11-27: Misool

I woke up Saturday morning with an annoying inflammation in my left ear. It wasn’t an infection because the outer-ear didn’t hurt, but clearing my ears caused pain. And since I knew the boat would be gone all morning on a two-tank dive today and planned to see the manta rays on Magic Mountain tomorrow, I thought it best to take a day off from diving and keep my head dry so I could be 100% for the mantas. It was a great decision, since I spent the day lounging all by myself, reading, and occasionally wading into the water from our porch.

 The blue boat, leaving without me

My view. All day.

The boat coming back from diving

My Kindle and a sunset


Later that evening we watched a presentation by Andy, one of the owners, who was the master-mind behind Misool Eco-Resort. The presentation showed the various stages of building the resort, collecting wood and eventually building the dive shop, followed by the various huts. I might have mentioned this already but it’s definitely worth repeating: this entire resort was built with found wood. They’d travel from one island to another, collecting logs and driftwood and using that as building materials. Not a single tree was cut down. This will never cease to impress me. Here again is the link to Misool’s eco-mission – it’s worth the read.

Andy and his eco-friendly lodge

The group, listening to Andy’s presentation

Andy also explained how – as part of their lease from the village – they negotiated a 468 square mile “no take zone” around the island. Meaning, there could be no fishing in that zone so the marine life could be preserved for diving. While this was accepted by the people on Misool the trouble was the fishermen from other parts of Indonesia. Shark finning and long-line fishing was still happening in the area so Andy and the team put together a patrol boat to (kindly) explain to the fishermen that they were in a no-take zone. This was all – and still is – funded by the resort and its investors.

No Take Zone
In addition to the oceanic preservation, the resort also works with the local communities and has introduced a small library in the school since the kids don’t actually have books to read. The pictures of this library and the kids’ wonderment of books are inspiring.

(not my pic, but these are kids reading the books)
Read more about it here. Makes you want to put libraries in every school here.