We met up with Kim and Jay, a couple of teacher friends from our last school, for the first half of our stay. They're working at a school in Surabaya. It was nice to spend time with people we know, and know how to interact with. We both miss having good friends to talk to.
During their stay, we took a couple of snorkeling trips: one to the northwestern Gilis (islands) of Trawangan, Air, and Meno (disappointing, lots of dead coral and water crowded with douchey tourists doing their best to kill more coral); another to the more remote east side of Lombok around Gili Lampu (beautiful, healthy coral fields, mangrove islands, no other tourists in site). We also took a day trip to a southern beach (Pantai Selong Belanak) for a great day of playing in the waves.
They had to go back to work about a week ago, giving Rani and I some time alone, which has also been nice. We took a dive trip up to Gili Trawangan, where we saw an amazing number of turtles, some really interesting squids and cuttlefish, a righ-out-in-the-open octoupus (changing the color and texture of his skin depending on surroundings), and 6 FREAKIN' SHARKS!!! That's a first for us. They were small, and mostly hiding in some caves, but one swam out a couple of feet from me, and I freaked out for a second until I realized that I could definitely take him down if it came to it. Rani got really sick after the second dive and had to sit the third out, but she didn't miss anything on the last one except for a black rockfish.
Anyway, the rest of the time has mostly been spend by the pool. We've each read 5 or 6 books, and (mostly Rani) planned what's shaping up to be an epic summer touring the islands of the north Atlantic (Iceland, Azores, UK). We're settling into the idea of going back to Lahore, and to work, with mixed emotions.
I haven't taken many pictures this trip, but I'll leave you with the view from breakfast at the hotel.
Happy Holidays everyone. Peace, love, and best wishes for 2018!
|If you zoom in, that's the Bali volcano letting off some steam.|