When we arrived on the 14th, we were able to pick up a mooring ball just off the beach and then run a stern line to a post on shore. The area was a bit crowded because of the rally so we were pleased to get such a good spot.
On September 15 we attended a cooking class presented by two local women with an interpreter provided to translate for us. It was quite interesting, and we got to eat the food that was cooked when it was over. In the afternoon, I had a one-hour massage that cost me 75,000 rupia or $7.50--it was wonderful! That evening we joined three other couples and walked down the beach to the Oberoi Lombok, which is an absolutely stunning resort. We enjoyed cocktails at the bar overlooking the ocean, and then we joined Walter and Tiggs from sv Marne for dinner. I ordered seared yellow fin tuna, and Steve ordered rack of lamb. Both meals were exceptional.
The next day we hired a driver to take us to Mantaram to do some grocery shopping at a mall. We enjoyed eating lunch at McDonalds. We then stopped at a wood carving shop and saw some beautiful pieces of furniture. We also stopped at what is called the "Monkey Forest: where you can feed peanuts to the monkeys. There were quite a few when we stopped, including two mothers with small babies clinging to them. It was very entertaining to watch them climb the trees and sit while they ate the goodies. All the roads were very crowded with car, motorcycles, and horse-drawn carts.
That afternoon a "Welcome Ceremony" was held at which the usual speeches were made, and a group of men dressed in costumes and carrying large drums performed a dance. We were fed some very nice treats and were served soda and even Bintang beer. There was a two-hour break during which we walked around the many booths that had been set up by local vendors. Then dinner was served and additional performances by a band and several singing groups were presented to our group. It was a lovely evening.
On September 17, I had another massage while Steve joined Glen and his son Jaryd for a motorcycle trip. They drove up to see three waterfalls. The last one in the series was especially beautiful, and they were able to climb a ladder in the waterfall, enter a cave behind the waterfall, and find the second waterfall plunging from 40 meters above through a hole in the roof of the cave.
We left Medana Marina around noon and motored to Gili Air, which is an island about a mile away. We had to wind our way through a few reefs and made our way to the anchorage. Unfortunately, there were so many boats there that we decided to continue another mile to Gili Trawangan. We were able to pick up a mooring ball there because only two other boats were around us.
Gili Trawangan is the largest of these Gili islands, and it is a very popular place. We went to shore to enjoy lunch, but just as our food arrived, so did a huge thunderstorm. The winds picked up, and the rain came down in sheets. It was raining so hard that we could not see the boat anchored just 50 yards away. We quickly finished our lunch and walked back to the dinghy in the rain. We found the dinghy half filled with rain water, so we quickly drained it and then braved the waves to return to the boat. Everything was all right except for a small amount of water below that had come in through the port lights.
We spent three days at this anchorage and enjoyed it very much. The restaurants were excellent, and the beaches were beautiful so we can understand why it is such a popular place. Our next stop is Bali.