Thursday, November 4, 2010
Escape from Senggigi!
We had two days in Padang Bai, then boarded the fast ferry that took us to Lombock. After much searching, we found a small hotel in Senggigi near the ocean, that seemed peaceful and quiet. We took a stroll around town, had lunch at a streetside restaurant and watched the colorful tourist parade. When we returned to our hotel, we discovered the "live music2Nite" sign in front of the bar across the street. The next morning, after sleepless hours of listening to rock band karaoke and the hacking cough of the neighbour next door, we decided to pack it up. We hastily made our way to, what we thought was the ferry terminal, only to discover we had been driven into a tourist trap. We were ushered in to this grimey little office and told that for 600,000 rp. each ($60), we could have an open ticket to the islands of Lombock on the fast ferry boat. When we said we'd like to go someplace to sit and discuss it, we were told there was no place to go. Then we asked where the boat terminal was, they said this is the boat terminal. So we walked down the dirt road a piece and around the corner, we found it. Unfortunately, by then the next boat headed to the island we wanted to get to, had left and the next wasn't leaving until 5 hours later. We found a nice man that was going to the island with his family and supplies who offered to take us for 100,000rp., but the men we encountered earlier had followed us. They had strong armed our "nice man" and made him cut them into the deal. They harrassed us for an hour and then got angry and tried to intimidate us; actually force us onto a different boat. Finally, the only way to escape them was to get on the next boat to anywhere. That brought us to Gili Trawangan. It wasn't the island we had planned to visit, but it turns out it's even better than our original destination. Maybe there really is something to this Karma stuff after all.