The rest of my time was spent on a road trip with three Timorese dudes in a rickety pick-up. I will list a couple of the highlights here.
(1) My crazy driver. The driver is a terribly nice guy who speaks not a lick of English. Sometimes he would talk to me in Portuguese because I am white, and I would nod, but we never really got anywhere. In addition to being a total kamikaze on the winding mountainous dirt roads, he liked to lecture the other two guys about how much he knew about Americans. Did you know we hate smoking? In fact, not even allowed to smoke in restaurants in
(2) Accommodation. Rural East Timor is seriously lacking in availability of Motel 8's. I for to stay in some lovely "hotels", which though lacking in electricity and running water, nevertheless came complete with all god's multi-legged and winged creatures, and plumbing that would have disgusted my Peace Corps age self.
(3) Meeting the people. This was actually kind of fun. Some got really excited to have someone that came all the way from *
Other exciting things from the trip included a fallen tree in the roadway that we needed to find an ancient old man with a machete to chop up for us. Fortunately, the tree produced a pulpy seed pod that could be munched while waiting. Unfortunately, judging by the reaction of my intestinal tract, they actually weren’t edible to humans. There was also the musical selection. I spent three days listening to an Indonesian man sing a falsetto versions of such American classics as “Happy Birthday” and “Happy Days”, while being poorly accompanied by an electric piano. On repeat. It had somewhat of a Jack from the Shining effect on me…
It wasn’t all bad though. I got to go diving, always a highlight. And I am spending the day in