Krakatau

I am blessed to have many years of travel and adventures throughout our great archipelago but I could not put off any more the urge to visit Krakatau.It is my time to finally feel and experience the place. It gave me shivers of wonder and excitement after I had a minor research about the majestic mountain. Studying the active mountain of 813m above sea level, had taught me such a meaningful history. The eruption in 1883 gave such an impact not just in Indonesia but also some parts of the world. The loud bang was heard thousand miles away and said to be the loudest; the huge tsunamis that occurred from it had killed more than 36.000 people and destroyed the 2/3 island itself, also the shock waves was recorded by all barographs around the world. It was such a huge incident. The Krakatau which was once a huge volcanic mountain; has now left three small islands which are Rakata Island, Panjang Island and Sertung Island. The eruption has caused a caldera formed in the middle of it. So, in 1927 a new island had emerged from the caldera that was formed in 1883 named Anak Krakatau – ‘Child of Krakatau’ and has erupted ever since; mostly the eruptive actions are called Strombolian eruptions which are defined as the mildly explosive. Every year the active mountain has grown strongly resembling like its mother.

21

I am not sure why but after knowing this, it had lighted my soul’s adrenaline instantly. By only saying the word Krakatau; an instant shift of mix feeling between magical, fear, dark, strong and wonder always emerge within my senses; Clashes together, went wild giving fuel to my imagination. I barely continued the imagination because the picture of it was too grand to imagine about – the event itself and the beauty the nature has given because of it. Well, I am grateful to have live at this moment of time and actually had the chance to absorb the beauty of the Krakatau today.
One day, I was watching the news and coincidently, the running text on the screen was giving information about the Krakatau or also known as the Krakatoa. The short informative message was telling the Indonesian audience that Krakatau is in the level of alert status. Instantly, I felt my tummy churns a little. Sitting down on the couch thinking the half of me was feeling the fear and the other half of me was a mix feeling of huge curiosity and the ‘need’ of me to go there, while my intuition tells me that there is an opportunity for me to have a safe adventure and that the Krakatoa is welcoming me and my friends presence. Probably, in the end I was just thinking positive about it. Whatever it is – the main point is; I just had to go there!
I had and will always love Lampung’s nature. The forest so thick and a beach full of shells. I felt like absorbing the nature’s energy and feel healthy forever. For me, I’d always love the damage roads, lack of signs and remote destinations. Strange? Well, with my travelling experience, that’s the beauty of having an adventure. You will earn your reward in every end of your destination; which is a nature so pure, that seems untouchable by humans. Oh, what kind of prize is better than that!

 

One day in March, I met my adventure buddies; Feri and Muhdi. We were already prepared for the Krakatau trip and we had coordinated with our local friends in Lampung. So, we decided to have a short road trip to Merak and take a Ferry Boat there to South Lampung. We started the journey at 10am from the Metropolitan City, Jakarta. We went through the toll road and reached the Terminal Terpadu Merak at Cilegon City by 14.00pm. We bought our ferry boat ticket trip to Bakauheni; a city and a port in the Southern Part of Lampung Province that departs at 15.30pm. I had my backpack bag on my back, small bag slinged around my shoulders, a luggage at one hand and a diving bag on one of my shoulders. Feri and Muhdi were also fully handed with their own belongings. In front of us were stairs that we need to struggle while carrying our bags until we walked through the bridge that takes us to the ferry boat. There were porters approaching us aggressively hoping we would give them our bags so they would get some money. Eventually, we had one porter helping us, that we paid 20.000 Rupiah for his service at the end route. We went inside the ferry boat and looked for a place to nestle for 2 and a half hours boat ride. The boat went smoothly along the Sunda strait. At 18.00pm the ferry boat harboured at Bakauheni Port which is one of the busiest port in Lampung Land. The port was built to connect the 2 Islands of Sumatra and Java through Sea Transportation and people may continue using the gateway road called Jalur Lintas Sumatra – Sumatra Cross Country to continue their journey to any parts of Sumatra which starts from the South of Sumatra at Bakauheni to North of Sumatra at Banda Aceh; with its total road length of 2.508,5 km. Now, we are supposed to be picked up with the local driver. After we struggled carrying our belongings out from the Ferry Boat towards the exit area of the port, the porters and transportation agents were very aggressive in making deals with us. The funny part was when we said “No!” couple of times to around 15 transportation agents that were shouting in front of our faces, competing to grab our attention. They sort of pretend that they didn’t listen to us, hoping we would make a deal in the end with one of them and nonchalantly ignored our concerned face. I thought of this moment funny and I looked at Muhdi responding to them with no success and got stressed with it. Finally, a man approached us understanding that we didn’t understand the port’s habit work; he said for us to scoot out of them because they are always at the spot shouting for transportation service to all passengers that came out from the Ferry Boat until they have succeeded. We walked away and I saw the scene from a long distance. I laughed at it because it seems that we had gotten into a trap of a hive with no chance on getting out and a saviour had helped us. Not long, we met our local driver that took us to Bandar Lampung, The Capital City of Lampung Province at 18.30pm.

