How much can you fit into 10 days…?
It’s been a busy old time on Waterhorse lately.
After the consecutive visits from both lots of grandparents, Chae’s brother stopped in for a flying 3 day visit and we then saw our wonderful friends from home, The Farrands Family!
Mo was in Bali already, so took a ferry to meet us at Gili Air.
We spent a lovely 3 days showing him the island, bike riding, bombs off rooftops, diving and the boys watching the cricket.
He and Chae had a good dive off Gili T, and although it wasn’t Raja standard, there were still lots of fish and some coral to check out.
It was great to have him with us and for Chae to have a long overdue catch up with his brother.
He ended up helping us clean and pack up the boat for our flying visit to Bali, to meet with Mark, Anna and their kiddies, who we have also not seen since we left home!
We said goodbye to Mo in Bali, after a loooong drive to Lombok airport (1.5hours) and a very short flight to Denpasar (20 mins!).
Senses were overloaded in Bali, as we were thrown into the hustle of a giant traffic and people filled city! Our eyes were clogged with fumes and our ears hummed with all the chaos that came with the drastic change in pace!
The Farrands had booked a giant villa for our few days there. A chance for rest, relaxation, swimming and a place to retreat when the hubbub all got too much!
Squeals of delight and emotional hugs were the go when the car pulled into the villa, where they were waiting! Emotions on overload for all of us!
We spent 5 busy days in Seminyak. Drinking, eating, walking, scooter riding. Massages, delightful meals, drinking. Shopping, sleeping, having long showers, sleeping in giant puffy beds, swimming, drinking. Oh, did I mention drinking….!
We went to Finns Beach Club birthday party, where we felt overdressed and old, seeing as we were the only ones not in the pool with our g strings on!
It gave for some hilarious people watching and a well needed night out with just the adults. A rare treat for Chae and I!
The 20-minute racing scooter ride home from the beach club for the 4 of us on individual bikes was hilarious!
A day was spent at the Bird and Reptile Park, which was delightful for adults and children alike! Libby’s quest for a pet bird was intensified after the day spent there. She is a persistent little person and desperately wants a pet, so we will see how her powers of persuasion go…
After long lunches in rice paddy locations and dinners at funky little Mexican joints, all too soon, the time of fluffy beds and long showers came to an end.
A short hop in the plane back to Bali. A wee tussle with the airport taxi drivers later (the first unfriendly and aggressive people we have met in 7 months of living in Indonesia!) and a hot walk down the road to the Bluebird taxis we had booked and we were on our way for another loooooong drive to the boat.
With the ton of baggage delivered to the boat, we then headed out for a quickie stop around Lombok with them.
A few days on Gili Air. We had honed in on the best spots by now with the time we had spent there. Bike riding, bombs off the roof in pools, swimming, snorkeling, sunset drinks, Bintangs and vodkas. It was a busy old time!
We then left for a trip to the South Gilis. A more remote and laid-back paradise. Back to what we love.
Snorkeling and swimming, games of cricket on the sand spit of the beach at low tide, a dive for all the adults, a few drinks, a dinner out at the Eco Resort on the island we were anchored off, walks on the powdery sand beaches and just general laid-back enjoyment!
After several days here, it was time to move on again. Their trip was drawing to a close and we needed to get them to Nusa Lembongan to catch a ferry back to Bali from there.
What started as a smooth morning sail turned into a rolling and rough passage across the Lombok strait.
We headed to the South coast of Nusa Penida in the hope of being able to stop and swim with the manta rays that are there.
Well, that was not going to happen. With sea sick guests and a giant swell rolling in (the surfers in the area were happy as it was big, not so for the yacht!), along with the 30 other dive boats in the area, we decided to keep on keeping on to calmer waters.
It was sad to see the amount of dive boats buzzing around the bays where the mantas come to feed. This kind of intensive activity is what drives marine creatures away from the places that they go. I know everyone wants to see them, but there has to be a better way so the animals do not feel harassed. Hundreds of swimmers each day in the waters cannot make for a good time for these mantas.
As we passed the south coast of Nusa Penida we giggled at the throng of insta-tourists on the cliffs at the popular site of Angels Billabong, lined up like little soldiers on the edge of the cliff, waiting for their few minutes of happy snapping and posting, their insta feed satisfied, with little actual interaction with the actual landscape and environment. It’s a mad, mad world I tell you. Insta tours of Bali and Nusa Penida are a thing these days…!
We laughed as we passed, knowing that we will all be in their snaps for the day. I made a good impression of a manta ray for all the people who didn’t get to see one on the dive boats as we turned and headed for sheltered water. Any who saw won’t be forgetting that manta in a while!
After rounding the bottom of Nusa Lembongan the waters calmed and the seasick feelings abated.
A mooring was collected and we sat down for… you guessed it…. a refreshing drink! It had actually been a hard slog to get there and we were all happy it was done. The life of a sailing family, things can get uncomfortable now and again!
2 days were spent here, enjoying the touristy fun the island had to offer. Dinners out, a lazy beach club day, cliff walks, swimming and enjoying the last few moments we all had with our friends.
It had been an epic 2 weeks. We had crammed so much in the short time we were all together that we needed a holiday!
With sad faces and aching livers, we stood at the beach on the last morning, waiting for their ferry to come.
We watched as they boarded, and waved goodbye. As always, the goodbyes are emotional for us all.
As their boat drove off into the choppy swell of the strait, we headed back to our little dinghy to return to Waterhorse. She was strangely quiet and empty after our 2 months of guests.
Time for reflection and remember the amazing fun we have spent with all the family and the friends who have been to see us recently.
Also, time for a liver cleanse!!!!
Photo credits to Anna and Mark this post, theirs were far better than mine!!