It's after dinner and Rasta walks with me along Jalan Raya Kuta. The little bracelet girls are chasing each other on the road and come running my direction as soon as they see me. They offer me a fruit that looks like Lansones but tastes like Rambutan. We stroll along the dusty road, stopping every time we bump into familiar faces. They drop me off at Lombok Barrel, say goodbye and continue to work throughout the night.
And I'm here sitting on a makeshift wooden bench that's about to collapse. The night is young and the local surfer boys are sitting around the bonfire playing some acoustic tunes. Ozy drumming calmly on his bongos, Aris strumming his guitar, serenading us with his sweet raspy voice. They speak to me in what seemed like a mix of Bahasa Indonesian, Sasak and broken English with a heavy Australian accent and strangely I understand. In between songs, they plan to surf a secret spot tomorrow and I'm invited. Don't tell the Spanish guys, they say.
We pass around some local rice wine before all the bules arrive and it's delicious. I look up at this humongous tree almost stripped bare of its' leaves, exposing the crescent moon and the night sky full of stars. They're just as bright as I remember them to be. None of my friends are here yet I never feel alone. I have nothing but a few thousand rupiahs left in my back pocket, no house, no keys. But I'm here, the glow of the fire warming my face. My mind is not a million miles away, wishing I was someplace else. I have to see Southeast Asia, I keep reminding myself. But I'm right where I want to be and its a little harder for me to leave.