Air conditioning isn't always a blessing. Kim caught a cold from the AC in our room in Singapore. It was a serious one with the lot: headache, sour throat, earache, a stuffy nose and even fever. Unfortunately taking a plane isn't ideal then. A good week later he finally got rid of it.
And then we arrived on Flores. The idea was to tour around on a scooter like we did on Bali and Lombok. We had to find storage space to leave our big backpacks behind. Usually this is not a big deal as hotels have these facilities. Our hotel couldn't store it for a long time as their storage space was too small. Because Flores isn't that touristy yet, there are not many facilities provided. When having a chat with a European lady who just opened her business there, she offered to store the bags in her office. Awesome, and we very happy that we could leave the next day. It was even our second time we had problems storing our luggage. When going to Singapore, we assumed we could leave our bags at the hotel. They only offered storage for transit time, but not for long term. Result, we had to find storage at the airport. We did find it but it wasn't cheap. Our luggage was already a game breaker for another flight as we had to pay €180 to check-in our bags.
Many rumors say that the Indonesian government has more interest in Java and Bali and forgets the other islands. A visible example is the road condition on Flores. We experienced it first hand when driving from Riung to Maumere. You could hardly call it a road, so many potholes and loose rocks. It even took us one hour to cover 14 kilometers and we built up callus on our bums. The nickname FBI, Flores Bumpy Island, is pretty accurate. Luckily the road got better again and we could speed up our pace.
We were lucky that after hundreds of kilometers we didn't have any major problems but it was inevitable. When driving to a view point in Maumere, we ran a flat tire. With a little help from locals we made it to a repair shop. The inner tube was seriously burst and had to be replaced. Thirty minutes later all was fine. No more bad luck we thought, but little did we know more was to come. When leaving Ende 6 days later, Kim felt that the bike had less grip. And of course, the tire got punctured again. Luckily we didn't have to wait too long as a truck stopped on which we could load the bike, of course in exchange for money. He dropped us at the next village where all was repaired after half an hour. Every backpacker knows that it's not all cakes and ale.