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It didn't quite turn out that way. When boarding the boat for the 2 hour journey from Bali to Lombok, I met a traveller named Martin who enthralled me with stories of med school and hiking Mount Bromo.

I had heard from Brenna that there were lots of turtles in the water, and that the island was a good place to chill out and enjoy beautiful beaches.

Seeking alone time and getting much more in Indonesia A month ago, I awoke on my last day on the largest of the Gili Islands, tucked between Bali and Lombok islands in Indonesia.

I awoke to birds chirping, leaves lightly blowing, plates clinking, oceans waving; I awoke to the sounds of paradise. The next morning, I rushed to the scuba shop and was kindly teased for showing up 15 minutes late. I wouldn't meet many people, and I'd keep to myself.


Afterward, someone mentioned a silent disco, and we danced together in silence with earphones on until 3 am. I'd look carefully under rocks and in coral for creatures of the sea, and move myself with subtle movements of my flippers. I also awoke to a deep sadness to be leaving not only a tiny beautiful place, but the unexpected group of friends I had made there as well.

We gorged ourselves on pretty cakes and desserts and stories from our various adventures. They shared inside jokes from Ubud and teased each other in a way that good friends do. I'd reflect on my time in Beijing and try to determine what it was that made living there so hard for me.

I didn't need the afternoon alone to write about it in my journal over a coffee. That precious dreamy sense of weightlessness that I can only know when I dive.