At the Ende of the Earth
Trip Start Sep 17, 2007
273Trip End Oct 08, 2008
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Initial signs were promising. The bus was not packed, either with produce or people. We even seemed to move relatively quickly out of town. We only had to stop once so the driver could bang around with a very large wrench. Then we were on our way.
In fact, it wasn't until we were well on our way that things started to go wrong. It wasn't until he turned on the CD player.
Some people have the sound up in their cars
Yet, as we coasted along the highway, we came upon a brilliant view of the mist-shrouded valley and the retreating town of Bajawa, he switched to another CD and Bryan Adam's "Summer of '69" blared throughout the minibus. And I stepped back from myself and looked around, at myself and our situation, and just had to laugh.
We were heading towards the Ende of the earth, in a cramped minibus with a suicidal driver, on one of the most isolated parts of the planet, and Bryan Adams was coming out of the speakers
We did make it to Ende. We made it down to the southern coast of the island, then wound along the cliffs until two volcanoes came into view. Nestled underneath them was the port of Ende, the main Dutch colony on Flores. It looked south, towards Australia.
Our drivers were nice enough to drop us off right at our hotel, which was nice since we had no idea where we were. Our guidebook doesn't give us maps of cities on this island. Probably because no one comes here. The hotel was nice enough. We splurged on the luxury suite. It was $9 and had a cold shower. The shower was worth it.
We planned to head out in the early afternoon to walk around town a little. It started raining. Our hotel owner didn't seem to think the rain existed. Don't worry, it's dry season, he assured us. That didn't change the fact that it had been raining for two days. But it did clear up eventually and we walked down towards the beach.
There were a lot of locals out wandering around. I'm pretty sure every single one of them stopped to greet us
On the way back our hotel owner saw us on the road and gave us a lift in his car. It was brand new and very shiny. That was about the extent of our Ende tour. Only two more hours and we'll be in Moni!