This is Indonesia

I wanted to spend my last days in a completely untouristy place. I was looking for an island in the remote Talaud-Sangir archipelago. Siau is only named in an old Lonely Planet and there is almost no info online. On google maps I saw it has the highest volcano in the area and a walkable size. A decission was made, let’s see what people are up to there.

First surprise, the volcano was active and I could see a smoke stream during day time and the red top at night time, lava!

Pretty soon I realized how things would work there. I was the hot chick in the bar. When having breakfast a doctor tried to pay for me and he draw me a map with some places I could visit. He apologized we was busy and couldn’t take me around that day.

Sunset in Siau
Sunset at “my village”

At hte market I got the biggest surprised faces and smiles and I was treated as a rock star. Many people offering to help. I decided to go walking to another village. Policimen stopped me and took me to their office… to give me some coffee and biscuits and tell me they could stop official cars to give me a lift. I preferred walking. Two minutes later a guy on a motorbike offered me a ride. On the way he told me I could stay at his place in a small village. He seemed a nice dude with long hair and huge smile so I accepted and ended up staying with his family 3 days. His wife would feed me like a mum, with 3 aboundant meals a day and lots of snacks in between. Lots of fish, rice, cassava, nuts, fruits…

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At the village I spent some time with the fishermen and went on their tiny boats. We cooked and ate the fish they catched by the sea. I borrowed their home-made wooden goggles for some nice snorkelling… good times.

With the fishermen
With the fishermen

The place was very beautiful. The houses were scattered at the volcano slope on the way down to the sea. A lot of fruits and nuts growing around, especially nutmeg, the main village export. Btw, there was a ladyboy around, big wtf?.

Sunset by the sea
Sunset by the sea

They invited me to another religious ceremony. Don’t know what it was about but I had to sign in Indonesian. It was only for men and at ended with lots of food, prepared by the women. I like.

The way people were treating me there was unbelivable, extreme hospitality. Everyone trying to please me and wanting to host me. An example, here what happened when I mentioned I like coconuts.

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My host was driving me around the island step roads on his bike, felt like a roller-coaster. For my farewell they slaughtere a chicken and prepared me lots of fried nuts for my trip. The family got an extra motorbike so all of them could come to the ferry to say goodbye. Btw, the doctor from the first day was texting me to take me around as well but no signal at the village.

I went to the island looking for the real Indonesia and I was overwhelmed, much better than I expected.

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