Thursday, January 13, 2011

It's All About Adam

I think I am going to send a letter to the Indonesian president, if someone hasn't done so already. I'm going to propose that they change the name 'Kuta Lombok,' to 'Adam Lombok.' The village formerly known as 'Kuta Lombok' is on the south coast of Lombok, and therefore was previously aptly named.. that is until the appearance of THE 'Adam.' Adam, luckily for me (since I'm assuming having an Indonesian village named after you has some perks) is my cousin. He travelled around Indonesia for several weeks in the Spring of 2010, and this is how, many months later, we found ourselves on a bumpy minivan ride from the very northern tip of Lombok, straight across to the absolute south of the island.

When we were visiting Adam in Squamish, British Columbia at the beginning of our westward journey we heard many tales of his Indonesian adventures. He had especially liked Kuta Lombok for it's infamous surf, beautiful white sand beaches and friendly people, in particular a local beauty whom we had strict instructions to search out: Ani. Kuta is popular with surfer-dudes who strap their boards to their rented motorbikes and allow the wind to whip through their flowing hair as they drift from beach to beach in flowered board shorts in search of the perfect wave. We had written down the guesthouse Adam and his buddies had stayed at and he had assured us that the owner, G'Day, of G'Day Inn would remember him. We only doubted him slightly... as I said, surf boards and their athletic owners are not exactly a novelty in these parts.

We had our shuttle bus driver drop us off at G'Day Inn. 'Do you have any rooms left?' We asked the tiny young mother on the steps of the dining room. 'For how many nights?' She asked. 'Three?' I asked. She shook her head. 'No. We have one room left and it is only available for 2 nights.' 'Ok,' we agreed. 'Sounds good.' We dropped our bags onto the bed, happy to be rid of their weight... again. The young woman and her mother were playing with the child in the courtyard when we came back out. 'My cousin Adam stayed here back in June,' I said. 'He was here with a couple other guys. From Canada? He really liked it here and recommended we stay as well.' I smiled trying to convince them that I was, indeed, paying a compliment. It took a moment for the words to translate in the young woman's head from her second (or likely third) language. I could almost see the wheels turning. Her blank stare turned into an (almost) sly grin. She said something to her mother in Sasak and they both turned to Jonathan and I with huge smiles like I had just confided a personal message from the Queen. 'I remember!' she exclaimed. 'Three boys! Motorbikes! They stayed in that room!' She told us proudly, pointing to the room next to ours as it had been previously occupied by Elvis Presley. She turned to her mother again and they both shook their heads and laughed. From that moment on, we were honoured guests. 'So, you want to stay three nights? It's ok! You stay!' she announced to us almost immediately after our 'true identities' (aka: of close relation to Adam) had been revealed. Regardless of reservations, it turned out, that we, relatives of Adam, would be given priority. Of all the people who passed through this inn, they remembered Adam and his friends.... what exactly had they done to be so memorable? I began to wonder.

Step one: Secured accommodation at 'Adam's hotel.' Check. Now we were off to steal, ahem, meet, Adam's friend.

We stopped into a beachfront warung for a bite to eat. The beach in Kuta is spectacular. Wide and white and hemmed in by green mountains on one end and steep cliffs on the other. Local kids splashed around in the ocean, naked. It was Sunday afternoon and the beach was packed with kids in their birthday suits frolicking in the sun. 'Hello! What's your name!' They managed to spurt out as we passed by, before falling back into the waves in a fit of laughter. Apparently we were as entertaining for them as they were for us.

We needed sustenance before we tackled our Ani hunt. We ordered the usual, rice mixed with unknown goodies. Our food arrived with a side of children. Unfortunately they were practicing their English under entirely different circumstances. There were three at our table, all under ten years old, leaning over on their elbows, practically poking their fingers into our food and droning 'you wanna bracelet, buy a bracelet, good price, cheap for you, special lunchtime price...' in one long continuous sentence. Over and over again. More children lurked around the entrance of the open air restaurant, just in case we bought up all the bracelets these three were touting and were on the lookout for more. Who knows, maybe we have a whole bunch of friends at home that would just love if we bought them a wonderfully local Lombok souvenir. Nothing says 'I was thinking about you while on vacation' like a cheap tacky hemp and shell bracelet. Maybe you will ALL be getting a bracelet next Christmas. Don't get your hopes up. This was the first time we had seen children selling things, and it was at first, shocking, and then just really sad. Each kid had a piece of cardboard that folded into three. Slits were cut at the top and bottom of the board so that the bracelets could be stretched from end to end, displaying their quality. 'Did you make the bracelets?' we asked. 'No,' the kid would reply, '20,000Rp.' 'Where did you get them?' we asked. 'Ok, for you, 15,000Rp,' would be the response. Boy they learn how to charm early here.