We had a good time enjoying the city for culinary, history, meeting the locals and some tourism places but my mind always sticks with Krakatau. Arief, our local friend told me that, “We will see how the Anak Krakatau goes today or tomorrow because today it is still batuk-batuk – coughing” – as he meant mild eruptions. And continued joking that “Namanya juga anak kecil, kan batuk-batuk itu sudah biasa” – “That’s what a small child is, coughing is something usual”. He consistently helped us trying to get information from he’s friends all the time so we could safely dive around the Mountain and as a bonus climb it as well.

Finally, around a couple of days waiting for the journey towards the most iconic nature of Lampung; Arief told us that we could start the adventure by the next morning. We started leaving the Capital City around 10am by car. We also had our local friends coming with us on the other car including Arief and Pandu. We had some several stops and the last stop was loading on the diving equipments. There aren’t any dive centres yet in Lampung, so we have to coordinate with the Local Government of Marine & Fisheries. After the scuba cylinders, Buoyancy Control Devices and other diving equipments are filled in the car, we continued our journey to Pantai Canti – Canti Beach.

A long the road trip, I am pretty sure my friends are thinking the same with me. We have ignored the news and some of our friends back home gave us some warnings. To be honest, I don’t know what to expect yet from this trip. The weather also wasn’t really that good along the year and it has been heavy raining in some parts of Indonesia. Floods also have been occurred in some other countries. Then I thought to myself, why travel to Krakatau for diving and climbing in this kind of weather? Why risk it!? Oh well, I have always believe that there is always hope in any kind of situation and condition. As long as we always shine positive hearts and spread positive energy along the travelling. Asking the locals are always the best key in knowing and understanding the real exact condition of their nature because they live and grow up there to learn and know their own nature’s character.
We arrived around 12.30 pm at the small harbour. The weather was alright. In the middle of the day time, it was not too bright. I assume the sun was hiding a little bit somewhere. We unloaded our bags, diving equipments and other things from our cars to the ground and somebody had to coordinate with the boat to take us to the Krakatoa. Once the boat was ready, we loaded all our equipments to the boat and that’s when the weather turned gloomy.

I wasn’t really sure about the trip. It felt like we are heading towards a dragon’s nest at the wrong time and plan. The black cloud creeps in covering the sky as we move. All I have left in my heart was faith that God will protect our voyage and adventure. The boat wasn’t fancy but quite big enough to load lots of things. We can also sit or lay down catching rays on top of the boat.

