30.12.2012 - 06.01.2013
Day 342 – Sunday 30th December
Another miserable day here in Bali, spent the whole morning just sitting in bed waiting for the rain to stop. After a while it started to slow down a bit, so Me and Marcus went to the restaurant next door wading through the flooded streets. After lunch we went around a bit to pick up a couple of things from the chemist, and then came back to the dry hotel. Luke and Louis were back from surfing by this point so the 4 of us just spent the afternoon chilling out and then went to skygarden at 5pm to pick up the amazing all you can eat and all you can drink barbeque extravaganza for only 3 quid. Once the clouds started to look a bit fishy we left the roof and went to pick up some tickets in advance for The Hobbit so as not to miss it again. As we’re leaving to Lombok tomorrow to spend new year’s with Ismael I have to hand my bike back in as my month of having it is up in a few days. I was hoping the guy wouldn’t notice all the damage from my crash, but he was a fucking eagle and saw it all instantly and got very pissed off. After over an hour of just standing there refusing to pay and saying I’d take it to the mechanic myself we were getting nowhere. He basically wanted to have my passport as deposit for me taking the bike away and fixing it in the morning, but seeing as I have to leave tomorrow early I really don’t want to deal with this and I hate giving up my passport. So we eventually agreed a price of around 50 quid, considering that and the fact that I didn’t even drive it for 2 weeks when I was injured it was a pretty pointless thing to get. After all that annoyance, it was time for me and Luke to go to the cinema. I have to say that I was never really that big a fan of The Lord of The Rings, but I thought this film was actually pretty good, if not a bit ridiculous. Either way I enjoyed it, but was a little pissed off with the fact that they’d run out of popcorn!
Day 343 – Monday 31st December
For some reason I couldn’t sleep last night at all which won’t bode too well with the fact that it’s New Year’s Eve tonight. I woke Marcus up around 8 and after we had our free breakfast, we packed everything up, settled the bill and hit the road east to Lombok. Managed to get all the way to the port in Padang Bai without getting stopped by police looking for bribes which was a bit of a result, and meant we got there in pretty good time. Still we had a bit of a wait for the ferry, so we just picked up some food and I found a bench to finally get some sleep on. The ferry was completely empty and it arrived 2 hours early, one obvious benefit of travelling on New Year’s. When we made it in to Lombok, the inevitable happened and it started raining! We were forced to stop and have a coffee to let it die down for a bit, where Marcus managed to spill the whole cup on his trousers. All in all we made it to Ismael’s in about 8 hours which isn’t too bad. As always dinner was ready on the table and we sat down to eat as Marcus and him spoke to each other in Indo getting to know one another. After all sitting around for a bit and having showers we headed out for the big night, first we stopped off to pick up one if Ismael’s friends then we drove to the other side of the city to Gomez’s house. Someone who I’ve met just as much as Ismael and is a really nice guy who has such a nice house right in the middle of a load of paddy fields. First his Mum cooked us some eels she’d found in the fields and then we were given a whole other dinner and tea and coffee, not really what I was expecting from New Year’s! But after a while I suggested we go get some fireworks and booze, so me and Gomez drove off into the middle of the city where it was fucking crazy. This is what I was expecting from New Years, giant street parties and such, shame all these guys are pretty tame. Once we got the fireworks we came back and Gomez got a friend to bring round some whiskey for us and some local shit, great gift. Then the 6 or 7 of us guys just spent the night sitting around drinking and laughing and playing the guitar and shit. It was pretty fun and given how tired I was it was probably better than partying hard. At 12 we set off all the fireworks and then sat and finished off the drink before heading home around 2.
Day 344 – Tuesday 1st January 2013!!
After last night’s late antics, we all got up pretty late today. The wife had breakfast all laid out, and after we ate we sat around getting harassed by the kids. They’re pretty nice but a little bit annoying sometimes and one of them has this really dead eyed stare which freaks the shit out of me. As per usual it was raining buckets, but it did ease up and Ismael took us on a drive around the countryside with his friend, Lombok is so god dam beautiful and it’s so cool to drive around and see all the little villages, shame that it has to rain every 5 minutes! We took shelter in a little local coffee place and sat there chatting for a couple of hours as the monsoon pounded around us. Marcus started telling me about this really cool island in Thailand which has barely any tourists and is really cheap, plus it’s no longer rainy season there. It really got me thinking about it and how it would probably be a good idea to get out now, I do love Indo but with the rain it just makes it a bitch to travel, living as I have been recently just staying in one place is OK, but the fact that I want to move around and see lots in the North West over the next couple of months it would start to get really depressing. After a bit more driving around we stopped at Ismael’s friend’s place where he gave us some food and told us a bit about all the fighting fish he’s cultivating in jars all over the house, had no idea fish could fight, but it really doesn’t surprise me that it’s something they bet a lot of money on out here. Once we were done there we visited Ismael’s Mum’s house (1 of his Dad’s 3 wives!) and hung out there chatting with his Mum, Dad and sister. After a while, his brother in law also called Ismael turned up, not sure if I’ve mentioned this guy, but other than being a supposedly ex crack addict he’s fucking hilarious. He offered to take us out drinking with a couple of mates, Ismael refused to go which felt a bit worrying, but the people all turned out to be friendly if not a bit fucked up, plus they gave us a load of free booze which is always good. Hung out there for a couple of hours just shooting the shit before going to see some other friends who seemingly ran a meth lab in the back of their house; they kept asking us over and over if we wanted to buy some. All a bit of a weird night, but still a good laugh!
