Karwa Bus No. 727….To Nuaija District from Hamad International Airport

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That morning, my desire to went to downtown was so rushed. I couldn’t wait to get a closer look at Doha. But my rush was stopped for a moment, I continued to calculate in detail fo transportation budget which I needed for five days in Qatar. So that I didn’t leave too much of remaining balance in Karwa Smartcard later.

Short breakfast with bread at airport bus terminal.

My calculation decided to top up the balance for about 30 Riyal for entire trip, majority of trip would use city bus. This amount didn’t include Karwa Smartcard price for about 10 Riyal.

Ticketing Vending Machine.
Karwa Smartcard is the only access to enjoy Karwa Bus services.

Avsec: “Hi, No No No….Sir, Sorry, you can’t capture the building”, the South Asian looking officer approached and stopped me when pointing my camera at a side of Hamad International Airport from the airport bus platform.

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry sir….I don’t capture the photo yet, I’m sorry”, I immediately put my Canon EOS M10 into a folding bag.

Avsec: “Nice….Nice”, smiling while shaking his head. “Where will you go?

Me: “I’m waiting for bus no. 727 to Nuaija. Do you know, When it will come?

Avsec: “Oh, you better ask to Karwa Officer….Him (he pointed to a fat officer who was busy with his clipboard)”.

I went to him and asked the status of Karwa Bus No. 727, then he asked me to wait about ten minutes.

Just in time, the bus arrived.

Nervous, my first time in using Qatar city bus. If Dubai, Bahrain and Oman prefer red color for their city buses, Qatar had decided to use green color for it.

I was the first passenger on bus which had just been parked. A few minutes later, one by one, Hamad International Airport workers entered the same bus.

Preparing fo heading to Nuaija District.
A side of Hamad International Airport.

During trip, Karwa Bus slowly and leisurely ran while crossing city’s streets. Like other modes of public transportation in civilized cities, it ensured that every passenger felt safe.

Payment was made by tapping Karwa Smartcard on tap machine which located next to driver. You need to know that steering wheel in Qatar is placed in left side. While there, I entered and got off a bus always from front door. Of course, before getting off from bus, I had to check remaining Karwa Smartcard balance on the same tap machine.

Riding bus for thirty minutes, my eyes continued to stare at all the prints of city’s architecture which was passed, as well as various activities of local people who were observed.

Dropped off at Nuaija intersection.

As soon as I got off from bus, the wind hardly blew against me, carrying soft particles of sand with it. “Is this the taste of desert wind? “, my heart mumbled for a moment. My naked eyes had to be sacrificed to repeatedly hit by soft sand. I couldn’t longer look for my rayban glasses which I didn’t know where I put it in my backpack. The temperature of twelve degrees Celsius forced me to immediately reach Casper Hotel, where I would stay.

Al Emadi Hospital which I passed on the outskirts of D Ring Road.
Fresh flowers grown with hydroponic techniques.

After walking for a kilometer and a half and in twenty minutes, I finally arrived at a hotel Which appeared to be the result of turning a residential complex into a simple inn.

Casper Hotel.

Later I would tell to you how comfortable that simple dormitory is….?

Next Story—->

Karwa Bus No. 727….Menuju Distrik Nuaija dari Hamad International Airport

Pagi itu hasratku menuju pusat kota begitu terburu. Aku sudah tak sabar untuk melihat Doha lebih dekat. Tetapi keterburuanku tertahan sejenak, aku terus menghitung dengan detail budget transportasi yang kubutuhkan selama lima hari di Qatar. Supaya aku tak begitu banyak meninggalkan sisa saldo sia-sia di Karwa Smartcard nanti.

Sarapan sejenak dengan roti tawar kupas di airport bus terminal.

Perhitunganku memutuskan untuk menyuntikkan dana sebesar Rp. 118.000 untuk seluruh perjalanan yang mayoritas akan menggunakan bus kota. Besaran itu belum termasuk harga kartu Karwa Smartcard sebesar Rp. 39.000.

Ticketing Vending Machine.
Karwa Smartcard adalah satu-satunya akses untuk menikmati jasa Karwa Bus.

Avsec: “Hi, No No No….Sir, Sorry, you can’t capture the building”, petugas berwajah Asia Selatan mendekat dan melarangku ketika mengarahkan kamera ke salah satu sisi Hamad International Airport dari platform airport bus.

Aku: “Oh, I’m sorry Sir….I don’t capture yet, I’m sorry”, aku segera memasukkan Canon EOS M10 ke folding bag.

Avsec: “Nice….Nice”, tersenyum sambil menggelengkan kepalanya. “Where will you go?

Aku: “I’m waiting for bus no. 727 to Nuaija. Do you know, When it will come?

Avsec: “Oh, you better ask to Karwa Officer….Him (dia menunjuk ke petugas tambun yang sibuk dengan clip boardnya)”.

Aku beranjak menujunya dan menanyakan status Karwa Bus No 727, lalu dia memintaku untuk menunggu sekitar sepuluh menit.

Tepat waktu, bus itu tiba.

Nervous, pertama kalinya aku menaiki bus kota Qatar. Jika Dubai, Bahrain dan Oman lebih memilih warna merah untuk bus kotanya, maka Qatar memutuskan menggunakan warna hijau untuk itu.

Akulah penumpang pertama pada bus yang baru saja terparkir itu. Beberapa menit kemudian, satu persatu pekerja Hamad International Airport memasuki bus yang sama.

Bersiap menuju Distrik Nuaija.

Walau aku dilarang mengabadikan salah satu sisi bandara oleh aviation security tadi….Namun pada akhirnya, aku tetap mencuri gambarnya dari dalam bus….Dasar backpacker ngeyel….Hahaha.

Cekrek….Itulah bangunan bandara yang kuincar sejak tadi.

Selama menaikinya, Karwa Bus berjalan pelan nan santai saat membelah jalanan kota. Layaknya moda transportasi umum di kota-kota beradab lainnya yang memastikan setiap penumpang merasa aman.

Pembayaran dilakukan dengan men-tap Karwa Smartcard di tap machine sebelah sopir. Perlu kamu ketahui bahwa kemudi kendaraan di Qatar ditempatkan di sisi kiri. Sedangkan selama di sana, aku memasuki dan menuruni bus selalu dari pintu depan. Tentu sebelum menuruni bus, aku wajib mengecek saldo Karwa Smartcard yang tersisa di tap machine yang sama.

Menunggang bus selama tiga puluh menit, mataku terus lekat memandangi segala cetak arsitektur kota yang terlalui, juga dengan beragam aktivitas warga yang teramati.

Diturunkan di Nuaija intersection.

Begitu turun dari bus, angin meniup tubuhku dengan kencangnya, membawa partikel-partikel lembut pasir bersamanya. “Inikah rasa angin gurun? “, hati bergumam seketika. Mata telanjangku terpaksa terkorbankan untuk berkali-kali diterjang pasir-pasir lembut itu. Aku tak sanggup lagi mencari kacamata rayban yang entah kutaruh di sebelah mana dalam backpack. Suhu dua belas derajat celcius memaksaku untuk segera mencapai Casper Hotel, tempatku menginap.

Al Emadi Hospital yang kulewati di pinggiran D Ring Road.
Bunga segar yang tumbuh dengan teknik hidroponik.

Setelah berjalan sejauh satu setengah kilometer dan dalam waktu dua puluh menit, akhirnya aku tiba di hotel yang tampak sebagai hasil menyulap kompleks perumahan menjadi sebuah penginapan sederhana.

Casper Hotel.

Nanti kuceritakan bagaimana nyamannya dormitory sederhana itu….