We then started our journey. The waves were fine. I was told that the better the waves the sooner we will reach our destination. Our plan was to arrive at Sebesi Island for an hour and a half boat ride, continue snorkelling and diving then stay one night and head off to the Krakatau for exploration the next day for another half an hour boat ride from there. So the total amount of time is 3 hours towards Krakatau. I stood on top of the boat with the others. The wind passing by, making my long hair dancing wild until I have to tame it and tie it as my favourite bun. I was hoping the black clouds would run away so that the sun could play with me. The sea was pretty but the sun light was not enough to reflect the sea’s true colour. I tried to take some pictures of the scenery but nothing attractive caught my sight yet. So, I sat down with my friends eating banana and peanuts. The sight was showing us that it was raining somewhere in Lampung. Everyone was focus on each things when suddenly there was a huge bang of thunder from far away that came from the right side of the boat. The others felt like looking for shelter and be safe just in case the storm heads by. So, they ran down the stairs inside the boat, while I chose to stay on the top.
Sitting down, I examined the sky. There was a funny feeling about it. It felt like the sky wanted to pour heavily but certainly there was something holding it back. Something that had fought it; helping the humans on the boat having their safe voyage towards the Krakatau. I noticed the scene. It was shown by the bright sun precisely right on top of our boat, shining strongly whilst it’s surrounding is covered by black clouds. So, that circle of blessed burning light has at least scared the black clouds that block its ray of light. It was a special moment for me to watch it or for any other one who had notice its moment.
After passing by several unoccupied small islands shaped like hills but very dense with green forest, we finally met Sebesi Island. Happy that the travel was smooth, waves were alright, the sky was brighter here as we arrived around 2.30pm at the Tejang Sebesi Harbour. Sebesi Island is inhabited and it’s the nearest and largest island to Krakatau. We brought our bags to the homestay and had our late lunch at a local friend’s house. I was excited to explore the place before the sunsets. So, I went back to the port where we arrived earlier and saw the locals searching for something diligently by the beach. Studying it from far away, I couldn’t understand what they were looking for. They seem to have been doing it for not just the first time in their lives. I came down to the sand beside the harbour’s wooden bridge. The seawater has receded until around 20 meters away. There were traditional wooden boats owned by the locals that were stranded by the seawater; lying unmoved; knowing that the seawater would rise to meet them again, they took that chance to rest before their next adventure. I walk barefooted passing by the boats, feeling the damp sand squished under my two feet leaving trail of footsteps. What a nice feeling to feel the earth under your feet. Approaching the locals, I begin to feel walking on some fresh seaweed. I stopped for a while scanning the panorama behind my back, there stands firmly a beautiful active mountain also named Sebesi and from where I stood, I could see green natural trees growing healthily around the coastline. I continued walking until I approached a young mother with her child and other children playing around half playing-half helping with the search. She didn’t bother to look when I came because she was focused on searching what’s underneath the sands. I asked, “Sedang cari apa?” – “What are you looking for?” She answers back, “Nyari kerang.” – “Looking for shells.” Still curious, I asked again; “Kerang apa?” – “What kind of shells?”. She answers, “Ini.” – “This one.”; while taking it out from a plastic bag. “Aaaaaahh…” I said out loud. So, she was looking for sea scallops with a big tool hitting the sand while walking around benting over. I let her continue the search. I walked carefully while looking at the other locals busy doing the same. I approached an old man happily looking for sea scallops and spoke to him. “Sedang cari kerang ya Pa?” – “You must be looking for shells right?”. He answered yes. He was squatting holding a large knife and a fishnet not far behind his back. I squatted next to him wanting to see how he does it. I don’t understand why they have to hit the sand with a tool to look for shells. I asked again. “Kenapa harus dipukul-pukul Pa?” – “Why do you have to hit it?”, he continues answering my question “Supaya kerasa kerangnya jadi harus dipukul-pukul. Kalau terasa ada permukaan keras, baru dikeluarkan.” – “To feel the shells, that’s why you have to hit it. Once you feel a hard surface, then you take it out.” It makes sense for me now. He somehow thrust his big knife to the sand as if splitting the ground into two in order to feel the hard surface of the shells. I asked what type of shells he has gathered and then he showed me from his fishnet saying “Kerang Kampak dan kerang biasa” – “Axe shell and the regular shells”. So, there were two types of sea scallops that were mostly found within the place. I asked him what he does after he collected it. He says that “Ini biasanya buat dimakan. Dimakan mentah-mentah juga enak.” – “Normally it’s for eating. Also, eating it raw, is delicious”. He opened the black axe shaped shell into two. We could see its orange muscles and meat freshly. I said, “yummy” instantly looking at the meat like fresh oyster. Mau coba?” – “Do you want to try?” he asked spirit fully. And I said “Mau Pa!” – “Yes, I would like to.” He cleaned the scallop for me and threw away some parts of it using he’s hands and a big knife. After that, he dips the fresh scallop into a small puddle of sea water to wash away some natural dirt, and then gave it to me. I took it and examined it shortly with my right hand, and within seconds I gulped it savouring the fresh sea scallop straight from the Sea of Sebesi Island inside my mouth. Yum! I asked for the other kind of the sea scallop. I guessed it would have the same taste and meat but I thought I should try it also so I wouldn’t be curious thinking about it. He opened the rather small shape of the sea scallop; cleaned it and wash it for me. I ate it straight away and it does taste the same. Thanking the old man and saying goodbye to him, the clock says around 4pm. Me, Feri and Muhdi went straight to the boat meeting our friends there to continue our exploration. Pandu, Arief and Andy guided us to see the underwater during the sunsets. To me, it felt like – ‘Don’t waste time if you want to enjoy life, do it now while you can!’ and I secretly smiled to myself. They are nature lovers of Lampung who are proud with their nature and that they would love to explore, study and keep their environment protected for everyone’s travelling enjoyments. Their Lampung adventures and surveys are priceless for me because they are willing to share it to us. Pandu and Andy sat in front of the boat, seriously discussing together about the underwater spots to which they will take us. Once in a while, they pointed to some places while directing and coordinating with the others. By a short travelling around +/-30 metres away from the harbour, we arrived to a spot named Legoon Sawo.
Pandu told us that we will taste the sea here first by snorkelling around. Then I said to myself, “Ah, this is the time to be acquainted with the sea around the Sunda Strait”. So, I switched my clothes to diving suit as I cannot wait to have a dip in the sea although the weather was not too bright. The sun is on its way touching the horizontal line and its position now is near the mountain. The waves were alright and the colour of the sea was dark green. Due to the adventurous feeling that I have, I wore my fins and mask and jumped out to the sea joining the others who have felt it first.
The seawater was a bit cold. I could see the healthy corals, fishes and seaweeds within the visibility of 4-5meters. Kicking my fins around the snorkelling spot with my friends, we saw a huge coral standing firmly under the sea. I circled around it and skin dived a couple of times admiring it. Satisfied with it, I snorkelled around again and had fun enjoying the seawater with the others. Realising the time already hits around 5pm, we scrambled to the boat. I took my fins off under the water while holding on to the boat’s stair with one hand.
After everyone is on board, Pandu and Andy took us to a dive spot. They said that the location isn’t far from the Legoon Sawo. They coordinated again with the boat crews. I sat on top of the boat enjoying the environment. When the boat had stopped, Pandu said to us that we have arrived at Pulau Umang – Umang Island. He and Andy went into the sea first to check out the current. So, we waited at the boat hoping that the area is fine for us to dive. Andy and Pandu snorkel to check the water movement condition. Then after a minute or so, they shouted out that the current is too strong. I felt a bit heavy in the chest by hearing that, Pandu and Andy then came up to the boat. Pandu said that, “The current is strong because the high tide started to come in; it is such a pity for us that we couldn’t dive there at the moment.

