MAGIC FLORES

I GOT OFF THE FERRY AT 4AM – LARANTUKA PORT – WHICH IS ON THE FAR EAST SIDE OF FLORES ISLAND. I DIDN’T FEEL WELL THE WHOLE FERRY RIDE, NOT BECAUSE OF THE WAVES, MORE BECAUSE OF THE BANANA PANCAKE I HAD PRIOR TO THE ‘CRUISE’. THERE WAS A SMELLY ‘VIP’ ROOM ON THE FERRY FOR ABOUT 4USD BUT THE AIRCON DIDN’T BLOW ANY COLD AIR AND THE TELEVISION WAS ON FULL BLAST WITH BAD MOVIES AND STALLING PICTURES. IT WAS A RELIEF TO GET OFF THAT THING. 16 HOURS IT TOOK. MARK, A FELLOW TRAVELMATE WHO IS CYCLING THE WORLD BY PUSHBIKE HAD HIS BICYCLE STORED IN MY TRUCK FOR THE FERRY RIDE. WE GOT OF THE BOAT TOGETHER AND LOOKED FOR A LIGHTED PLACE SOMEWHERE AS MARK NEEDED TO CHECK ON SOME MAILS. I WAS ABSOLUTELY ‘KNACKERED’ FROM THE FERRY RIDE AND WE DROVE AROUND AND AROUND THROUGH THE DARK TINY STREETS OF LARANTUKA – LOOKING FOR LIGHT. WE GOT LOST – I PERFORMED A U-TURN – AND BAM!! THERE WAS A LITTLE CONCRETE STORMWATER-DRAIN DITCH KIND OF THING THAT WASN’T REALLY VISIBLE AND MY LEFT FRONTWHEEL DISAPPEARED IN IT – SIDEWAYS – DEEP – WEDGED. THE LAST THING I NEEDED AT 4AM IS GETTING STUCK. BUT THAT WAS THE CASE NOW. PUTTING THE CAR IN 4 WHEEL MODE DIDN’T HELP. IT WAS SITTING ON THE LEFT FRONT SUSPENSION AND THE IMPACT SMASHED OUT SOME CONCRETE – THE SUSPENSION BOLTS STUCK IN THE CEMENT AND THE WHEEL WEDGED IN THE DRAIN. I GOT MY LITTLE SCREWJACK OUT AND SLOWLY WINDED UP THE CASSIS. SOME LOCALS ON SCOOTERS ARRIVED – THE WHEEL ONLY HALF WEDGED NOW THANKS TO THE JACK. I JUMPED IN THE CAR AND THE GUYS LIFTED THE FRONT – I WAS OUTTA THERE — GOOD MORNING FLORES

I DROPPED OF CYCLIST MARK AND STARTED DRIVING WEST – ZERO VEHICLES ON THE ROAD – NICE FOR A CHANGE

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FIRST LIGHT ON THE EASTERN SOUTHCOAST OF FLORES
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LONELY SUNRISE

I DROVE FOOR A WHILE AND DECIDED TO HAVE A ROADSIDE NAP IN THE SHADE

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DEFINTELY A PEACEFUL MORNING

WHAT I WAS ABSOLUTELY CRAVING AFTER THE SWEATY FERRY RIDE – A SHIT AND SHOWER

I GOT BOTH DONE ON THAT LONELY BEACH

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I FELT ALIVE AGAIN

UP A LITTLE MOUNTAIN TRACK, THROUGH A FEW CLOUDS AND…

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PAST SOME OF THOSE CUTE STINKY FELLAS…

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THERE ARE THE FAMOUS HIDDEN THREE COLOURED LAKES OF THE MIGHTY KALIMUTU VOLCANO

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‘LAKE OF THE OLD PEOPLE’ IN TURQUOISE
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‘LAKE OF YOUNG MEN AND MAIDEN’ IN LIGHTBLUE
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AND TO THE RIGHT – THE ‘BEWITCHED LAKE’ IN RED

HOLD ON – NO IT’S NOT RED – AS YOU CAN SEE – BUT THAT’S PROBABLY WHY IT HOLDS THE NAME ‘BEWITCHED’ AS IT CHANGES IT’S COLOUR REGULARLY

