The debate of choice was quickly over by my own authority. “Don’t be obedient to backpacker art, Donny. This is an business trip, just take facility advantage, take a taxi! ”, I firmly thought to defeated some stupid options which sometimes sporadically appeared in my attitudes and choices.
“Oh, thrifty man“, my colleagues joked, that’s brand which is embedded to me. How come?. Every time I leave the airport, I always automatically think that taking a bus was only a quarter of taxi cost. So I always linger waiting for catch bus to downtown.
Almost Maghrib time….
My phone kept ringing from my colleague who was doing a training rehearsel session in Bukit Semarang Baru (BSB) area. Without hesitation I picked up my smartphone, it turned out that he just wanted to tell me that I better directly go to hotel, because the rehearsel would be complete in fifteen minutes.
Five minutes in queueing to got a taxi service ticket for USD 3.7, I was immediately directed to a taxi. A simple middle-aged driver jogged to pick me up. “Assalamu’alaikum. Where are you going, sir? ”he asked with smile and then brought my cardboard box on his left shoulder and carried two roll up banners in his right hand.
As usual, my beloved backpack still never leaves me, with me it was entering from front door. I read ID Card board which was pasted on the dashboard.
“Do you a resident here , Sir Ari?“, I opened conversation while putting on safety belt and then skied together to hotel.
“Oh no sir, I am from Pekalongan City. Where were you come from, sir? ”He replied as he slowly stepped on pedal out of airport area.
“I’m from the capital, Sir. How long have you been working in Semarang? Is Semarang a busy city?“, dialogue smoothly flowed to warm the situation.
“It was only been three years, Mr. Donny. Previously I worked in Jakarta, because of my son had graduated from school, so I moved to Semarang to be close to home”, he cheerfully said controlling his white taxi leaving Tambakharjo area.
“Office assignment, Sir Donny?“, He asked like investigating….Hahaha.
“Yes, if it’s not an office assignment, I usually take airport bus, Sir. Does this airport have airport bus service to downtown, Sir? “, I asked for looking for a reference.
“Yes, there is Trans Semarang BRT (Bus Rapid Transit). It’s cheap, only USD 0.3 for one way, Sir”, He explained.
It had been a long time, I didn’t use an airport taxi service. So that I really enjoy 20 minutes to enjoy it….Thank you to my beloved office for this opportunity.
Slowly, taxi turned right, starting to passed at Yos Sudarso Street, heading south. I moved from new construsction road with concrete barrier to two-lane road on each section, is bordered as high as its sidewalk and many shady trees on each left side.
In twenty minutes, with a distance of six kilometers, I arrived at The Azana Hotel Airport. I handed over USD 7.5 to Mr. Ari. I purposely gave more this trip cost and shared kindness to him….Self-conscious, when I’m backpacking, I rarely gave more for trip cost….Hahahaha.
Let’s see in the next four days, What did Semarang have?