The place is beautiful. We usually can see sharks and at the corner east side of the island there is Batu Ular – Snake Stone which was named by the locals. Maybe the locals named it because there are a lot of snakes and they often see it. The sea snakes are pretty”. “Oh, well. What to do.” I said to myself. Still have time; Pandu directed the boat to another dive spot named Cemara Satu. The destination is only around 100 metres away from Tejang Sebesi harbour and the boat ride wasn’t that far either; we were all psyched about diving that we couldn’t wait. It only took us a couple of minutes until we arrived at the location. I felt happy that we are still trying to dive although Pandu and Andy were a little bit unhappy about the timing because the high tide makes the visibility muddy. Me, Muhdi and Feri are definitely curious about having a look and wanting to document the underwater. So, Pandu gave us a short brief about it. He said that Cemara Satu is above sea level; the current is calm but not during the start of the high and low tides that will cause waves at certain times. So, the clear visibility could be seen anytime but not during that event and the underwater composition is a slope. After we heard the short briefing from Pandu, we geared up quickly with our diving equipments.
I jumped into the sea. It was around 5.30pm when we decided to deflate our BCD’s as we slowly descended. The visibility was less than 2 metres and it’s definitely murky. “Wow” I said, “It’s dark and it’s muddy” while I was looking around. I waited for all of us to stick together. So, Pandu was my buddy, and then there’s Muhdi, Feri, Arief and Andy. Andy showed us the way with the help of Pandu. As I thought we were already sticking together; me, Pandu and Andy – well, that’s who I can see during that time, we started to dive. This is a little bit hard I said. I keep on looking my buddy and Andy all the time to avoid disorientation. If I have looked away just a few seconds, I could get lost. The visibility was just murky, dark green colour; that I would not know from which direction that we came because it all looks the same in this kind of condition! Afraid that I would get lost, I focused on keeping my eyes at Andy’s fins colour. Well, that was the only way I thought.
I had realised that I couldn’t see Feri, Muhdi and Arief. I signalled Pandu and we had waited. But there were no signs of them coming. So, we guessed that they have ascended already because of the visibility. In certain times, we stopped at some point and Andy or Pandu pointed into something interesting for me to see; whether it was a lion fish, corals or stone murai fishes. To be honest, along the dive, I just couldn’t see a thing! Even if they have pointed an object, I just had to squeeze my eyelids to sharpen my vision and saw a vague object. Besides, the murky visibility kept me thinking on wild imaginations that I would encounter a creepy or a wild sea creature shockingly in front of my face. But, I know I was thinking a little too much. So, I cleared my mind as much as I can, trying to enjoy this diving experience. And, please! Focus on Andy’s Fins please. And not long after, I saw Feri coming by holding a camera on his hand. It seems that he has been documenting some interesting things along the way that we haven’t seen him. Well, I had a feeling that the scene was pretty if the weather and timing was just right. After we felt we had enough exploring Cemara Satu and that it felt to me that it was a rather quick dive; we started to ascend slowly while holding our hand over our heads to avoid running over anything. We inflated the BCD once we reached the surface – until we felt the BCD is capable to float us on the sea. I looked at my diving watch to see how surprising that we reached the surface around 6.45pm for a diving condition like that. Time just slips away so fast. Unbelievable! It was already turning dark outside. The last ray of orange reddish colour of sunlight illuminates our surrounding. We took of our mask and regulator and started laughing. It was a laugh of joy and relief. The waves had already entered while we were talking to each other about our recent dive. We faced backwards from the waves. So, that when they pushed us, we wouldn’t have water splashed into our faces that much. Slowly, we pushed ourselves towards the boat. I was enjoying the waves and the feeling of after dive. It was around 8 metres away from our exit spot. I could see our friends are on top of the boat enjoying the view and also has been waiting for us. And I am sure that Arief and Muhdi are there too. As usual, I took of my weight belt and gave it to the boat crew then my BCD and fins. I climbed the stairs and went directly towards on top of the boat. I saw Arief and Muhdi there and talked to them. They have quitted earlier because the underwater sight was too murky and we had lost each other at the first place. And then, I continued talking to Pa Hijau – Mr. Green our local friend who owns the Hotel Hijau in Bandar Lampung who also joined the trip. He didn’t join the dive but he had a good time enjoying the view while waiting for us on top of the boat and he said that they were a bit worried waiting for us diving