We are headed north in the channel that we had such a good ride down, 11.5 knots, but it is uphill heading north again, 2 knots now against the current. This will turn out to be a 14 hour day where the trip down was 6 hours, oh the forces of Neptune.
The time in Bali was too short, as always, I want to come back and will. Bali gets a bad rap from the mass tourism and wild party scene. It is there but easily avoided. It is the first over populated Indonesian island for sure, traffic is insane. It does hold many treasures, temples, scenery and yes some fun places to go.
I was very glad to reconnect with former Furthur crew, Marisa, who I took the Dive Mater course with. She has gone ahead and become an instructor and is now working in the dive industry here in Bali. She hooked us up with a dive day and was our dive master, I did get a chuckle when she set up my dive gear. This area and at this time is famed for the rare and wonderful Mula Mula fish. Often called the Sun Fish, this huge creature likes colder water so comes to the island just off Bali. This is where the Indian Ocean meets the inland sea and the effects are wild. The afore mentioned currents are totally unpredictable I learned, hence this slow day. The water temperature drops 20 degrees from Gilli A just 35 miles north. I pulled out my rarely used wet suit.
We did three dives, the first produced absolutely huge Black Bottom Manta Rays, twice the size of any we had seen. These majestic creatures danced about all the divers like giant swooping birds. The second dive was a dice roll to see Mula Mula, we dove off a point that can have brutal currents and the dive master went deeper to see if any Mula Mula were about. They come to this “cleaning station” to meet with fish who live off organs living on other fish, the true symbiotic relationship. No luck there we went to a long drift dive along a straight reef. We saw a mass amount of colorful fish and the water was a bit warmer than the 69 degrees F on the last dive. We were spread along the reef I had joined the dive master in deeper water and I glanced to my left and there was the most incredible fish I have seen, the Mula Mula. Knowing the spook easy I kept as still as possible and drifted alongside it until he took off for deeper water. A great day of diving, and a great day reconnecting with a past crew member.
We went back to Furthur to meet another new crew member, Julieta, from Argentina. I think this makes 14 countries for crew on Furthur. We began to plan our departure. While the girls where shopping I watched the daily procession of photo shoot participants that come to the marina. Mostly pros come and use the backdrop of the yachts but this group was a real wedding group. I invited them aboard and the happy couple now has their wedding pictures on Furthur. Weddings are a huge deal here; often the family spends huge amounts on the event. I have seen the photo shoots throughout Asia, always beautiful brides fully adorned. Unlike western folks, these people will probably only get to do this once, hahaha.
So an early rise and off we go. But before we leave the area I just have to pop by Gilli Air one more time. I e mailed the boys at the Freedom Bar and they are awaiting Capt. Brian and the Black Gibson, jamming tonight!