Imagine a flat, green island ringed by white sand beaches with views of blue mountains across the water. A warm, clear sea laps quietly at the sand, its color ever changing from aquamarine to deep turquoise with the light. Beneath the waters lay outcrops of sea grass waving gently in the shallows, and mounding stoney corals swarming with vividly colored fish. Narrow walking paths criss-cross the island and intersect with a circular one that outlines the circumference and takes a mere 90 minutes to walk at a leisurely pace. Most everyone walks. The only ‘vehicles’ are carts painted bright blue and pulled by small horses.  DSC02301There are no police on the island and yet virtually no crime. If anything is reported stolen, boat transport off the island is stopped until the item is found. Everyone is friendly and appears happy. Restaurants serve piles of steaming noodles topped with a fried egg and large glasses of fresh juice to SCUBA diving tourists who lean back in their chairs and dig their feet into the sand.

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The east shore bustles with dive shops, hotels and oceanfront restaurants with views of Lombok. The quest west shore looks towards Gili Meno, Gili T and Bali, overlapping silhouettes of mountains rising out of the ocean. A few warungs sell cold drinks and provide palapas to watch the sunset. Each evening we exchange a couple thousand Rupiah for a lemon water and a large Bingtang wrapped in a giant coozy, and we sit on our log and watch the sun settle for the night. The melodious voices of people praying at the mosque carries on the wind

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