Indonesia has a certain magic about it. With islands of untold beauty and a myriad of cultures that just draw you in, its pretty easy to fall in love with this country. So when the Ministry of Tourism invited me to come film, I was stoked beyond all belief.
Standing at the peak, with the wind almost blowing me over, I realized that even the most beautiful of destinations have their rough side. To summit this island, you have to climb more than 300-meters of vertical, razor-sharp rocks through dense, sweaty jungle. But the moment you peak out, the moment you see thousands of islands flittered along the coast, that is the moment you know it’s worth it.
From the sands of Raja Ampat, we headed to Flores. Each day traveling great distances, I eventually found myself climbing in the dark to the summit of Kelimutu. These lakes are known as The Spirits and the colors are constantly changing from the deepest of reds to crystal blues and even a black as deep as space. The locals believe that the spirits of their ancestors live within, each lake holding a different generation of souls. Standing on the edge of the crater rim, I felt like I was flirting with death.
Flash forward to sitting less than a meter in front of a drooling Komodo dragon on the island of Rincha, its eyes locked on mine.
I had followed this creature through the savanna and the forest to this point. Slowly, I dropped to my knees, level with its claws. My primordial beast raging inside, I plucked the courage and held my ground, looking deep into his eyes, holding his gaze for what felt like centuries.
The next day, my gaze locked with the eyes of children as they playfully chased me through villages into the jungle, then diving head first in the sea. Each smile induced ripples of laughter with happiness and stoke so pure and genuine.
Looking back on the project, I hope to show you a glimpse of the beauty I found in Indonesia and, who knows, maybe inspire you to go find it too.
I'll wait to hear your stories of Finding Indo for yourself.
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