Down, down, down again
Turns out it is much (MUCH!) easier to get down from a volcano than it is to hike up it. Luke told us we’d take about 8 hours to get down, but with the help of a walking stick (OMG, I really need to get one for my next hike, because I am seriously loving it) we sped down the mountain like crazy people and managed to do it in just five. Insanely quick as we were going though, the porters still managed to outrun us in their flip-flops. Guess they know the mountain much better than we do.
After a few stumbles onto my butt – and uttering Dutch curses that the only other Dutch couple on the mountain were conveniently able to catch – we got to the end of the park. Looking at our grimy and grinning faces, all we wanted to do, was take a nice long hot shower and not walk for a few more days.
Sadly, after getting to our hotelroom (after a bumpy ride) we found out the shower didn’t run hot except for a few minutes. Resigning myself to a cold shower, I simply figured being clean would be worth it. I gritted my teeth, took a nice long cold shower and spend the rest of the day sleeping and reading books and walking as little as possible. Nobody warns you about this, but as long as you keep walking, your muscles don’t ache too much. However, sitting still for a bit and then walking is like asking a very old invalid person to run a marathon – not going to happen. Oh well, it was all worth it.
And really, that is how we spend our final two days. Lazing about.
Well that and taking a death-man’s ride to the airport – apparently if you tell someone on Lombok you are going to miss your flight if they don’t hurry up, they take it upon themselves to speed down a mountain, past children getting out of school and walking on the road and past anything that lives or breathes in the vicinity of the main road in a way that makes you pray to any god to please, please, please make it to the airport in one piece even if you are an atheist like me.
Also, lazing about really isn’t our style. So, aching muscles not withstanding, we explored the area of Kuta on Bali – not worth it, far too many tourists and all the attendant nuisances – and went surfing in waves far to big for us. And to end the holiday in a perfect manner, we met up with some friends who were only just starting their’s.
Going back home, is never any fun. The amazing trip we took, was totally worth it, but I still wish it could’ve lasted longer. Our trip home made me forget that for a few days (waiting at the airport for 2 hours, then flying for 4 hours, then getting from one airport in the city to the next one before having to wait another 6 hours at the second airport only the proceed to fly for an infinite number of hours will do that to you! – thank god for good books like “the light between oceans“) but looking back already makes me nostalgic about this trip. It was a once in a life-time experience that I hope to repeat many times during my time on the beautiful planet.
I cannot believe it has already been 5 months since we got back. And even though we have had plenty to deal with in that time – interesting internships, the holidays and, not to forget, buying a house and moving to a different city – I am already craving a new big adventure. High time to start planning the next one!