The build up to the wet season was dense and humid, slow moving and calming. However the seasons have begun to change here with confusion and unpredictability, the rains have begun to fall, and my travels and thought processes, flip, change, flow and stutter somewhat like a game of Tetris. A very easy game of Tetris though, with no wall at the top stopping you from continuing the game.
It may have been because my volunteering at the Canossian Sisters Womens Colledge had finished, that friends id made were going home, or just because my body was craving a change, but for a week there I experienced a small bout of travel anxiety. It is strange this feeling, but I put it down to a quote I read in that week… “You are free, that is why you are lost” Franz Kafka. Ahhhh yes other people have felt this feeling, im not alone. Following this i flipped a coin and the answer was to go to Los Palos for the week.
NOTE: This anxiety could also have been caused by an evil monster of a hangover, drinking has been an irregularity over the last few months, so my brain aint used to it. My housemate Sarahs going away Sesta Festa Halloween style was Friday night, bombarded with mask making, dancing, singing, bread fruit eating, slipping, loving, two step one step stumbling, bottle breaking, back yard barfing, goodbye breakfast. So sad to say goodbye to you Sarah, so I won’t, ill wave and say ‘hello sarah, hellloooooo’
LOS PALOS- The times I’ve spent here on stop overs or small visits have always had an impact, and I know that this place and the people here, will not ever leave my mind. The Baukau family seems very intertwined with the Los Palos crew, and it is such a gift to stay at the Womens centre with Dibby Deb, Meg, Emily and Ona. The evenings washed down with music from some local boys, serenading our surrounds and putting a smile on your face from ear to ear. You cant even describe the feeling, and the songs, they are just so beautiful… But its beginning to get frusterating, the longer your in a place, the more you want to be able to communicate with the people, and yes you can establish a friendship and a general knowledge that these are good people, interesting, passionate, artistic people, but oh to have a conversation. Ha. This makes me certain that one day I will come back and spend an extended amount of time here.
It is time for Emily to head back to Australia so they had a going away festa at the house Sunday night, this night was full groove, and I made the good choice to stay away from the palm wine, but ended up dancing till sunrise to both live music and poppy Timor music. Traditionally here if a guy asks you to dance you cant say no, and the dance is a casual two step one step routine, up close and personal, and can get a little bit intense when they decided to danca kisomba. Very funny, especially considering the height difference between me and most Timorese men.
After rest and recouperation, Anche pops over and Daniela, Marqi and I decided to go fishing for the day to a large lake close to Tutuala with her and her brothers. We ride the Motorbikes for an hour or so to a small village on the outskirts of the lake and pick up our bamboo fishing lines and worms. Greeted by the village people with surprise, we assume that not many Malai travel to this side of the lake.
We travel on till the marshes are apparent and silver water masks the mud, pull up, and head down to the edge of the lake. I stopped. The others entered. Surely there must be crocodiles in here I thought to myself, whilst swapping nervous glances with Daniella. I enter slowly, respecting this beautiful place, it is Lulik which means sacred, and we are not to talk about the place whilst there, no comments, opinions, questions, just BE. This is hard to do when your chest deep in dark water surrounded by sunken trees, reeds and……….?
Of course when your not meant to think about crocodiles, big, hungry, sneaky crocodiles, the only thing in your mind is “crocodile, fuck there has to be crocs in here, this is ridiculous… oh but its so beautiful, im really happy to be here, it is so special.. but ohhhhhhh shitttt what was that shadow in the water” the only times that I wasn’t thinking about them, I may have been distracted by a fisherman talking or a bird flying by, I managed to catch a fish, so I caught two fish that day and was very happy. All in all we went home with about 25 fish, and gutterd, fried em and put em on a plate, nom nom nom.
A Few more days in Los Palos and the decision be made that I am going to come here for a couple of weeks and start some tais- traditional cloth- jewellery making workshops.
To continue on with the subject of Fishing, Daniela, Anche and I decided to head to Com for the weekend as they had the East Timor fishing competition on, we spent a couple of days chilling out, sleeping under the stars, and dining on festival food, as our friend is one of the organizers, good to have connections. Com is a Beautiful place but you can really see that tourism is going to have a large impact here, this is the first place in Timor that I have been approached to by something as walking down the beach.
So this week be dedicated to blogging, diary filling, bag packing, and a bit of research. It will be so sad to leave Baucau, but the time feels rite and im looking forward to hanging out in Los Palos getting creative and improving my poorly developed Tetun.