(You might want a map for this one.)
So, am in East Timor, the eastern half of the island of Timor, and one of the world’s newer countries. I’m here for a few days, partly for historic reasons, and partly because Indonesia’s visa policy is ‘complex’; I can get a visa on arrival to Indonesia if I fly in, but not if I go overland from East Timor. So my plan was to get a visa from the embassy, which is conveniently very close to the hostel I’m in.
The visa takes three working days to process, as long as you get the application in before midday. All well and good; get the app in tomorrow and I’ll have the visa on Monday.
Tomorrow’s a holiday in East Timor. Corpus Christi. The embassy is closed.
So this means that even if I get all the admin and paperwork in to them by midday on Friday, the chances are I’d get the visa on Tuesday at the earliest. However it being a holiday and Ramadan coming soon means there’s likely to be a lot of applications on Friday so I might not even get the visa until Wednesday.
The buses to Kupang, in Indonesian West Timor, take 12 hours and don’t seem to go overnight; this means I wouldn’t be in Kupang until potentially Thursday evening.
Dili’s an all-right place, but I’m not sure it deserves 7 days…
But what’s the alternative? Dili’s an expensive place to get in/out of by plane; it’s also not a destination served by many routes. The cheapest seems to be to fly to Bali – a place I was trying to avoid – and then head back East from there by bus/ferry, or plane (Indonesian domestic flights are very cheap).
My aim, either way, is to get to the island of Sumbawa, which is sort of halfway between Timor and Bali.
Well, I’ll sleep on it. It may well depend how well I sleep tonight, in a dorm room with a fan but no aircon. It is oppressively hot here …