I can’t bear to think that the reason I’m back in Bali is that I’m slowly making my way back up to Bangkok and then home.
Also, the internet connection on Gili T was so unbearable I haven’t even checked my mail in like 5 days.
In any event, I’m in Sanur (nicknamed “snore” ), Bali, diving with Crystal Divers. I left Gili Trawangan because I had done all the interesting dives at least twice. Time for something new! But the lovely people I met there were sure to send me off with a hangover and no sleep for my two last days. The first hangover started with a “snorkel test” – a Blue Marlin tradition. A newly certified divemaster is dressed in some absurd costume (in this case, a guy in pink panties and a green cloth mask and cape) and made to drink half a liter of whatever booze, etc., the instructors feel like mixing together through a (you guessed it) snorkel. Then everyone goes to a bar and gets drunk. I joined in, got to sleep around 5, then was up at 8 to go on the 9 am dive.
The second hangover started with a lovely dinner with Ginny (my buddy during my rescue diver course), Luis (my instructor), Lauren (a divemaster tranee that I bonded with during some ridiculous dives we did together), Lauren’s boyfriend and fellow diver Simon (who is in charge of diving & sailing safety at the University of Tasmania – how cool). After two bottles of wine with dinner we moved to Sama Sama, a great bar with love reggae music every night. We met up with Nico, a delightfully French dive instructor who I also got to know very well (he’s good friends with Luis). Nico is hilarious when he’s had a few Bintang: He and Luis were talking about how instructors aren’t allowed to hook up with their students…at least until *after* the course is over. “No penetration without certification!” cried Nico. Heh heh. Which turned into the diving version of the casting couch: “It should be, ‘No certification without penetration!'” I tried to get him to dance on the bar, but he wasn’t drunk enough.
The following morning (after 8 hours of sleep in 2 days of diving and drinking) at 8 am I began the epic 12-hour journey (boat, mini-van, ferry, mini-van) to make the 100 or so km from Gili T to Sanur. Thank goodness I managed a nap on the ferry, or I would have been wrecked. Today my alarm went off at 6:15 am, and I was on the bus to the dive spot by 7. We did two lovely dives near the village of Candidasa. Tomorrow we go to Manta Point (where I’m 85% assured to see at least one manta) and then a dive off the nearby island of Nusa Pendia. And then that’s it! Sniff. Tuesday it’s off to Bangkok via Kuala Lumpur, one night in BKK, and the <gasp> back to NYC. Christ amighty.
And then…who knows? I know many of you don’t want to hear this, but after this trip I think it’s pretty unlikely that I’m staying in New York. There’s this whole other world and life beyond the myopic, ego-driven worlds of New York and the “internet industry.” I find this other world a lot more interesting, and I think *it* likes *me* better, too.
But let’s not think too hard about that until at least Friday, shall we?