September 27th: Had a sleep in as it is only 12 miles to Badas, on the island of Sumbawa. Departed at 7:30am and had a nice cruise, not too much wind. We checked out the Harbour first but not a lot of room to anchor and it was a very industrial, commercial area so we all decided to head towards the bay called Batukuping. It was a bit roly and there are a lot of small fishing boats anchored but we decided to stay as we all needed groceries and Robbie wanted to top up on diesel. Bad mistake! Typically, before you have even dropped the anchor there is a local in a sampan trying to sell you something. So we met Borag (I keep thinking of him as Borat!!) anyway he’s a pretty cool dude for Indonesia, he has bleached the top part of his hair blonde (or yellow) and he is our man on the spot for Badas. Through Peter we organised a taxi (???) into town to the supermarket, diesel for all 3 boats and also a ride into town later today for a meal at a Chinese restaurant and also to attend the carnival that was on. The taxi turned out to be his friend’s truck – like a Mitsubishi 2 ton truck, slightly bigger than a Ute. So with Peter in the front and Robbie, Elizabeth, Heidi and myself perched in the back we set off for town. The driving in Indonesia is SCARY! Everyone just pulls out in front of you, they all drive very fast and there are thousands of motorcycles zipping here, there and everywhere. But, it was an experience! The town is about 5klms from the bay and mostly shops all the way in, apart from we did some rice paddies in the distance. It is certainly getting a bit greener as we are heading more West. We also had to draw out some more cash for the diesel, we needed about 12 million rupiah. There was an ATM next to the supermarket so we had to do multiple transactions as we could only get 1 million rupiah at a time. Supermarket was OK no fresh produce and no meat but we stocked up on some dry foods, chips for sundowners, tinned lychees, Cadbury chocolate and I got two of my moisturisers that I pay $50 for in Australia for $13 each, a bargain! We stopped at the markets and stocked up on some more fruit grapes, mangoes, paw paw and replaced the missing bananas. Was difficult getting it into the duck, launching the duck and getting back to the boat as it was so rough but we made it without losing anything, Peter lost a bottle of Bintang overboard, Per broke a bottle but our stuff just got a bit wet.
The diesel arrived with Borag and his mate in 14 drums for the first lot. At a cost of 8,000 rupiah per litre or roughly .80cents Australian per litre. What a disaster, it came in 25 litre containers and Robbie poured some of each container into a white bucket to check it but after 5 drums he called it quits and said no more, he poured the last few litres of each drum into a container and they were really dirty. Was a difficult situation for a while but Robbie stuck to his guns and refused to take the rest of the diesel. We had ordered 1000 litres and we took and paid for 140 litres, which will probably now cost us a few filters to clean it. He did watch as he poured the diesel into the tank and said it didn’t look too bad, so we are hoping that it was just the bottom of the containers that was contaminated. He thinks it was just the fact that they used dirty containers, the diesel itself probably wasn’t too bad.
We went back in the glorified taxi truck into town and had a very pleasant Chinese meal and then a walk around the carnival for an hour. It was a bit like a trade expo, very many people and children and they had the local schools doing traditional dancing which was just lovely.