Bracelet-less and full, we went off in search of Ani. 'Everyone will know her,' Adam had told us. 'Just ask for Ani who has a stall on the beach selling sarongs and Lombok blankets.' Sounded like a breeze. 'She will be the only one not harassing you from the entrance of their shop.' Well that should be easy, considering we had only just begun to stroll past the shops and had already been instructed about ten times to 'Look lady!' at every single stall selling the exact same imported-from-China sarongs and sundresses. We started asking all the nice sarong shop owners where Ani's shop was. This was not well received. It would go something like this:
Stall owner dashing in front of us as we attempted to pass by: 'Hey You! Look over here! Just look! Cheap price! Special after-lunch price! Sarong! Blanket!'
Us: 'Hi...umm, are you Ani? Hmm, oh yes, right, I don't remember Ani having a beard in Adam's picture, so you musn't be her. Ok, well can you possibly direct us to Ani's shop? Yes, Ani. Never heard of her? Humm.. but you, wait, what? You are selling sarongs... and, what else, ohhh Lombok blankets! And I can look, you say? So, no, you aren't hiding Ani under that pile of sarongs, are you? No. Well, thanks for your help...' And this is how it went. Over and over and over.... until we were very close to the last shop. No one had heard of Ani. I silently wondered about Adam and his imagination. Making up such a nice sounding girl. We stood on the road and scowered (from a safe distance) in hopes of seeing someone who looked like their name was 'Ani' or 'Annie or maybe even 'Anee' in the shadows of the final stall. Maybe that was the problem? We had been mispronouncing 'Ani' this whole time! OR, perhaps we took a wrong turn and weren't in Kuta Lombok after all! What a relief that would be.

I almost didn't want to ask the last shop lady. 'Hi, we're looking for Ani?' I cut straight to the point. The lady looked at me. 'Ani?' Hope flickered. Maybe she existed?! This was the first person who hadn't responded to: 'Do you know where Ani's shop is?' with: 'Sarong! Special early afternoon price!' 'Yes, are you Ani?' I ventured. She was getting annoyed already, I could tell. 'No, what does Ani look like?' she asked. Seeing as I had never met Ani, and at this point, wasn't even entirely sure she existed, I found this question a tad challenging. 'Is she really skinny?' The lady asked. I sucked in my breath and tried in vain to remember the one picture I had ever, in my life, seen of Ani. It was about 3 months ago and Adam had shown us the photo on the screen of his cell phone. Was she skinny? There hadn't been many Indonesians who weren't skinny, so it would be a good guess.. I strained my memory. She had been sitting in the photo...a girl.. with black hair and chocolate-y skin... that sure narrowed it down. 'Umm, well she has a sarong shop and a little boy, I think.' This was exasperating. First no one knows who she is and now this lady wants to play twenty questions with me. 'No.' The sarong seller determined. 'The only Ani I know has a daughter, not a son, and she works in the cafe next door.' I was determined to at least meet someone (anyone) named Ani at this point, so I followed close behind apparently the only other person in Kuta (besides Adam) who had ever met anyone in Kuta named Ani. The lady yelled into the cafe and a truly tiny girl came to the short bamboo fence that bordered the cafe patio. She smiled, friendly but confused. Well, I certainly hadn't thought this out. We had been all over town trying to find Ani and I had never thought about what to actually say to her until she stood, looking quizzically at Jonathan and myself. 'Soo.. umm you don't know me..' (Obviously). No, that sounded dumb. 'I was sent here by this guy...' Sigh. Creepy. 'So, are you THE Ani?'

Thankfully Jonathan was on the ball. 'Our cousin Adam told us to come to Kuta and meet you!' he explained, simply. There were gasps from behind us. Jonathan had just said the magic word, and we didn't even know it. Ani barely got a word of greeting out before people literally came flying out of the woodwork to shake our hands excitedly and let us know that they knew Adam and then go on to share some personal 'Adam-experience,' much like you would brag about meeting a famous rock star. WHAT had my cousin done here? And, more importantly, what sort of juicy stories could I get out of his admirers to bring back home? After being introduced to everyone in the Official Adam Fanclub we sat down in the cafe for a drink and to chat with Ani.

