While we did a lot traveling this trip, I actually enjoy the car rides, you see a lot of the country you visit, not just the shiny “Instagramable” part, the real part.
I might not have been able to photograph them because there are fleeting moments on the side of the roads but there are the best part of a trip. The things that are edged in your memories, maybe because you didn’t get to preserve them on paper/in pixel, they get stuck in your brain more.
While we enjoyed the megapolis that was Ende we hadn’t quite arrived at our final destination so after a decadent night at our luxury hotel we took the road again and drove the 60kms, which took more than 1 hour and half (no highway in the Indonesian mountains!) to reach Kelimutu… home of the 3 colors crater lake.
En route we stopped to admire the ricefield, hardly a first for us but always impressive.
There are some rice fields that are specific to the region but unfortunately not on our near our path (more like opposite our path): The Lingko Spider Web Rice Fields.
There are the result of the traditional communal agriculture of the indigenous Manggarai people. Centuries ago, the cultivated land, known as lingko, was shared by the entire village. The communal fields were circular, with the lodok at the center, where ceremonial rituals were held around the harvest.
Each family was allocated a segment of the rice field, radiating from the center outward. (Each was inaugurated by the sacrifice of a water buffalo.) The more resources a family had, the larger their slice of the pie; at the time, the rice fields were shaped like pie charts. Later, the paddies were further subdivided by the decedents of the original owners, leading to the striking, web-like shape of the lingko today.
And to round up the day of travel we made a little side trip to Blue Stone Beach; where you can find stones that are blue on a beach…and a geologist who try to explain the what, when and why (geologist not there all the time!)
We made it to Ende and splurged on the hotel… $26 a night.
Probably J favorite hotel, most likely because of the (spotty but real) WiFi. Friends could be reassured that he was still alive. I know we shouldn’t spoil our kids with such high end accommodations but Ende is not really touristy so you get what you get 😉
On a side note we were also happy for the connection as our daughter who is studying in Switzerland wasn’t feeling well, went to see the doctor and got surgery for appendicitis, all within 24 hours and all on her own (but with support from her amazing roommates).