More threats and bother
Labuanbajo Travel Blog› entry 197 of 658 › view all entries
People i met here who contributed to, and improved my trip: Julia (Russia), Markus (Finland)
I was quite surprised that there were no touts at the ferry terminal offering taxis or hotel rooms, so we walked off up the street into the town, which was only a few hundred metres away. An Italian couple joined us and together we went into the first hotel that we came to. Unfortunately this was fully booked, so we continued along the road and within 50 metres we came to another hotel. There were no lights on at this one and no receptionist, so once more we carried on. The next 3 hotels were all the same, with no receptionist and all the lights were switched off around the building. Pulling out our lousy planet, we found that there was one guesthouse called Chez Felix, that was up a steep hill around 500 metres away, so onwards and upwards we traipsed. Again, there was little sign of life upon arrival, but eventually a guy came out, who went off to get a woman, who then sold us the room. It was now almost 4.30am so within seconds of entering the room, we were fast asleep.
Thunderous drilling sounds woke us up around 7am and still half asleep i began to curse our luck that their must be roadworks or something going on outside the hotel, which we had evidently overlooked the previous night. I was therefore shocked that when i opened the door to see what was going on, i was met by 3 guys with a pneumatic drill, who were digging a hole literally on our door step. I went to find the woman who sold us the room and told her that it was crazy that this was happening, when she knew that we had arrived late and clearly 7am was unacceptable to be doing this kind of thing. Rather than offering to let us move room (although it would have been loud whichever room we were in) or telling me she would sort it out, she just shrugged her shoulders and continued hanging her washing out. I went back to the room and lay down, but after another 10 minutes, recognising it was impossible to sleep, i went back out to tell them to stop the drilling. Once again the woman just fobbed me off and wouldn't do anything, so i told her that if that was her attitude then we were leaving. We grabbed our bags, which we'd never even opened and walked out.
50 metres from the hotel, one of the guys who had been drilling pulled up on a motorbike, asking why we were leaving and what the problem was. I explained that i had twice asked for the drilling to stop and as we were exhausted and couldn't sleep and the lady was unwilling to do anything at all, we would find a hotel that didn't treat its guests like utter crap, and one in which it was possible to get some sleep. The guy then said that we should have asked him as he was the manager and that the woman was only his sister. I asked him how we should know he was the manager, and anyway, he had seen me come out of the room and complain twice, so he knew what was happening and had no common sense in the first place, to be drilling that early in the morning outside a guests room. He then said that we couldn't just leave, but again i explained that i had asked twice for it to stop and said i was leaving if it didn't, and still they had continued. I said i would pay him something for the 3 hours that we were there, but that was it. He then said how i was a terrible person (many swear words) and how he didn't want or need my money (brandishing $5 as though this made him rich or something), but instead he was going to tell all the hotels in town not to let us stay and therefore drive us out of there! He raced off on his motorbike into the town and when we made it down the hill, he drove back past us telling us there was now nowhere to stay.
Arriving into the town, we found a restaurant and sat there and ate some breakfast, but 5 minutes later the guy turned up again to hassle us. There was an English guy called Rob in the restaurant who spoke Bahasa and after finding out what was going on, he started arguing with the guy saying that it was stupid to be drilling, that they wouldn't stop when asked etc etc. The guy was going a bit crazy, so at this Rob basically shouted him out of the restaurant saying he was a disgrace. The bloke (presumably Felix) was supposedly known around town for pulling stunts like this, but as a result, the restaurant said they no longer had any rooms available in their attached hotel. Julia then set off alone to look for a room, so as if they had been told about 2 people, they wouldn't piece it together if there was only 1 girl on her own. She managed to find one in the end, but it seemed possible that Felix really had been to each hotel as when they saw 2 people turn up with bags, the manager at first seemed a bit annoyed. I didn't care anymore to be honest and was relieved just to be able to put my head on a pillow and go to sleep.
We left our room in the early afternoon and bumped into Markus, so went off for some lunch with him. After this, our main objective was to book a tour to see the Komodo Dragons and after a few hours of asking around, we eventually decided to go with our own hotel. The town itself was only small, so there wasn't too much to do after this, so the 3 of us played some poker and chilled out in the Gardena restaurant for the rest of the day.