I got dinner at the guest house for $6 which consisted of 5 whole fish, rice and vegetables. The fish was cooked nicely and had many added flavours, some quite hot. I washed this down with a couple of Tiger beers. What else would a Tiger rider drink?
After that I retired for the evening.
I got up after the sun had risen and looked across the beach to the sea. The tied was going out and there was a hive of activity going on. There were kids with baskets by the rock pools, men fishing in the shallows, cockerels cock a doodle doing, dogs lazing around, pigs routing about and goats nibbling.
As I watched all this, I contemplated how out of balance our western lives have become.
All of these children had mums and dads; the kids all helped out and were having fun with each other. The animals were free to roam, none of the houses have locked doors and there is a real sense of an interactive community.
The only downside, most of the kids are Barcelona football Fans!!!
I had to fill up the bike with petrol so the nearest place was Lospalos. The roads had got worse as we headed east, from bumpy, to small pot holes, to craters. The road from Com to Lospalos was atrocious. It was steep, covered with craters, rocks and stone. I reached the brow of one of the hills and while still moving forward looked down to see no road just deep ruts, big rocks, big holes and loose pebbles. I thought #@** this would be bad enough on a dirt bike let alone a fully laden Tiger. There was no option to stop, keep it in first, lean back and go. This went on for quite a while and was a good workout. The perspiration was starting to flow. It was nice to finally get to a sealed road. I was thankful it was dry; it would be impassable in the wet.
Once the bikes were filled with petrol, we headed off to Tutuala and ended up at small village on a coastal hill. Again, the roads were bad. We had to ride across a road which had collapsed down the side of a hill. The road was actually now only a third of a road with a 20-metre drop.
It was mid-afternoon and we were getting hungry. We asked a guy on the street where we could get food. He said my house. The house was immaculately kept. He made us noodles with scrambled egg and coffee for $3 each.
We headed up the hill and stayed the night at a reasonably new hotel. The hotel was right on the top of the hill and as Rob and I drank our first cold beer we looked out to the sea and spotted whales cruising up the coast.
Today we headed back to Dili. As I waited for Rob the locals gathered around. I gave them some more Steve rides the world stickers and they proceeded to stick them all over there scooter.
I arrived in Dili at 2pm with the fuel gauge showing 11km fuel remaining. I filled up at one of the petrol stations and people look in amazement when the fuel keeps flowing into the tank. It cost $21 to fill my tank, $3 for a scooter.
I headed back to the Hotel Colmera, checked in and jumped under a refreshing cold shower.
They key objective today was to pick up my Indonesian visit. I went to the embassy at 2pm and I was out with my visa within half an hour. I caught up with Rob, Liz and Con. These are the guys I will be riding through Burma with in February. We chatted about the trip and I bid them farewell until February.
Day 56 Wednesday 29th October 2014
I awoke to a 5:30am alarm. My eyes were stinging and another hour would have been nice. Today was the day I finally got moving. I have been looking forward to this.
I was out the door and riding at 6:30. It’s a great time of day here because it’s cooler and there is very little traffic.
I headed south west to Batugade which is the border crossing between East Timor and Indonesia. The road to Batugade was full of potholes and the bits that didn’t, had road works, lots of gravel and dust. To their credit they had watered most of the gravel in an attempt to stop the dust. The one thing you notice in East Timor is the lack of trades or skilled people. I watched a bricked pavement get laid; it looked like a dog's back leg. Manual labour is used for everything. No machines just people shovelling. Hard work!!
I flew through customs at the East Timor and Indonesian borders. The customs guys didn’t know how to complete the carnet so I showed them. No problems this time.