Turns out Ani had just recently begun to work at the cafe to make a little extra money. She still had the shop, only two doors down, but it is mostly run by her mother. Her mother only speaks Sasak, the traditional language of Lombok, and therefore is not one of the pushy stall owning sarong sellers. Whenever a tourist wants to buy something, Indir, Ani's mom sends someone over to the cafe to fetch Ani who runs back to the shop to help out. Well, at least it all makes sense now! Indir got wind of the presence of 'friends-of-Adam' and rushed over to the bamboo fence to wave and smile a wide, toothless smile at us. 'She wants you to come over for coffee...if you have time,' Ani translated. Aww! She's so cute! Ani chatted with us in between taking orders and delivering the food. The cafe, whose name translates to 'Cheap, Cheap Food' (haha) has a beautiful 'panorama' (as Ani calls it) view over the beach and distant picture-esque cliffs along with good, cheap food. A combination of these factors means that the little open-air cafe is constantly packed. Indir peeked around the corner every few minutes to make sure we didn't forget about her coffee invite and give us another one of her adorable toothless smiles. Indir is toothless, we learned, because she chews betlenut. Betlenut, as far as I understand, is similar to tobacco, but seems to involve a lot more chewing and spitting, and is a notorious carcinogen.

It ended up that we would spend a lot of time at this little cafe with it's 'panorama' views over the next couple days, enjoying delicious food and chatting with Ani in between her running about at the whim of the constant flow of diners. There was one particular young girl, maybe ten years old, whose elbow marks were practically worn into the chest-level bamboo fence directly in front of our favourite table. It was, perhaps the saddest thing I have ever seen. She stood there, hanging onto the fence, trying to catch a tourist's eye. I told her a million times, politely, that I didn't want one of her bracelets. This was the biggest waste of my breath. Once she thought she had your attention, she would drone, in the most ridiculous of monotones...Miss, Miss, Lady... buy a bracelet... come on...20,000...(no response from me) ok, 15,000 (still no response) ok 10,000 (not even a glance) ok, 5,000. She had successfully bar
tered herself down to a quarter of her original asking price with absolutely no effort
from her potential buyer. Clearly she hadn't majored in business. When I couldn't handle her monotone droning any longer, I tried to engage her in some sort of conversation, just to make sure that she actually still had a pulse. 'Did you make the bracelets?' I asked. 'No, come ooooonnnn. 5,000.' 'Where did you get them?' Jonathan asked. She shrugged. 'Do you always stand in that exact same spot?' Another shrug. 'Why aren't you playing with your friends?' 'Ok, 5,000,' was the reply. 'Is that a special afternoon price?' We tried to joke. Nothing. 'There are lots of kids swimming on the beach, why don't you go for a swim?' She moved over in front of the next table without another word to start the process of bargaining with herself again. 'If we come back twenty years from now she will probably be standing in the exact same spot, selling the exact same bracelets,' I thought. It certainly poses a challenge to recognize that it is both of us, not just this young girl, who is in this interaction that comes framed and limited by our own individual tangled webs of motivations, thoughts, intentions, sore memories, upbringings, cultures and so on. Perhaps the greater challenge, though, is to honestly hope (or believe) that when we actually do relate so pathetically and brokenly with each other a vigorous and reconciled link between each person still is possible.

Apparently Ani can come and go from the cafe whenever suits her. 'I have a very nice boss,' she said. 'Lets go have coffee with my mom,' and she trotted out of the cafe without a word to anyone. We aren't generally coffee drinkers, but it sounded like a good idea. Indir flitted around with excitement when we came into the shop. 'I'm sorry I don't have any biscuits to go with the coffee' she said through Ani. She took a large woven mat from the back and spread it out on the floor, motioning for us to sit down while she made the coffee. It was like we were old friends that had stopped by for a visit.

Ani is one of the most amazing people we had ever met. Ani is Muslim, as most of Lombok's inhabitants are. When she was twenty years old she married a man that she had known for about one year. They had a daughter named Rini quite soon after they were wed. Ani's husband then decided that he would like to take a second wife. Ani wasn't keen on the idea, so when he went ahead and made plans to marry his girlfriend, Ani asked for a divorce. Ani told us that she considers herself lucky because her husband agreed to divorce her. Often, in these situations, the husband refuses to allow his wife to divorce him and it makes life incredibly difficult for the woman. Ani left with Rini. She receives no support from her ex-husband and he never comes to see Rini. The government helped Ani open a little sarong shop on the beach. Her mother does all the weaving back in their traditional village six kilometers from town. Each scarf and Lombok sarong takes 2 weeks to weave. Longer if you don't spend most of the day working on it. Their shop is also supplied with colourful cotton sundresses and cheap sarongs from a third party.

