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RTW-career-gap-year kinda mission till June 2010, I think.

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Green and brown and blue

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Yesterday was an interesting day.

To be fair to all the preceding days in my life, most of them were pretty interesting too. Usually one learns a new fact or sees something different every day. Part time courses help in that regard. As do hobbies. Much to my chagrin, so does TV. Yesterday was a bit of both; learning and seeing.

It looked to be another repeat of the last few days since the swell has died. Eat lots. Talk to the neighbours. Maybe paddle in the sea out front. Eat some more. Read. Sleep. I think the word is indolent? I did try inject a bit of variety.

I sat at Signal Shack and on impulse took pictures of the traffic, such as it were. 4 scooters, 45 minutes and a hot and bothered photographer later put paid to that time wasting, er, useful endeavour.

As I sat planning my escape from here I had unexpected guests. Well, I didn't, my host did. The island's resident doctor, Dr A, dropped in as he had invited her around to do some email and internet stuff. My host is still AWOL in Kupang.

So being the good surroguest host, I entertained the 2 visitors. Dr A had brought with her the resident doctor from Ndau, Dr O. He is on a 2 week holiday on Rote. Ndau is a tiny island off the coast of Rote.

Dr A is an exuberant and infectiously happy person, with a sense of fun and humour that belies her possible middle age. I find it difficult to accurately guess ages here. The Indonesians appear to age very well.

Dr O is a young man, recently qualified and breaking the apron strings. He grew up in Jakarta and had lived at home all his life prior to this move. Quieter and more reserved, he did give us a fascinating insight into his favourite style of preWagnerian Italian opera. The coversation meandered all over a variety of topics; Dr O being almost a pawn in local politics, the non payment of local government staff for the past few months, my experiences of growing up in South Africa and so on and so forth.

They were taking their leave to visit another friend, a French chap called Jerome, when I was invited to go with. Have scooter, will travel.

We went through the small village of Bo'a and then carried on the island circular road. This had, in places deteriorated into a very dusty,rocky, dirt track. Dr O had to get off the scooter every so often so Dr A, who drives like a maniac, could traverse the steep, gravelly slopes.

We arrived at Jerome's compound. Beautiful but remote. A very isolated place to live.

This photo is from the other side of the little bay that Jerome's house fronts onto. His house is actually not in the picture, being farther over to the right.

In the foreground you can see the parched brown, lifeless grass. We drove past huge swathes of grass like this, grey, seemingly dead grass. The cows and goats still grazing on that. It is the end of the dry season, which is why everything is so dehydrated.

In the background you see the verdant green plantlife where there is water, a variety of bushes and trees growing in the ample light.

Sandwiched between the 2, a thin strip of blinding white sand and the azure and everpresent turquoise ocean.

To my mind, those are the colours of Rote.
25th Oct 2009, 00:55