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I DON’T KNOW WHAT WE DEMONSTRATED FOR BUT IT WAS FUN

AS I WENT DOWN THE MOUNTAIN I PICKED UP THE FIRST HITCHHIKER – A JOUNG LOCAL CHICK WANTED TO CATCH A RIDE TO THE BASECAMP

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SHE WALKS DOWN TO THE BASECAP EVERY DAY – 6KM – TOUGH
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AND I WAS ALONE AGAIN
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ROADSIDEPORN EVERYWHERE

ON MY WAY TO THE TRADITIONAL VILLAGE OF BENA – HIDDEN IN THE JUNGLEScreen Shot 2016-01-13 at 6.39.21 pm

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THE TRADITIONAL VILLAGE OF BENA
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OVERLOOKING THE OCEAN IN THE FAR

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THERE WAS DEFINITELY NOT MUCH GOING ON

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EVEN THE BUGS FELL ASLEEP
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LOCAL TRADE – CANDLE NUTS
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THAT’S HOW YOU CRACK ‘EM
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I BEFRIENDED SOME LOCAL INHABITANT AND TOLD HIM I AM GOING TO THE NEARBY HOTSPRINGS TO HAVE BATH AS I SPENT THE NIGHT IN THE CAR

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HE WAS EXCITED TO COME WITH ME AS HE HASN’T WASHED HIMSELF IN A WHILE

AND HOW AS THE SPRINGS ARE DOWN A FEW HILLS FROM HIS VILLAGE

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MALANGA HOTSPRING
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THE WATER IS NEARLY AT BOILING POINT THOUGH
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OLD MATE TOOK HIS WASHING POT AND SAT IN THE WATER SCRUBBING EVERTHING FOR A GOOD 30 MINUTES

AND DROPPED OF MY NEW FRIEND AT HIS VILLAGE AND DECIDED TO TAKE A DIFFERENT TRACK THAT I SAW ON A LOCAL MAP

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IT GOT REMOTE AND I ONLY SAW A BUNCH OF CARS IN 6 HOURS DRIVING – I THOUGHT I AM GETTING LOST – I SORT OF WAS
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THERE WAS A MILLION SCHOOLKIDS THOUGH – I DONT KNOW WHERE THEY ALL CAME FROM AS THERE WAS ONLY A FEW LITTLE PLACES ALONG THE TRACK
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AWESOME KIDS ALWAYS UP FOR A GOOD SELFIE

I FOUND MY WAY BACK TO THE MAINROAD – AFTER RUNNING OUT OF BRAKES FOR A WHILE AS I JUST OVERHEATED THEM AS THE WAS ONLY CORNERS BAD CONDITIONS AND HILLS ONLY

AND CONTINUED MY JOURNEY TOWARDS LABUAN BAJO TO FIND SOME CIVILISATION..

I HEARD THE DIVE IN LABUAN BAJO IS SUPPOSED TO BE ONE OF THE BEST SPOTS IN THE WORLD

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OCTOPUS

THE DIVERSITY WAS INCREDIBLE

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HARD TO CAPTURE IN A PICTRE BUT THERE WAS SO MANY FISH

THERE IS A CLEANING STATION FOR MANTA RAYS WHICH MEANS THOSE STUNNING 5 METER WIDE ANIMALS FLOAD THROUGH THE WATER AND GET THERE SYSTEM CLEANED BUT TINY LITTLE FISH AFTER THEY HAD A FEED – SIMILAR TO A CROCODILE AND A BIRD

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ABSOLUTELY MESMERISING TO HAVE ONE OF THOSE FELLAS GLIDING ABOVE YOU IN SILENCE

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MAJESTIC CREATURES

THE SAME DIVING BOAT TOOK US TO RINCA ISLAND WHERE WE MET SOME DRAGONS

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THE COMODO ASKED ASKED IF WE CAN TAKE A SELFIE

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LAZYNESS – NOTHING UNUSUAL FOR LOCAL INDONESIANS
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..ZzzZZz.
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FEELING LIKE 14 AGAIN – OVERLOOKING THE KOMODO ARCHIPELAGO

FLORES IS SO PURE.. SO PEACEFUL..

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