Posts Tagged ‘Barru’


‘I am Pelni. There is no boat to Surabaya today.’
Pelni is the national ferry company. The woman pronounced her verdict with authority from the delapodated non-existant Pelni office.
‘There is no boat today,’ repeated a travel agent with a big Pelni logo on the window. ‘Only on the 27th at 2am.’
We showed the information on the official Pelni website, leaving today (26th of May) at 22.00.
‘No.’
We bought a ticket for the 27th at 2am. The man disappeared to print the ticket.
‘The boat leaves tonight at 22.00,’ he informed us. ‘If you go to the port at 2am it would have already left. Make sure you’re there at 10.’
Monty Python must have been Indonesian.

The boat from Makassar to Surabaya

The boat from Makassar to Surabaya

Will was sick this morning – he had another fever. Maybe a repeat of what we both had earlier. Clement and I needed to get to Makassar to catch the boat, and Will’s boat leaves a few days later. We agreed we were already back in civilisation, and Will would be OK, and Clement and I sprinted to Makassar. It was flat, cloudy and not so hot, and we raced to Makassar, reaching there at about 2.

We were welcomed by Dar Na and Mr Dul from the Makassar cycling community, shown around, and given a place to freshen up for the long boat trip to Surabaya.

Our friends in Makassar

Our friends in Makassar

The boat is huge, and only for passengers – no cars. It is a maze of corridors and stairways. I was like a little kid, exploring the depths and hidden places of this boat. I found a stairwell piled full with old televisions and mouldy mattresses. I went to the toilet in the captain’s toilet and hung out in the crew lounge. I visited the laundry, and met the people sleeping on random pieces of floor all over the ship.

In the bowels of the boat

In the bowels of the boat

P.S. When we arrived in Surabaya, we read of Will’s sickness. He had been to the hospital and was tested positive for dengue fever. Ouch. I wish him a speedy recovery. A very nasty disease to have..


The road is a dual carriageway and the cycling is to get the kilometres done. Today I passed 33,333km and we got within 100km of Makassar. The excitement mounted when we discovered a boat going to Surabaya leaving tomorrow evening. My Borneo and Sulawesi detour is coming to an end. It has been amazing.

Shadows

Shadows

Flat road. No music – I had the music of horns and traffic. The cars tried to copy China with their honking (China is much worse, though). The solution – music. Set intermediate goals about 30km apart and then go. Ice stops, food stops, flake out in the midday heat stops, and now we find ourselves on the beach camping out in 2 little gazebos. Sitting in the still water we watched the sun set to a backdrop of amazing clouds. The birds flew in perfect formation ahead. The silence was emcompassing. The beauty was engrossing. And then we had a laugh, making more and more stupid photo ideas for the ‘Bold’ cigarette advertisements. More to follow.

Bold

Bold

Our beach sleeping place

Our beach sleeping place

33,333km

33,333km