The shop itself is tiny. All the shops that line the (practically) dirt main road are the exact same. They have three shabby walls and a slanted roof, all constructed from bamboo. The front of the shop is open to the street. All three of the walls are lined with sarongs and blankets, all perfectly folded, and draped over bamboo poles creating a wallpaper effect. The shop is probably about 2.5 meters by 3.5 meters (8'x12', for those who have held out on adopting the metric system). In the back corner is a door short enough that I had to duck to pass through, that leads to the living quarters. The space is just wide enough to have bamboo stalks stretched across the length a half meter off the floor, forming the bed. Under the bed is storage of pretty much everything Ani owns. From lying in the bed, you could reach out into the 'kitchen' which is really just a collection of pots and pans piled onto the floor and a spot to set fire to some kindling for cooking. At night, Ani just pulls a board across the front of the shop. 'Then we're closed,' she explained, showing us how the 'door' worked. Ani and Rini live in the hut and most nights Indir stays with them, as opposed to taking the bumpy bus ride back to her place in the village. What amazes me about Ani the most is how absolutely, unfailingly, happy she is. She smiles constantly. Even the patrons in the restaurant comment on Ani's beautiful, consistent smile. Ani knows she will probably never leave Lombok. She works every day at the cafe, from the moment it opens until every tourist is plump full without a single day off and helps run the sarong shop at the same time. She is open and honest about her life, experiences, culture and happiness. Ani is just happy to 'be' all the time. Her happiness is contagious. I guess I find her so inspirational because I am not-so-happy all the time, but have all the same reasons to be happy that Ani has. I get annoyed when I get too hot, when the bus is late, when mosquitos bite my ankles, when my toast isn't hot... you get the idea. Ani is happy because she is healthy and alive. We could probably all use a little dose of Ani.

Probably because of her contagious spirit, Ani's shop was the most popular on the street with the local women. As we sat out on the mat, sipping Indir's sweet coffee, the shop's patio slowly became crowded with every person in the town, or so it seemed. I guess we aren't the only ones who find Ani and Indir charming.

Before Ani started working at the cafe a few months ago, she ran her shop, and in between customers, she did all her friends' sewing. The treddle sat in the corner of the shop, gathering dust. 'Can I see something you've made?' We asked Ani one night. She went to the back of the shop and returned with a small tye dyed tank top made out of soft cotton. 'Ohhh it's tiny,' I commented. Indir said something and the crowd laughed. 'That's because it's for a skinny midget' Indir joked (Ani translated). Apparently 'Skinny Midget' is a nickname of Ani's. She was tiny... it was true. Although, most of Ani's friends were small... and they were all beautiful. I wasn't that surprised to learn that nine of Ani's girlfriends had been swept off their feet by men from Australia, France and New Zealand and had moved away with them. The girls looked exactly like many women in the West wish they looked. Tiny feminine figures, flawless tanned skin and long shiny hair. 'But we all want to be fat and white!' Ani told us. Umm what? I offered Ani fifteen or so of my pounds, completely free of charge. Ani told us that many of her friends buy special skin whitener and bleach their faces to be lighter. 'They all have lines right here,' she said, drawing a line along her chin. Their face is lighter than their neck. Ani herself loves swimming (and lucky her, lives about two steps from a breathtaking beach) but hardly ever goes down to the water because she doesn't want the sun to make her skin darker. These concepts are completely foreign to me, coming from a land where weight-loss gimics and diet fads make billions of dollars every year, probably only slightly more profitable than tanning beds and self tanning creams. I would love to be as petite as Ani with perfect chocolatey skin. It's funny, in a non-funny way, how everyone wants what they can't have.

Speaking about 'wanting,' I was in the market for some cooling sundresses. I had been waiting until we got to Ani's shop (and it had been painful in the blazing heat) to get some new tropics-friendly clothing. I tried on pretty much every sundress at the shop and performed a little fashion show for all the women who were passing the hours with us on the shop's porch, so they could vote on their favourite dress. Good thing too, because Jonathan was doing the useless 'Whatever you want, honey. They all look nice' boy thing ('a happy wife is a happy life'). Sensing tension, as I huffed and puffed at Jonathan's less-than-interested response, Ani ran to the next shop to borrow a mirror. 'They won't mind. We share everything here,' Ani told us, referring to her neighbours in the close-knit shops on her street. 'No one ever goes hungry, because if I have something, I share with them, and they share with me. If someone has chili's, everyone has chilis. We are like family.' I looked around at all the smiling faces and nodding heads. I would be happy if I got to hang out with Ani all the time too.