due to the high tide that came earlier which causes the waves. And actually surprised when he saw us surfaced laughing enjoying the waves while approaching the boat. Oh well, I said to him that the frequency of us adventuring probably had made us get used with the waves. And, to my surprise from this very day I knew from Pandu that when the weather is rather sunny at Cemara Satu, sometimes the locals would see crocodiles warming up their bodies by the coastline. Its habitat is somewhere around Cemara Satu not far from where we dived because behind it is a lagoon area. He doesn’t know what type of crocodile it is yet and in what time they would emerge. This made me bring back those visions of diving in Cemara Satu and gave me shivers thinking about the crocodile’s habitat. Well, we went back to Sebesi Island for dinner and sleep. Tomorrow is the day to feel the Krakatau’s experience before we had back to Bandar Lampung. While having my dinner, I felt the wind blows rather strong yet it felt like it wanted to give us greetings. The air became cool. I prayed that we are safe in the island for tonight and for our journey tomorrow until we get back.
I woke up the next morning around 5 am. We had to leave Sebesi Island by 5.30 am for Krakatau. I had waked up I think around 3am in the morning knowing there was a storm. I felt grateful that the storm had stopped. Hopefully it won’t come again yet until we are finished with the exploration. We all packed and got ready walking towards the boat. It is another hour and a half boat ride to reach the Krakatau. We are all feeling the enthusiasm of it although it was a misty morning. The sun was nowhere to be seen. I guess it was the after effect from the storm last night. The sight view is all grey. I breathed the fresh wind from the boat moving forward towards our destination. I felt being been careful on our current journey because we are entering one of the major historical places that happen in Indonesia. As we move smoothly, I try to keep my heart and mind as positive and humble as could be. I felt that no human being can beat the beauty and greatness of nature. We are just a tiny drop of God’s essence living with a big soul in the mission of maintaining the earth’s nature. It makes me wouldn’t dare to harm or do anything that shows arrogant along the way because it’s useless according to the nature’s Creator. I sat on top of the boat at the front side waiting for the Krakatau’s view.
Then finally, I could see the Krakatau’s view from far away. It was still a small sight. I begin to feel happier and impatient to see it from close distance. Still the environment is in the misty look and the sun from the left side of the boat had started to show itself of orange colour light. Nearer and nearer we had approached Krakatau. I wouldn’t want to miss a single thing. I started documented it here and there. I saw the Panjang Island at the left side, Anak Krakatau in the middle, Sertung Island at the right side and Rakata at the very far in front of us. Our boat peacefully entered the site of the majestic place. We entered through the passage of Panjang Island and Anak Krakatau. Panjang Island was completely covered by healthy green trees and plants as far as my eyes can see and although the Anak Krakatau looks small for a volcanic mountain, its power is as huge as its historic mother. Everyone was taking pictures of it. As we get a better view now of the Anak Krakatau, we could see white gas coming out from the tip. The active volcano is mostly covered with black sand and underneath of it I could see a healthy small green forest. Admiring it, seeing just this close lifts my heart. I felt grateful.
Our plan in Krakatau today is to feel the underwater then climb the Anak Krakatau. So, the boat passed Anak Krakatau and Panjang Island and anchored at Rakata Island. The Rakata Island is beautiful. It is also covered with thick green healthy trees and some red colour trees here and there. But there isn’t a space of land to be seen to step on. The colour of the seawater around it is dark green. Ooooh, how I had an amazing feeling to try the water of Krakatau. “Finally!” I said in my heart; “Krakatau!” I continued again, “This is it! I am going to dive here. Oh, wow!” Sometimes, a thought would emerge imagining a sea of dead people around here during the eruption. And sometimes I would imagine the Anak Krakatau erupted during our dive. Phew, that was a hard one. I had to push that one away. Or I would imagine finding some relic under the sea. Anyways, Pandu started to give us brief information. The name of the dive spot is Legoon Cabe. The underwater scenery would be wall reef and usually the current in Lampung especially at the wall area tends to pull deeper or downwards. So, he told us that we mustn’t go down more than 15 metres because they haven’t surveyed the area yet and it is too dark to go. The bottom composition would be black sand and stones.
