Oceans Eleven

Trip Start Aug 17, 2008
Trip End Aug 16, 2009

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Flag of Indonesia  , East Nusa Tenggara,
Saturday, June 6, 2009

During the short 30 minute boat trip back from Gili islands to Lombok we got talking to some people and had to make a quick decision. We could head back to Bali as planned or we could head off on this amazing sounding 4 day boat trip that these people had just told us about. It was a very rushed decision and we were very unprepared with 2 dead camera batteries, one full memory card, no clean clothes and not enough cash to pay for the trip. Luckily all issues got resolved just in time....except the clean clothes but we were gonna be living in our swimming togs and not showering for the next few days so who cared.
So we set off on a b*s across Lombok island to catch our boat, picking up provisions along the way such as pineapples, rice, noodles, eggs, vegetables and 2 live chickens strapped to the front of the bus. When we arrived at the harbour there were two boats, both with a capacity of 20 but luckily there were only 11 people on each, which was plenty. They were very simple with 2 living areas - upstairs for sleeping and downstairs for everything else. So we loaded up our stuff, sorted out some sleeping mats and positions, met the crew and Yoyo our guide, and set off east for Flores.
The trip turned out to be amazing with 4 days of unbelievable snorkeling along the way and meeting lots of Komodo dragons on the last 2 days. The food was surprisingly good and the chickens disappeared at some stage. We played cards when we could with our fellow passengers who were all really sound. There was one horribly rough night at sea though, worse than a Saturday night out in Ballinasloe during the fair. The waves were massive and neverending but Yoyo and the lads got us through OK even though we found out the next day it was touch and go for a while. Nobody got any sleep and there was some projectile vomiting into the sea (not us luckily but our beer supplies were wasted). It was all quickly forgotten the next day though with the best snorkeling any of us had ever seen. Stingrays, lion fish, blue starfish, trumpet fish, clown fish, clams, box fish, massive shoals of huge fish, and brilliantly coloured coral.
As if that wasn't enough excitement for one day, the next stop was Komodo island to meet the dragons. The Komodo dragon is the biggest lizard in the world and can only be found on a small group of islands in Indonesia, the largest of which is Komodo island. They grow to 3 metres long and are extremely dangerous. They feed on the buffalo, deer and wild pigs that roam the islands and occasionally on unfortunate humans. We got to see them up close but they didn't move much until a ranger threw a football at one and he was up in a flash strutting around flicking his tongue.
On our last night, with the anchors down and nothing better to do, our boat decided to send an elite 3 man team, armed with peanuts, on a dangerous mission swimming silently in the moonlight to scare the bejeesus out of the other boat. They were pleasantly surprised to see us - mission failed. We finished up on Flores island, smelly and tired but went out for dinner, drinks and goodbyes with the gang. We went our separate ways the next day - our way was the poor mans way, a 2 day b*s and ferry hike back to Bali. Definitely worth it though.
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paulmckeon on

Tara O'Donoghue
Hi Michael,

You have a very shocked cousin. Tara could not believe that you had that really unfortunate Razor Larceny happen to you while in South America...... of that none of the towns in Australia had any razors either.

Guess that she is not a fan of the look - Indonesia looks great - I am intrigued as to what happened on that really dodgy night on Flores.

Ciao and look forward to the next post.

Paul and Fiona

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