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Many Adventures of a Nomadic Poet A young poet with Asperger's makes travel his passion, and away he goes...

Waterfalls & Rice Fields

INDONESIA | Sunday, 1 November 2015 | Views [2004]

Wandering through rice fields, receiving a hydraulic massage from a waterfall, and teaching English! What do they all have in common? The answer is that I've done all three today. Gede woke me early as negotiated a lift to the waterfalls with Ahmed, one of his students. Laws regarding driving motorscooters are much stricter here; in Bali you can get away with a 50,000 rupiah fine but on Lombok the police will confiscate your scooter if caught driving without a license. As we drove toward Benang Kelambu and Benang Stokel Waterfalls we had a nice view of Mt. Rinjani as we drove slowly through the Sunday market. There are three sets of waterfalls and the cost varies between visiting one, two, or all three sets. Ahmed would help me get a discount and he waited by the front whilst I was guided to the waterfalls. "air terjun" is the Bahasa word for "waterfall" and the first we'd come to is Benang Stokel Waterfall only a short walk the entrance. Being Sunday, the waterfalls were absolutely packed with people yet I was the only foreigner. Locals love taking their picture with foreigners since many have never even seen one! A large group of primary school kids wanted their photo taken with me. You can certainly not come here and expect a peaceful communion with nature as there are a lot of people as well as vendors selling snacks, cigarettes, and drinks. A half hour away is Benang Kelambu, which is even more picturesque and crowded. Loads of locals wanted their photo taken with me as I was trying to get soaked. The waterfalls are such a refreshing dip on a hot day! 

Ahmed would take me to his family's rice field only a short drive from Gede's home. Rice fields are at their most photogenic when they're bright green but the rice is ready to be harvested when the field is brownish yellow. Ahmed's father would give me some corn-on-the-cob that tasted so fresh! Corn starts to deteriorate as soon as it's picked and it often doesn't make it to store shelves for days and to farmers' markets for several hours. I'd shoot a short video for the Fearless Journey page as the midday prayer call eminated from the nearby mosque. It was really nice of Ahmed to bring me here as I wore a traditional wide-brimmed hat.

There is often very little, if any, shade in rice fields so a hat is important. Ahmed's grandmother would allow me to take her photo.

Rice is perhaps the most consumed food on the planet. From Cuba to Guatemala, from Japan to Indonesia, from Peru to Costa Rica, from Tonga to Fiji, rice is consumed in abundance and in nearly every country I've visited I've had a rice dish of some description. It's often said the world would starve without rice. After Ahmed brought me home it was time to teach some more English! I worked on verbs with a student who has very poor English. Gede told me he often doesn't show up for class and we both told him that if he wants to learn he has to be motivated. When I worked with him he did really well. He just needs to get to class. Rohim and Jirhan we supposed to pick me up this evening and invite me to their home but they never showed up. Gede told me yesterday that foreigners aren't supposed to stay at an Indonesian home for more than 24 hours because it's believed they're making money off that person. One of the students is a police officer so nobody was going to say anything, and besides, I'm doing my part by teaching here. 

Today would mark my final full day in Lombok as I'd head back to Bali with so much more to unfold! 

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