Location: Kupang indonesia
The morning started off with the best wake up call (as I was told by Hans), which was the sound of me saying, “There are pancakes for breakfast.” Tim made regular pancakes, gluten-free, and vegan to please everyone’s pallets. Not to mention all of the fixings for the top. I’d say it was a great start to the day. During breakfast, everyone talked about what they were going to do on land, and we all came to the general consensus that we wanted to A) go to Crystal Cave and B) load up on snaackkksss. After breakfast, everything got their things together and headed to shore. Stepping onto shore for the first time, we were immediately greeted by locals who helped us to pull in our boat. We walked up the steps from the beach to see scooters and taxis zooming by in mayhem but somehow order at the same time. Right off the bat, the people there were happy to see us, and many of them even asked for pictures. We found some taxis that were able to take us up to the cave, and from there, we were off.
The taxi played loud Indonesian music, which certainly set the mood for excitement. We passed some amazing street art, children walking to school, some goats, and homes of the locals. As soon as we made it to the caves, we continued our boat roll call procedure, where everyone calls out their number. Once we knew we had the whole crew, a look of confusion seemed to set onto people’s faces. We realized that it didn’t really look like there were any caves nearby. The area was seemingly barren, and we were blocked by a barbwire and dead coral fence that we had to wait for someone to unlock for us. After about 15 minutes the man finally came and let us in. We all followed him down and soon realized that there was much more to the landscape than we first expected. We carefully inched down into the cave and were delighted to see a pool of crystal clear water waiting for us at the bottom. Even the people who hadn’t planned on swimming immediately set their things down to dive in. The next hour or so consisted of diving from various heights into the water. Alan did a copious amount of flips and dives, Julia put one of the Indonesian women (who didn’t know how to swim) on her back and swam around with her. Ruben even convinced me to jump from a higher rock that I wouldn’t have on my own. Leaving the cave, everyone was bubbly, and that experience ranked on many people’s “top 5” list as I discussed with Emily on the taxi ride back to town.
Next stop, food! Some people went off to find places to get lunch, and others ( me included) went straight for the grocery stores to see what snacks we could find. Tighe bought some ice cream flavored Oreos, which apparently are banned in the US because they make your mouth cold. However, we all concluded that they kind of just tastes like toothpaste. Hans loaded up on a cup of noodles and introduced me to a Japanese lemon drink that was beyond refreshing in the heat. After everyone loaded up on seemingly delicious ( and maybe some mysterious) snacks, we headed back towards the boat. Many of us stopped for some souvenirs, including bracelets, scarves, and fake Rolex watches ( cough cough, Jay). While waiting for the boat to take us back, we cut up some fresh mango and enjoyed it together.
Back on the boat, we finally got to jump off into the water, which made shower time that much more fun. After the flips, cannonballs, and shampoo suds were done with we worked to get the boat ready to sail. After dinner, we shared our appreciation at Squeeze as well as what our favorite season was and why. It was amazing to hear how amazing everyone’s day was. For most people, the whole day was their appreciation because they just couldn’t pick one thing! After the Squeeze, we tidied up and continued on our way. Next stop, Komodo Island!