More Flores (kelimutu)

Trip Start Aug 01, 2007
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Trip End Aug 01, 2008


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Flag of Indonesia  , East Nusa Tenggara,
Thursday, November 15, 2007

Well after a nights sleep we all got up before dawn for the trip upto the summit of Kelimutu the Volcano on Flores with the lakes that change shades beacuse of the minrals in the lakes water. It was still quite cold when we got up and had a tasty brekfast of eggs fresh bread and tea all prepaired for us by Mama. This was thrown in with the room rate of  30.000 rps and was very nice. We had ordered the Chicken for dinner this eve and were looking forward to a great sunrise up the top of the volcano.

Problem was our ride let us down only 2 bikes turned up for the journey and by the time the 3rd arrived the sun was already up so we had to rearange for the following day which was a bit of a pest because time was short. I was kinda glad in a way as i am sure a couple of the bikers had been on the palm wine the night before and did not fancy meeting my maker over the side of a volcano althought that would be a good way to go i suppose. I went back to bed for a few hours in fact we all did and the sleep was certainly welcome as the bones were still aching a touch from the long bus ride and ferry the day before.

The rest of the day was spent strooling around Moni and the waterfalls in the area before another really nice eve meal with a equally nice amount of Bintang. We spoke witha few other tourists who had rolled uptoday and had a bit of a singsong while the locals passed around a bit of palm wine. No matter how often i have drunk this stuff i never have aquired the taste for it (but i keep trying ) Moni is a nice enough village for a few days and the surrounding landscape is certainly beautiful. Hopefully tommorow me,Mike and Stefan will make it up the volcano and we can then continue onto Labuanbajo and get out to see the dragons.

Next morning after another nice plate of great bread and eggs we headed up kelimutu in the dark in order to arrive before the sun came up, This ride has to be done to be believed and i am very thankful that it was doen in the dark because i have no doubt that if i had been able to see i would have shit my pants (more than once) hair raising is not the word. You have to try this to belive it my parents would have had kittens had they seen me flying round them corners. Driving up a volacono in the dark on a moped is simply one of lifes great adventures and i hope to do it again sometime, you should try it too

Arrival at the summit was had after 30 mins or so (thank God) and we all made the little hike upto the top in time for the sun to rise over the main lake which was a turquoise blue. i would say maybe 10 or 12 people where up the top with us so we were not etirely alone up there. the sunrise was really beautiful but not perfect as we had a bit of cloud but really worth the death ride up here. we hung around a little and checked out all the lakes. The other 2 lakes were more a blackish brown shade but have been known to go white in the past and the lakes are changing all year. Kelimutu is a very special place to the people in the local area and lots of Myths abound about ghosts and animal spirits that go back all the way to the old religons of flores.

On the way down Stefan said he wanted to take a more Direct Route down !! he went right over the edge and straight down through the jungle. me and mike opted for the 13km hike down and were doing pretty well before we heard a bus trundle along. I thought sod this and stuck out me thumb and the bus went past us leaving me stood there cursing shaking a raised fist in the air.

Then mercy upon mercy they slammed on the breaks and threw open the doors, what a boon  me and mike legged it over before they changed there minds. On we went to the nice V.I.P aircon bus the best we had seen in Indonesia. we were sat down and had a look around the bus was full of women clapping hands singing hyms we had thumbed a lift with the jakarta branch of the catholic church on there annual jolly(what a strange day) me and mike sat there being fed bannanas and given ice cold water to drink followed by sweets and chocs all that was missing was a wiping of my sweaty brow praise the lord. Not a thought was had for poor Stefan in the Jungle without a map the soft sod you make your own luck in this world i say.

Well after being dropped off outside our hotel the goodbye and blessings over we trotted off for our own blessed Bintang. What a day we had a right old laugh and i bemoaned again the lack of time we have to spend. Stefan eventually turned up shagged out and covered in thorns and muck ready for a feed and cold one himself. The food again plentiful and well cooked along with great Value.

We had arranged a lift along the coast tommorow through ende and maybe onto Ruteng although it was not untill 10 am or so which meant we could linger over a few bedtime drinks before hitting the Hay. Overall Our stay in Moni was quite enjoyable and the trip up to the top of Kelimutu a must. Mamas place needs a little paint and fixing up a touch but at the prices she charged she could not be a huge amount in profit and the food was very nice home cooked grub. Only issue here was the hard sell from the son just tell him to get lost if he bothers you to much and he will get the message eventually. Next stop Ruteng 
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