Year End 2015 | The Island To Remember

[Gili Trawangan, January 2012]

I packed my tiny suitcase with mostly loose tank tops and only three short pants. I thought I could really use some real getaway again before another round of college-hood in February, so when enough money was saved, I booked a hotel, cheap flight tickets and flew to Mataram on the 29th of December, bringing with me a love on my right, and friends on my left. I'll be kissing sunny Gili hello again.

We landed in Mataram greeted by thick grey clouds, it was not sunny yet the air was clear. We made several stops on the way to the bay to take pictures, I remember doing the same last August. This time the island's packed with tourists during high seasons. I didn't see most of the people and the things I saw the last time I was here and my expectation was let down in the beginning but then I thought that's what life does when you expect so much. In the end I got over it and the getaway continued.

Things were a little hectic and our trip got shortened. The tensity of our first day faded the next morning and it was the last day in December 2011. It started off sunny and we all got sun kissed. Spliffs were always around but I never overdid them. A part of me wanted to stay drunk until the end of our getaway but something held me back inside, I had a feeling I needed to keep half of me sober in case something comes up. I had so much fun irregardless, as if nothing could ever go wrong, I had the moments I needed regardless.

Several hours before counting down we went back to the hotel to shower and washed off sticky sand all over our skin and headed out to grab a bite to eat before drinks. Tourists I bumped into kept telling me I looked pretty and so I felt pretty, though it's probably the make up Michelle helped me put on. She's pretty great with make up she put a good one on her face herself, her eye liner was blue it went match made in heaven with her tangerine hair. We had our NYE dinner at a restaurant near our hotel. It was a cheap place, but the food was unbelievably delicious. We rented bikes during our stay in the island but on NYE we didn't take them with us. The street was filled with techno and reggae beats and people were dancing like crazy. The island was vastly alive. It was too crowded that me and my boyfriend got separated with the rest of our friends while swimming across the crowd. We ended up watching the firing parties from a distance sitting in the sand while counting down. Booze were overflowing, we're all kissing and shouting 'Happy New Year!' and people were getting drunk and noisy yet I felt safe even being in the middle of a sea of strangers. Everything up until the afternoon I took off from the island was a beautiful mess I gladly tolerated.

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• A girl getting a henna tattoo and a monkey eating coconut •
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• First sunset on the boat, crossing over to Gili Trawangan •
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• On our way to the beach on our second day •
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• Passing by beautiful bungalows on our way to the beach •
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• Grey beach weather •
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• Me writing on my journal, taken by Michelle •
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• Michelle doodling on my Van Gogh's note book •
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• Coral Beach, Gili Trawangan •
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• Kids swimming and playing around in the water •
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• Second sunset at Sunset Bar. There were still locals dancing with fire •
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• From where I counted down to a brand new year, taken somewhere dark alongside the beach •
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• Tracking our way to Coral Beach on the last day in December 2011 •
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• Several seconds after counting down. We saw a shooting star for the first time •
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• First morning of 2016 •
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• Very delish street food •
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• Last dinner in the island •
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• Crossing back to Mataram to catch our flight back to Jakarta the morning after NYE •
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• Half way home •