Monday, March 10, 2008

Boat Trip To Wasior

The journey to Wasior in Irian Jaya was really a long and hectic one. It took me 7 hours by plane and 18 hours by boat. The Celebes Air Boeing 737 took off from Jarkata airport at 11.30pm with a brief transist at Ujung Pandang in Sulawesi and it landed in the airport on Biak Island at 5.30am. From there I took a Twin Otter which only has the capacity to carry 19 passengers, to Manokwari on the mainland of the Indonesian side of Papua. The ordeal was just beginning. From Manokwari to Wasior it was a slow and torturing 18-hour boat journey. The wooden motor launch which carried me was overcrowded with people and cargoes as well as domestic animals. The heat, the filthy air and the extremely loud sound of music were so unbearable that for most of the entire 18 hours' journey, I opted to stand in the open air infront of the boat. Luckily the return journey took only 16 hours because the current was in favour of us. Most areas in Irian Jaya remain undeveloped and transportation to many destinations is by boat only.

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