Thursday, March 6, 2014

Around the world in 64 minutes

The merciful absence of motorbikes on Gili Trawangan means the roads and tracks that circle and criss-cross this island are less lethal to cyclists, so I could enjoy my annual bike ride in comfort. I only had to make way for horses and push through impassable sand traps every ten metres or so as I zipped around stealing Wi-Fi from the vicinity of various restaurants I'd strategically eaten at in previous days to give me a broad smorgasbord of signals to choose from when my resort's own connection inevitably broke every single day.

When one of these Wi-Fi-leeching jaunts informed me that this whole island can be circumnavigated by cycle in about 90 minutes at a leisurely pace, I was keen to take on the undemanding challenge and was impressed with my (let's say) record breaking time of just over an hour, including breaks for iced tea and taking repetitive photos of dirt meeting water. I guess I'm just mint.

Depressing update: On our last day, on the way to the boat back to Bali, we saw one motorbike, casually ambling along as if it didn't embody the destruction of paradise. Absolute twat.

Gili Trawangan Tour:
North Coast

These distinctions might not be entirely accurate - I rode clockwise around a roughly egg-shaped landmass with the sea to my left, I didn't stubbornly maintain a northerly aspect and cycle sideways and backwards to match. It helped that some sides faced other islands while others didn't, so I at least had some sense of orientation.

We wondered why this miraculously clear water was mysteriously vacant, until we waded out about 50 metres over painful rocks and the sarcastically shallow sea didn't even reach crotch level

All these signs must point towards some kind of subtle message,
but I'm jiggered if I know

Don't know what that is. This blog's really gone downhill, hasn't it?

East Coast

The water over on this side actually gets deep enough to make swimming feasible. Unfortunately, we weren't the only ones to discover this.
Other people. Don't you wish they'd all just die?

This side in general is far too mainstream and accessible, with all its 'facilities' and 'food.' Yes, I'm glad we stayed in the obscure, out-of-the-way, turns-out-we-don't-have-a-restaurant part where no one else wants to go (at least it was quiet)

South Coast

Didn't make it to Lombok, but apparently these islands (that aren't on Lombok) are the best thing on it, so that's alright

Mysteriously abandoned resorts overgrown by foliage? That's more my scene

West Coast

It gets even worse on the sunset side, before dilapidation makes way for upscale resorts.
What's the story here?

Again, no idea why this tree is accessorised

In the end, I only got a silver medal in the horse pat slalom.
Someone needs to confiscate this camera

Today's irrelevant soundtrack: Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle

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