As our friends boat pulled up to the dock, I grabbed the sign with her name on it from our private driver and ran up to where all the cab drivers were waiting to harass people and try to convince them that they are the best taxi driver. I stood there with the sign and started yelling out, “TAXI TAXI!” and “Transport” which was taken in good nature by the locals and other Cab drivers.
It was time to go to our new home for the next 4 nights, Villa Atta.
This place is amazing! First thing Kristi and I did was jump in our rainfall shower and enjoy a hot freshwater cleansing. Equipped with a full size kitchen that puts my kitchen at home to shame, big screen TV, three bedrooms all with their own bathrooms and a nice sized swimming pool. Oh… and a washer! We didn’t have to hand wash our clothes! Lastly, we had a private driver.
I could get used to this luxurious living. Too bad we can’t afford it right now.
Why are we staying in such an amazing place right now? Well, we ran into an old friend of Kristi’s who is here with his sister, brother-in-law and their 13 year old son. We all got along, so they invited us to stay with them and told us to chip in what we could afford. We gratefully and humbly took up this offer and I’m glad we did.
Marie-Claude is a spectacular cook and we eat like royalty. Big G is a pretty solid chef too so they alternated on the cooking.
We did not see a lot of Lombok, but when you have a place as nice as ours, it was hard to leave.
Senggigi is in the middle of the west coastline of Lombok. A quiet town that is all hills and beach. I recall doing a tour of Hawaii with my family 7 years ago I felt like Lombok had a similar feeling as you drive up and down hills along the coast watching waves crash into the beaches. Views that would cost you millions of dollars in North America.
Unfortunately, we wanted to buy fresh meat and vegetables, our driver said we had to go to Mataram…. a 30 minute drive from where we were staying. If I were to buy property here, that would have to be figured in. 30 mins is a long way to go grocery shopping (though a beautiful drive) and you would really want to plan your trips well.
Our 2nd day, we drove 3 hours to the north part of Lombok where we went on a hike to see a couple waterfalls. The guide handed us a price sheet that said our group size was going to be 120 000 IR. $12 to get in? Worth it!
But wait… that was per person…. that seems a bit excessive to see a waterfall. They try to sell it by offering drinking water, fruit and biscuits…. they better be unlimited because I’m going to eat $75 in biscuits to make it worth my while. They also said there are no signs to show you the way so you need a guide.
After going back and forth for about 30 minutes… we agreed on $5 each and we would buy our own water (which cost us 60 cents)
The hike was beautiful. Most of it was stairs and led directly to one waterfall. Though our guide took us down another path and 30 minutes later of more stairs and even getting knee deep into a creek, we arrived at a 2nd waterfall where our french extension all went swimming. I’m battling a cold and my wimpy ass wasn’t about to get into that cold water.
Kristi was her normal self, looking at all the trees, plants and admiring the wildlife around her. One thing I loved about being in Nicaragua was that she was very knowledgeable about what the trees and plants were. We haven’t had much opportunity to learn that kind of stuff here. But she is still observing everything anyways. She picked out monkeys in the trees on 5 different occasions on this hike.
The hike itself was about 2 hours long. Not too physically demanding but enough for me to get a burn in my calves. It was also enough to keep us warm since we were quite high up in the mountains, the temperature was considerably cooler here.
At one point of the hike, the guide looked at me and said, “You are very big.” I laughed and said “but you are very strong. You don’t even wear shoes and you are faster than me.” He laughed and said, “well I do this everyday” so I responded, “well I grow everyday. Soon I will be same size as him.” as I point to Big G who is like 6’4″ish and probably 240lbs. The guides eyes bulged… I think he now believes that white people keep growing… I’ve been the same height since I was 15.
We spent the rest of our days being lazy around the pool.
G bought a few movies for $1 each so him and I watched Zulu (With terrible English subtitles… most of the movie is English but they still have subtitles the entire movie) one night while Kristi and Marie-Claude went out to a club to dance. Apparently they spent half the night playing a game where Marie-Claude dances and Kristi had to guess who she was imitating on the dance floor haha.
It was a tough 4 nights but we are now off to Ubud where we have a list of things we want to see and do in Bali before we leave. We took the boat since we purchased a return ticket when we booked to go to the Gili Islands. The French Connection is flying into Denpasar since they found flights for $24 each. They will then drive 90 minutes up to Ubud where we will spend a couple more days together (in separate accommodation this time). Good times ahead.