Where Fish Outnumber Phones
Author: Gisela Williams
Souce: The New York Times
May 25, 2012
"IT was an hour before sunset on the remote Indonesian archipelago of Karimunjawa, a scattering of 27 tiny islands in the Java Sea, south of Borneo. My husband, Carsten, two children and I were on a turquoise outrigger canoe, paddling along the shoreline of the island of Menyawakan, which was lined with clusters of mangroves. Looking down into the clear, shallow water, we spotted a black sea cucumber that wound its sinuous way along the sand like a snake.
Gliding toward a bouquet of sea anemones, Carsten spotted three small clown fish darting playfully among the waving fingers of the anemones. “Nemo!” shouted my 4-year-old, Cosima, awe-struck. For at least five minutes we all watched, mesmerized, as my husband tickled the biggest of the three. It stood its ground as the others hid behind it. As the sun went down in glorious shades of pink and red, and Carsten continued to cavort with a creature that seemed more cartoon than fish, it felt as if we had crossed over to another world.
This sort of dreamlike encounter happened more than once during our five days in September exploring Karimunjawa, an off-the-map spot with a population of about 10,000, many of whom still make a living from fishing and cultivating seaweed. For years an in-the-know destination for snorkeling and scuba-diving, the islands have recently begun to attract more and more travelers looking for an escape from the endless white noise of modern communication."
To read the full text of the article, click here.