Road Trip Reflections: Starting on a New Journey

Have you ever felt so grateful for what you have now? Grateful for all you’ve been through in the journey of life. And now you’re ready for a new beginning.


Given a chance for a short vacation, my friends and I chose to travel by car to several cities in Java, Indonesia. We decided to take a road trip since it was a safer option during the pandemic and we could avoid social contact with others wherever possible. We had planned to stop by some cities along the way and I found that it would be the perfect opportunity to make some memories while on the road.

I get the sense that everyone is waiting for COVID situation to end. With public activity restrictions loosening up in Indonesia, some travellers are cautiously coming out for fresh air as well. We met them along the way. Thankfully, many places still apply safety measures and strict health protocols. 

Starting the Journey

(Photo credit: Hessy Trishandiani)

That morning, we’re heading to the first stop in West Java, a city called Bandung. It’s a beautiful morning when I drove the car along the toll road. Seeing the empty road with a beautiful scenery in the distance, it felt so soothing. Shining roads, blue skies and lush greeneries are the perfect combination. This was a much needed escape into the lap of nature to fill up our lungs with some fresh air. I felt so blessed.


I drove for a couple of hours from one city to another city. The weather changed from a bright sunny morning to a downpour in the evening. It was quite a challenge to drive at night in foggy weather. The thick fog descended on the long and winding roads; some areas were so dark that the only thing we could depend on was our car lights. I recited Bismillah to seek Allah’s protection.

There is no such thing as a smooth ride. Sometimes Google maps guided us somewhere and we’d get lost along the road. With minimal lighting, we had to drive with extreme care along the edge of a cliff. It took almost an hour to find the locals, and alhamdulillah, finally we met people who were willing to help and gave us the right directions.

Apart from getting lost, we realised that there’s something wrong with the car’s brake. So we decided to stop at a small city, Banyuwangi, and stayed for a night to get some rest and check the car’s condition. Alhamdulillah, everything turned out just fine. We continued the trip the next morning and finally arrived safely at our destination.

The road trip felt much like the journey of life. The roads will not always be smooth and we will encounter many challenges to conquer. But like the trip, there will be moments of ease. For my friends and I, they came in the form of strangers who give us directions when we’re lost and hospitable locals who told us stories about the town and even gave us recommendations for tourist attractions.

That’s how life is, isn’t it? Throughout life, we meet new people and some of them will give us advice, insights and even lessons. Every journey of life always starts with a new beginning and is filled with hardships, joys, celebrations and special moments. Some of the challenges will test our courage, strengths, weaknesses and even faith, but those will ultimately lead us to our destination. Our purpose in life.

Let’s take a moment to say Bismillah to every new beginning and may Allah bless us always, In Shaa Allah.

PS: During this trip, we were all vaccinated and always practised social distancing. We also wore masks in all the places we visited, even in the car. Adhering to health protocols is our duty and the best way to protect each other and every person we met during the trip.

Written by: Hessy Trishandiani