praise of Solo.

Coincidentally my wife ( who stayed with our son In Jakarta last month) spent almost a week in Solo. Her account and yours are about the same - it is a city perfectly matching tradition and progress. And everybody seems to be convinced Jokowi has been crucial to bring about recent achievements.

July 26, 2012 at 9:41 AM

What a coincidence!
Thank you Colson

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