We quickly changed into diving suits and helped each other gearing up. Then not long after, everyone was already enjoying the seawater happily. I could feel their pride and natural feeling projecting from within them. Before my fins touch the fresh natural seawater of Krakatau, I prepared myself for the sensation. I hold my breath for a little bit and here we go! My body splashes the seawater. “Woooooooooh!” I shouted happily. The cold water seeps into my diving suit and penetrates to my skin. “It’s perfect!” I said to myself. I cannot believe myself that I am at the Krakatau’s sea. After all the waiting and anxieties, it’s definitly worth it. I felt free and natural and one with the nature of Krakatau. Some did snorkelling while me, Andy, Muhdi, Pandu, Feri and Arief goes for diving. So, Andy was our dive guide. After we all had gathered, we started to descend at 8.44 am.
I could see directly through my mask, the corals that had lived years grew very strong, healthy and thick. The corals are compacted; living peacefully being unharmed by humans but let to be admired. Many colourful types and schooling of fishes swam playful and freely like their habitat is the only peace in the world. I could see joy in them. Moving forward and getting deeper, the panoramic site was wall reef. It was rather dark with the visibility of 3 – 4 metres and a little bit murky. The scene was mostly of black sands and stones. Probably because we felt peacefully down there even though the visibility wasn’t that great, we passed the diving restriction that Pandu has told. We reached until 17 metres and that’s when Andy and Pandu signalled us a hand to go above again. The diving scenery was alright. The scenery was lovely in less than 15 metres because you would see the corals and other biota living healthily around that limit. Since me, Feri and Muhdi felt that we had enough documentation and because it was rather dark and murky we signalled each other for exiting the water. We came back to the route where we first came. Before I ascend, I have another quick look around me. The seawater was not that clear and across the wall reef, it was just deep sea. After I have reached the surface, we headed to our boat. We only had a quick dive since the attractive spot was less than 15 metres and that there is not much to see at the wall reef plus it was murky. I was attracted to do some snorkelling because the underwater biota at this level is very healthy, colourful, fresh, and pure natural beauty. Besides, I have to satisfy myself here. I just cannot stop and do nothing while I am here. So, I just took of my weight belt and BCD then gave it to the boat crew from the water. The others are still enjoying free diving and snorkelling even swimming around circling the boat. When, I felt the snorkelling was enough, I came on top of the boat. I saw Pa Hijau showing positive energy by having the spirit to jump off the boat from up here. The joys of Krakatau are projecting from our soul. He eventually jumped twice and made different funny poses while someone took a picture of it and the others followed. We all laughed with joy seeing it. It makes me move my feet towards their spot and want to do a somersault jump because I never done that in my life, either from a boat or a cliff. Well, I tried normal jumps couple of times like at the Bidadari Waterfall in East Kalimantan or jumping at a cliff somewhere in Gigit Waterfall’s in Bali or even the Jembatan Cinta – The Love Bridge at Pulau Tidung in Jakarta where I smacked one of my thighs. And oh! Even at the broken harbour bridge in Jailolo at West Halmahera. Anyways, I kept my wild urge to jump flipside. So, I did the normal jump instead because I do not want to miss the Krakatau’s moment. ‘Splash!’ We celebrate the water again before we leave for Anak Krakatau.
The plan still needs to run. Pandu said that it’s better for us to be at Anak Krakatau by 10am for climbing. I definitely cannot wait to experience the climb. The sun was showing its best during that morning. I felt very grateful that our diving was smooth and I hope for the best for our climb soon. While our boat sails, I asked Pandu how long does it take for us to climb. He answered around an hour or an hour and a half depends on our walking speed. “Oh! Dekat juga ya”. – “Oh! That’s near” I responded. Then he continues, “Ya, dan kita bisa naik gunung pakai diving suit aja” – “Yes, and we can climb the mountain wearing diving suit”. At a split second, I responded to that state as a normal idea but then within a few seconds afterwards I realised that wearing it for an hour climbing will make me melt like an ice cream in a dessert. I was sceptical. “Beneran naik pakai diving suit? Kitakan bisa ganti.” – “Are you sure we are going to use the diving suit? We can change.” I asked spontaneously then he answered me back that sounded like a small challenge, “Belum pernah kan, naik gunung pakai diving suit.” – “You haven’t tried it before right, climbing a mountain with a diving suit.” I answered, “Enggak, belum pernah.” – “No, not yet”. He adds up, “Tenang aja, jalannya landai kok dan nggak susah.” – “Take it easy, the path is a slope and it’s not hard.” Well, I kind of believed in him. Besides, I am going to try that crazy idea. I haven’t climb in a dive suit before and it’s worth trying it. Going for an adventure is like trying many techniques and methods to add on your adventure experiences. So, you would have stocks of knowledge and better preferences to share.

