Well then, it was a year ago this week that I mothballed all my sound recording gear in Manchester, and with the lowering Mancunian sky resembling nothing so much as a sodden, grey, seventies sleeping bag, I departed the Northwest, heading out to the verdant wilds of Indonesia to experience a total eclipse of the sun.
When all the astronomical excitement was over my travel companion and I were due to we embark on a motorbike adventure into the backwaters of Sulawesi to see what other weirdness there was to be seen. It wasn’t disappointing.
The central Sulawesian city of Palu was on the line of totality, and the local population were more than a little bit astonished at the sheer numbers of people who arrived to witness the eclipse. Palu is a largely unvisited backwater, catering mainly to transient dive tourists making their way to some of the more pristine obscure reefs to be found in the vicinity. It has to be one of the friendliest places on earth! My pal and I were treated like rock stars wherever we went. It got a bit much in the end…maybe I’m not cut out to be a rock star after all. Mark seemed to cope.
The eclipse itself was a mindblower. Perfect blue skies and a totality of over two and a half minutes. No photos ever do justice to witnessing one of these things…It’s so easy to become an eclipse addict!
Motorcycling into the back country was just as rewarding, we made so many good friends. I can’t wait to go back. Sulawesi is a paradise. We were lucky enough to see a forest full of Spectral Tarsiers in Tangkoko National park and the wildlife off Bunaken island was jawdropping…a 2km vertical reef cliff with almost 100% coral cover, turtles, shark, manta and dolphins.
Here are a few pics from the trip to distract from a freezy wet winter evening in Manchester!
Take me back! Did I mention the Tropical Discount Scheme?
Might have overpacked slightly…check out that lovely helmet!
Dabu-dabu is a local spicy sauce.Its gorgeous.
The earthly paradise that is Bunaken beach.
Saw these legs in the shower:
They belonged to her. No gigantic spiders were harmed in the making of this blog. When I released her she ran straight under Marks floorboards 🙂
The rather grandly named Trans-Sulawesian Highway, just before it turned into a rutted dirt track!
Accommodation at Tangkoko National Park.You don’t have to even leave your huts…the wildlife comes in to find you!
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