Take off & cast off
There's a bonus to flying in the early morning. Getting up at 3:00am is not it. Sunrise in the clouds on the other hand. Gorgeous!
After an uneventful flight it was nice to check-in to the airport Novotel to stretch, shower, sleep, and prepare for the 'death boat' in the morning. First things first though, priorities: secure a local SIM card with a good chunk of data allowance, enjoy a massage at the in-house spa, and find me a cocktail! (in that order). All items on the list were successfully ticked off without fuss. Then it was early to bed before another early morning.
Five o'clock rolled around far too quickly, but it was an early pick-up in order to get to the port for what could possibly be my final moments. You see, according to Lonely Planet the sea between Bali and Gili T could get pretty rough. That's not exactly life threatening but I'll admit to preparing myself for what could be a quest hour and a half of seasickness. Part two of Lonely Planet's advice was less reassuring; the boats are unregulated and there have been accidents where people were killed. Wow! Thanks for the confidence LP.
Not known for letting risk of death deter my desire to explore the world, and with travel insurance paid up, I approached my speedy vessel; the Golden Queen. She seemed reasonable. Admittedly though, on boarding I secured a spot nearest the door and with a clear, unobstructed path to the exit. A young European couple seemed to have a similar plan and sat across the isle from me. Their infant (12 - 18 months perhaps) was prepared, wearing a life jacket in a positively frightening shade of florescent yellow. None of us were taking chances.
I was ready. In the event of an incident it's every man, woman, and child for themselves. I have a phone and a bottle of vodka to save! As it turns out, the journey was without death. I was given a bottle of water and mints, and they played Star Wars on the telly. I'm not sure if the Travecalm worked or I was actually quite the sea woman. Bottom line though, arrival on Gili T came without vomiting or death. A positive start to the holiday really.