I dive at a shipwreck in Amed, shortly after dawn. Afterwards, stunned by the darkness and strangeness, I write this.
Lichen-encrusted, sprouting whorls of polyps and silicates. Pieces that have fallen into helpless decay. Velveteen fish with large unabashed eyes. Fins open and close in side-fan-flicks. The bumpheads are tooth-jutting, jaw-juttingly ugly, faces afixed in solemnical disgust. One huge one peels away from the flock to investigate us closer. Wringled green-grey dull skin. Moss-stained teeth. A jaw-wired-shut grimace.
A hawksbill turntle, beak downturned in an old man's disapproval. Eyes flick and twitch to take us in. Fins scoop with praciced motion through the water. Crazy-paving dark brown, cracked choc ice coating over yellowed white.
They wear scowls, these turtles. Everything underwater runs on slow motion. Flits of fish become miasma around the corals. Bluish water stains the ground brown and the corals yellowed. Its fins describe shapes. Nemo wrestles amongst the avid fingers of sea anemones.
Breathe, breathe. Hold breath frequently at different volumes. Long to exhaule. Ears that refuse to pop, an eye that keeps filling with salt water. So many tribes, all around, everywhere. I need to know their names. From above, snorkelling, they look mindless. When amongst them, they look like life. Like nature. Nature eerily close. This doesn't happen above the surface.
Drive in the darkness to the end of Amed, where a Balinese band play decent reggae covers. This is backpacker music and oddly hard to find in Bali. I eat a glass noodle salad, sip a cold beer, write this.
Happiness tonight is live reggae, a scratchy singer's voice, and warm night air. Myopic eyes, contact lens fogged, but so all is sensuality, all is warmth. Human connection and my own sense of mobility and independence to take me to those places of connection is a continuous ouroboros I treasure. Do I have the fire? What is the fire now?
The next day I snorkel through two bays in Amed. There is another shipwreck. Looking down, face plunged into the sea, I spy a thick and ugly face glowering below. I'm so surprised I yell into my mask. Thick-lipped and ugly, a huge black moray eel poking its head out. I turn, twist, peer through shoals of tiny flickering fish to see it again. It retreats slowly into the shipwreck. Cold and warm currents twine from underneath.
In the other bay, I swim out so far I can scarcely see the bottom. I like doing this, because I'm not a good swimmer, never have been, so it's a treat to feel myself float and pull through the water without fear of drowning. I like feeling like a speck floating upon deep water, looking at a seabed so far below that I can't see it. It's like floating above a mystery. I find a tiny sunken temple closer to the shore. It would be pleasant to come out here to pray.
Not quite a blog, but things that I have written for myself.