Like me, Jonathan had been (more) patiently waiting until we arrived in Kuta Lombok to buy a hat from Ani. He wanted a rice hat. I was significantly less excited about the prospect than he was. Unfortunately Ani didn't sell rice hats (hurray), but, her neighbour did (darn). And this is how Jimmy entered our lives. Jimmy is the rice hat's name. 'Jimmy the Rice Hat,' is the name on the adoption papers, if you want to get specific. That's right, folks, this hat is so large, it has it's own personality and name. Jimmy practically needs his own seat on the bus. He was handmade by the father of the shop owner from bamboo. After Jonathan had forked over the small amount of cash to buy Jimmy, the woman sat with us on Ani's porch and weaved a chin strap for him. Jonathan loves Jimmy. As do all the locals we pass on the street who smile, giggle and yell 'Hey, Farmer!' as we walk by. Maybe they're onto something! Maybe we could arrange a day in the fields for dear old Farmer Jon and he could see how Jimmy would live up to the challenge... He also picked out one of Indir's hand woven Lombok sarongs. It really is a piece of art. You should wear it 'Lombok style' Ani encouraged him, showing him how to properly tie it around his waist. No doubt, ever since we had visited a sarong-clad Adam in Squamish, Jonathan had been dreaming of this moment. His smile reached his ears as he happily paraded around in his new hat and skirt. My smile resembled something of a grimace.

As Adam was the common link between ourselves and our new friends, the conversation often turned to tales of his visit. And they were plentiful. And plenty entertaining. 'Cheeky Adam!' Ani called him. 'When are you going to stop being cheeky?' Ani asked him one day. 'When I'm 45' was his reply. Ani laughed and laughed when she told us about all his 'cheeky escapades.' Indir was perhaps even more smitten with Adam than her daughter. She was keen to find out when exactly Adam planned on returning. 'How many months?' she would ask us every day. 'We went to the market and bought peanuts when Adam was here. She roasted the fresh peanuts for Adam, who ate them all, and she wants to know if she should get ready to make some more for him,' Ani explained. Ani told us that when Adam was visiting they took him to their village and Indir showed him how to weave a sarong 'Lombok style.' I laughed picturing Adam, and his friends, (one who was widely known as 'Gamook', which is the Indonesian word for 'fat') sitting by a loom attempting to weave. When we were leaving the final night, Indir chose one of her gorgeous blue scarves and insisted I take it as a gift. I had been admiring the scarves from a distance the whole night. They were meant for special occasions, and they certainly looked that way. The detailed design on the one Indir picked out for me weaves blues, pinks, greens and golds together in a stunning pattern. The gold strings practically glittered in the soft light of the shop. I was so excited, and so honoured to have been given such an exquisite, handmade scarf. Indir is very very talented. 'Make sure you tell Adam that I gave you a scarf!' Indir instructed me with one of her huge toothless smiles.

We left the party that had accumulated on Ani's porch and headed back to G'Day Inn. It was late, but Jonathan had a pizza craving, so we sat on the patio and ordered one from the guest house. 'Your cousin ordered the pizza all the time too!' G'Day's wife told us excitedly. 'Every day, more and more spicy!' she said, shaking her head. 'Well then! We'll have one Spicy Adam pizza, please,' we requested. What kind of legacy did my dear cousin leave that more than six months later this woman remembered what food he ordered and that 'he liked it spicy?'

The next morning a shuttle picked us up at G'Day for the long bus and ferry combo back to Ubud, Bali for our final days in Indonesia. The shuttle was early, which is funny, because nothing else is on time, and we were caught unprepared. Although, these shuttles are pretty sneaky and likely show up early so that they can usher you to their allocated 'travel agent cum cafe cum souvenir stand' where, if you hang out long enough, surely a meal time will pass. The shuttle staff are usually so friendly and the other travellers so chill-axed and chatty, that really the whole ordeal is more entertaining than annoying.