Day 345 – Wednesday 2nd January
We got up just after 10 today as we will be driving over to the Gili islands and we had a few things to sort out before we go. As Laurie had such good things to say about the place and Marcus having only 10 days left it seemed right to go there for a few days and party away his and potentially my last week in Indo. We had the usual breakfast and once all our clean clothes were dry we packed up our bags, said goodbye to the mute wife and hit the road. First stop was Ismael’s market as he wanted to show it to Marcus and it meant we could see all the guys again to say thanks for the other night. We were kept there for a while as Ismael banged on about coming back to stay with him or go out in a couple of days, some people just don’t let up! Don’t get me wrong he’s really nice just a bit pushy. Once we escaped we hit the road up to Bangsal to catch a ferry over to Gili Trawangan, we took the monkey forest road which is always fun as you can life at all the monkeys, and here Marcus’ great story of when he was staying with a family who had a pet monkey who just sat in a dark room all day sucking himself off and the looking guilty when a human walked in. Made it to Bangsal when the worst storm hit and we were stranded with no boats leaving anytime soon which meant a 2 hour wait just sitting around on the floor waiting for the seemingly endless rain to ease up. By about half 5 they were happy to send some boats out, and after a pretty rocky and soaking boat trip we made it! After getting a bite to eat we went back to the same hotel where me and Laurie stayed a couple of weeks ago as we knew she’d give us a good price. Once we got some dry clothes on we went and hung out in a bar for a bit before hitting the legendary night market for some of the best food I’ve had in Indo, definitely my favourite thing about this island. Due to the weather and the long day, we took it easy tonight and watched the 6th sense rather than go out, first time I’ve seen it and have to say it’s a bit overrated!
Day 346 – Thursday 3rd January
Got up nice and early today to make sure we could get our free breakfast from our nice guest house lady, as the place is empty and she doesn’t want to hang around all day waiting for us to get up. Sorry to go on about it, but the weather was just as bad as usual today so we pretty much spent the whole day hanging around our room watching movies. Really shows just how little there is to do on an island when it isn’t sunny. We did go to the internet café at one point to check on flights for me to go to Thailand, turns out it’s a lot more expensive than I was predicting and actually not a straightforward mission as air asia no longer run the flight which I came here on. I just need a day to think about booking it really but given the weather here I’m sure I’ll be going. Had some dinner at the night market, still not really meeting anyone here, when me and Laurie were here the place would always be packed with fellow young travellers, but at the moment that really isn’t the case, and I’m sure Marcus is beginning to have enough of me. After dinner we went in search of some bars which looked lively and most importantly did good happy hours, but it was all pretty fruitless and in our true lay fashion we ended up giving up and just going back to our room.
Day 347 – Friday 4th January
Got up to an unusually sunny day, good signs for lounging on the beach! After some food and a bit of TV watching to wake up, the sun had gone and the usual grey clouds were back! Still we went to the beach as we’ve got fuck all else to do and being cooped up in our homestay is getting pretty dull. Marcus took his guitar and we went off and spent the afternoon just hanging out there watching the world go by. Once we got bored of just sitting around there we went and got a bite to eat before going to a bar and having a couple of beers while we stole their wifi to book tickets. Going to Thailand on the 12th arriving the next day, and despite the tickets being so expensive I’m bloody happy to have them booked and it will be nice to get a change of scenery after spending the last 4 months in Indo. After a bit more hanging around we went to the night market to get some food and alcohol. And as per usual we were left sitting drinking alone in this seemingly empty ghost town. The last few nights the reggae bar on the beach has being looking really packed with their live music so we decided to spend the night there. Unfortunately tonight the place was completely empty save for a few Russians and this crazy old drunk Australian woman who wouldn’t leave us alone. Turns out there’s a big party down the road at Rudy’s bar, which is a fucking shit hole, plus the music was abysmal and there was a ratio of about 95% dudes. All in all it really wasn’t worth waiting around there and it was already surprisingly late so we just went home, hoping tomorrow will be a bigger success.
Day 348 – Saturday 5th January
Had the usual routine in the morning before we hit the beach for some afternoon relaxing. We went to the bar which has bean bag chairs on the beach, fucking genius idea and hung out there just reading for a while, before it started raining of course. Luckily there was a little shack with a roof in the bar and some comfy cushions so we stuck around there for a couple more hours playing the guitar. After picking up a pizza we went back to the room before it started raining again. God my life sounds so bloody exciting at the moment! Watched a movie went and had some dinner and interestingly enough bumped into this Italian girl who was here last time I came, fun little reunion there. After we had our food, Marcus stayed at the market to use the internet to skype his brother and I went back to have a nap before we went out. Marcus ended up being gone for about 2 hours which meant a bloody good nap for me, but it was all for nothing as he was feeling really ill and just not in the mood to go out, so we just chilled out at our place for the rest of the night.
Day 349 – Sunday 6th January
Another boring day, no need for me to write about all of it. Long story short, it was all the same bar spending some of the afternoon updating the blog. Didn’t go out again tonight as I had a really bad headache that I could barely even stand up! All in all been a pretty slow week on this island, in a weird way sort of looking forward to the hustle and bustle of Kuta Bali in a couple of days.