As the boat sails away, my feelings were in wonderment. I thought of the tragedy inside my head couple of times and throw it away instantly because I couldn’t hold the thought of the fiery eruption in 1883. As peaceful as it sails, I’m not sure what the Anak Krakatau’s doing underneath us during the presence time.

The atmosphere was containing mystical, peace, strength and beauty. When the Anak Krakatau appeared closer in vision; I thought about us getting up there. It does look short in height, black sand all around the summit and little forest underneath around the mountain’s foot area. I am not sure until where we are aloud to climb since the active white coloured gas steams rising out from its crater. I prayed that it wouldn’t explode during our climb. Finally, the boat anchored.

As humble as I can be, I wanted to make a good impression with the Anak Krakatau. ‘Please, be good to us’ I said by heart. I cleared my heart and thought of goodness. Forgetting about the dive suit situation. I climbed down the boat with the others. While the others headed towards the small hut at the island, I walked myself out from the track. I walked a little bit to the left side of the island. I touched the ground with my right hand. The sand so perfect in deep black colour, so nutured and healthy. I had a moment of silence and focused on Anak Krakatau. Through the touch of my hand, I build a contact and spoke from my heart that, ” I came here to enjoy and appreciate your beautiness. The Almighty God’s Creation.’ And then I put a smile that shines from my heart. After that, I joined my friends. Quite surprisingly, the island has nice breezy wind, the weather was pleasant, it was that hot because of the conservation of trees and plants at the foot mountain and where we hide in the shadows of the trees. Aaah, fresh air.

