I caught wind of the KIFAC 2019 (Kepri International Field Archery Championships from Mike Song, the man behind Excella Archery Pro Shop and took the opportunity to shoot in Batam, one of the islands in the Riau Archipelago.
We registered for the shoot before heading off to Japan for our break. Michelle had never shot field before and was unfamiliar with the rules. I took some time to explain to her about the scoring system and all the necessary information about this archery discipline.
The entrance fee was 300,000 IDR (RM89) and payment has to be done via Telegraphic Transfer to the organizer's bank account. I did this via on-line banking and it was not a hassle at all.
Upon returning from Japan, Michelle was really busy with work. I had a couple of days to get the paperwork done for bringing out our archery equipment and getting the ferry ticket purchased. Our plan was to drive down to Johor Bahru and take a ferry across to Batam.
To the uninitiated, Batam is located across the Singapore Straits and can actually be seen from it's Northernmost tip.
The KIFAC 2019 tournament was held at the Indah Puri Golf Resort. To get things going, I booked our stay at Batam Centre and it takes about 30-minutes to get to the golf resort where the tournament was held.
|Getting ready to board the ferry from Puteri Harbour near Iskandar Puteri|
|Downtown Singapore as seen from our boat's window|
Not everything had turned out as planned. Before we boarded our ferry, I received a call from Booking.com informing us that our room was canceled due to overbooking. This was done at the very last-minute and sounded really suspicious. The company's customer service said they will replace the room with a hotel that has the "equal quality".
|The replacement hotel in Nagoya Business Centre, Batam|
|Our "executive suite"|
As a rule of thumb, double-check offers that are "too good to be true". I checked out the hotel in Batam Centre called "Capital O" on Booking.com that came highly-rated.
For four nights, the rates were 1.23mil IDR which came up around RM360.00 for the whole stay. I thought it was a great offer which turned out to be a real nightmare.
We were redirected to Nagoya Hills, located some 5km away from Batam Centre. Even when we had arrived at the ferry terminal, there was a turf war between taxi drivers and ride-hailing services. To get where we wanted, we had to drag our suitcase for nearly half a kilometer before boarding a Toyota Avanza. The ride costs about 39,000 IDR and the driver wanted everything. He was reluctant to give the loose change. I insisted and was given a stare. Well, fuck him!
The room, as it has turned out, was rather run-down. The only thing that kept us going was the air conditioning and hot shower that worked. I had Michelle to thank for not being fussy about being stuck in a real adventure situation.
In most parts of Indonesia, smoking is permitted in hotel rooms. We had a real raw deal and had to contend with cigarette-stained furniture and a musty smelling room.
Kuala Lumpur and Singapore prices...
If you plan to eat out and have a couple of beers, be prepared to pay the rates as we did at home.
We ended up at a place called "Dju Dju Baru", a Chinese restaurant. We ordered three dishes: Fish soup, Fried Bittergourd with egg and Botok, the local otak-otak. We also had two large bottles of Bintang Beer and the bill came up to 203,000 IDR (RM60.80). The beers chalked up nearly half the price of our dinner. Later, we found out about a food court near the Nagoya City Walk that serves Beer Bintang at 33,000 IDR (RM9.78).
Our first night in Batam was done after a meal. Nagoya, for starters, is an entertainment district on the island. There are many sleazy bars surrounding our hotel. I was in such a bad shape, it didn't take long for me to crash...
Sounds like invisible hands to move u near to sleazy hotels. Lol
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