It was 8am. The driver pulled two dusty CD's from the dash board and shined them on his shirt. My heart started to pound with anticipation. The music on these CDs was going to be one of two genres. This we have learned through experience. As soon as the CD's were jammed into the CD player either super sappy 1990 ballads were going to pour out and fill the stuffy shuttle or, it was going to be techo-dance music. Western or Indonesian, it didn't seem to matter which language the dance music was in, so long as it was backed with a bass drum and synthesizers. It was not uncommon to be at a restaurant or bar with super-sap tunes playing as the background music and the staff joyfully singing along at the top of their lungs, like the forgot that they weren't still in the shower. Just the other day, our burly male bartender treated us to his rendition of 'I'm Every Woman!' These may be the only two types of music that are allowed across the Indonesian border. Either that, or, the Balinese just really like to 'Move it, Move it.' Jonathan and I stared at each other, wide eyed, waiting for 'Mitta DJ' to choose our momentary musical fate. 'Check this out!' blared the speakers, making me jump. The only thing I wanted to 'check out' was my imminent headache. I smiled, despite myself and bobbed my head mockingly to the beats. Our DJ/driver laughed and took my 'dancing' as a sign that I wanted him to crank the volume even louder. 'I'll give you something to dance to!' he exclaimed happily. I watched as the air freshener, which looked like a tiny bag of rice, swayed, jumped and danced around erratically on the end of the string that attached it to the rear-view mirror. Oh jeez. What have I done? The music stopped suddenly and I breathed a sigh of relief. Then a voice confidently boomed through the speakers:'On the First Day, God created the Earth- and he saw that it was good!' Interesting... Religious Dance Music? This was an interesting way to learn about the Creation story... 'On the Second Day, God created Man,' the voice continued, 'And he saw that it was good.' Jonathan looked around confused. Were other people hearing this as well? 'On the Third Day, God created Music- and he saw that this was good.' The story started to take a surprising turn... 'And on the Fourth Day, God created the Club- And all the Good people- Got Down.' I burst out laughing. Boom Boom Boom, went the bass. Pound Pound Pound went my headache. I looked at our watch-it was 8:13am. How long was this bus ride again? The booming other-worldly voice wasn't through with it's suggestions yet though. 'This should be played at a high volume!' It instructed. OH. MY. I watched the driver's hand on the wheel. Was he going to obey this demanding 'voice'? He didn't make a move for the volume. Small victories. 'SOS' the voice bellowed. At least we were on the same page now...

It might be in vain, but we could try to recreate the electronic orchestra in your head. Dance music is quick, so start by saying boom, boom, boom, boom in your deepest voice possible at about 170 beats per minute. Now picture a synthesized trumpet entering in over top of the booming bass drum. The notes of this digital trumpet are wiggling through what sounds like the only melody ever used in dance music (at least to our untrained ears). Then on top of this you can still add any collection of phrases that are possibly intended to help you dance your way through the song. Of course, as mentioned above, it was deemed important to 'listen to the siren', but Mitta DJ also made sure to remind you to "Drop it", to "Check this out", and that "'ere's sometin' ta dance to". Don't think for a moment, though, that these pointers were given only in a normal human voice. What dance song would be complete without a robot voice and a high, squeally chipmunk voice? We also enjoyed the music occasionally slowing to a complete stop only to be eased back to life with the 'broken record effect' given courtesy of Mitta DJ. It has been a real struggle (and a challenge that likely even has flopped) to paint a delightfully accurate musical performance of our ride. If somehow you can imagine all these parts layered together, though, you just might be able to find stardom in Indonesia! And yes, the bus ride was that long...

We boarded the ferry back to Bali, a little sad to be leaving Lombok. We had only been there a short time, but each day had been packed with so many great experiences, from the Gili Island paradise to the friendliness of our Kuta friends and all the beautiful scenery in between. We bought a 'pineapple-sicle' to eat on the ferry while we reminisced. I wonder if Adam had one of these pineapple-sicles.....


Erica said...

Remember those million page notes we used to write back and forth to each other in high school? Well your stories and your writing is STILL just as entertaining now as it was then. Seriously I can picture everything, especially your facial expressions hahaha in other words amazing. love you and miss you. your experience sounds amazing and inspiring. this Ani's happiness was even contagious through your writing, found myself smiling the whole time reading it

karly said...

all i have to say is what color scarf did u get me! lol love the hat jon its defiantly you! looks awesome! i miss you both soo much! this was an great entry. these blogs bring me excitement to my boring life here! makes me feel like im there! lol luv you guys