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I give up

My visa expires on Wednesday, and nobody needs crew around here, so I booked a ticket to SF on Monday. It was almost free with frequent flier miles and I will get to visit the airports of Bangkok and Frankfurt on a nearly 50-hour itinerary.

I could have flown to Singapore or Australia and tried again but I'm getting tired of spending time and money being a tourist, and there simply aren't boats going in the direction I want to go, only boats sailing to Malaysia and Thailand and bumming around. I just feel like going home. I'd still like to try this again in the future, but I can do it any time, and next time I can pick a place where there's favorable wind. So far I haven't spoken to a single sailor here who says they've had more than a day or two of proper sailing. Everybody is just motoring against the current without wind, so what's the point? I've already done plenty of motoring on the ferries here.

I spent two nights in Lombok and a day hanging around the Medana Bay Marina. I met about 8 boats from the Sail Indonesia rally. Most of them were there in advance of the rest of the pack due to engine problems. Only one of them, a boat from Fiji, needed crew, but the captain was apparently an abusive alcoholic, according to his one crew member. The captain, a drunken French man, dismissed his crewmate's suggestion that he needed extra crew, and I decided not to bother trying to convince him otherwise.

With a less than ideal couchsurfing arrangement and little encouragement from the sailors at the marina, I hopped on the ferry back to Bali this morning and am now in Padang Bai on the northeast coast. I got a mattress on the second floor of an inn, in the open air overlooking the surf. I'll have three nights here before I head down to the airport for my flight(s).

I plan to visit my brother in SF for a few days and see what I feel like doing. I may decide to bike to Boston, in which case I'll update the header art on this blog appropriately.

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