Port window of an inter island ferry in indonesia, between sumbawa and lombok.

Gili T

Oh god damn I’m hung over. Fuck this place, there’s no way I’m getting stuck in this tourist trap for the week. I caught the last boat in and I’m gonna catch the first boat out.

You see the swell of the decade is heading our way and is threatening to stop all boats and ferries. First things first. Sort my headache out with some hair of the dog and cruise down to the docks to see if this forsaken swell has arrived.

The island is small but has no notable land marks. So getting to the docks didn’t prove to be challenging but getting back to the hostel proved to be well so, after the detour to pick up some missing bits and pieces scattered from a messy night.

Time is of the essence, but this fucking hangover is weighing me down dramatically (I have a sympathy headache just writing this), preventing me from running or moving fast in any shape or form. But I’ll be damned if it damns me to any longer on this island than absolutely necessary. A couple wrong turns and couple of helpful locals land me up at my doorstep.

Speed pack, speed pay, speed out of there. Lucky me, the ferry is just about ready to leave as I arrive at the office. The ocean rocks the boat wildly from side to side, every now and then sending a shower of salt water over its haul.

Arriving in port, the full effect of my morning beer becomes noticeable, as the only thing left swaying is me. Further rocking me is the discovery that the motor storage dude that commissioned my bike’s stay, didn’t actually work at the place, but took advantage of the pressing time constraints in catching the last boat to Gili T to rip me off, good and well.

Making it to the next ferry presented little in the way of challenges or memorable moments. It was fast an loose. Unlike the ferry itself. Which was slow and tightly packed.

As you can imagine, this is not ideal in a tropical midday heat. So to avoid it, I meander down into the cargo hold. Its pretty cool down here, not just in terms of the breeze. There are guys napping here and there on top of their trucks. One group of which, invites me to join. Given the alternative I gladly accept.

It’s a welcome change to hang and chat with the 17 year old truck packers a bit. They are working because they need to earn money for personal reasons. The most romantic of which is saving up for a wedding. You see because marriage happens early here in Indonesia.

After some joking around and a couple selfies, which also happen early here in Indo, we settle down for a nap. I must say, these guys that come hang out in the cargo hold are onto something. It’s quieter, cooler and more spacious.

This is re-emphasised, when I return upstairs to disembark and get stuck there due to the swell hitting. What a debacle, it’s just about boiling over to Lord of the Flies social disintegration. Well… by that I mean there was some passive aggressive changes of the volume on the music system. Until the signal decided there’d be none at all, kinda ‘parent-y’ case of serendipity.

As the tide swung enough to negate the swells negative effects we were finally allowed to feel dry land. Sweet, let’s hit it. At this rate I should get to the hostel, after two hours of driving, at about midnight. Erm nope. Let’s see, no open fuel stations, plenty of roadblocks and a couple dodgy driving situations caused suitable delay. But at this point that’s becoming much of a muchness.

The point here I think boys and girls, is that perhaps the stoic practice of expecting the worst to negate surprise and disappointment is not a half bad traveling philosophy.

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