Then Pandu said to me, “Sebentar saja kok naiknya.” – “It will only take us a shortwhile to climb” and I said “Okay.” directly without hesitation. We started our climbing, but before that there were a brief history about the Krakatau and read it quickly on the board. I cannot wait to see the scenery from the top. So, we started walking. While walking, I realised that we are passing through the forest that I saw from far away. It was green and healthy, also it’s like entering a secret garden pathway. We passed through a log that naturally blocked our way. We took some turns and the pathway begins to slope upwards. Slowly, I felt my two thighs begin to hurt as we go up. As we passed through the end of the forest, where the last green trees and plants grew, I could felt the burning sun that goes directly to my skin. Well, me and my dive suit and booties. Perfect! Some others are wearing the same too. Going up and up, I could see some huge holes, that were seem to be caused by the eruption, sending big rocks that flew from the crater. There are also brown coloured rocks all around the place too. I stopped for a couple of seconds once in a while to regain my energy and release my thigh pains and continued walking again. Finally at the top! Well, Pandu was right it took us more or less for an hour to climb. Now, I could see clearly the Panjang Island right infront of me, my back facing the crater; Rakata Island at my far right and Sertung Island at my back but I couldn’t see it because the view was blocked by the Anak Krakatau’s Crater. The two Island’s that I saw was fully green and the seawater around it were very calm. A breeze swooshed our presence. Nice and lovely under the hot sun. Now, looking at the Anak Krakatau’s Crater, steamy white gas came out from it like a boiling hot water. But the crater was a little bit higher from where we stood. There was no way we could climb or get close to it. This is as far as we can go. I walked at the far right towards the Rakata Island where we dived earlier. Walking carefully on the healthy smashed rocks, my two feet took me quite to the edge. It wasn’t a far walk. The scenery was the same as where I stood before. So, I got back to the middle again. Very proud and happy that I have seen myself the Krakatau smoothly. I took some last documentations before I walk back down to the boat and head back for Lampung land. I said thank you as much as I can deep inside my heart while I skip down the Anak Krakatau.

15???????????????????????????????

 

 

 

Fiona Callaghan
Model, TV Presenter, Actress, Ambassador, Adventure Blogger, Adventurer, PLAN+

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

%d bloggers like this: