birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

Bima, Sumbawa

I don’t remember Bima that well, but for reasons I don’t totally understand myself I remember it very fondly. There is nothing particularly special about it, which may have been part of its charm. Just a regular town, with regular folks, nothing particularly spectacular. The streets were dusty and it was very quiet most of the time, although the call to prayer was dependably loud, even at the very start of the day.

We only ended up there because we were on our way from Lombok to Komodo and had decided to take an overland bus. The bus trip was awful which could be why I was so happy in Bima, but I think it was also that I’ve always liked places that are centers of productive activity much more than places that were mostly about show, and escaping the craziness of Bali and Lombok was nice.

We would sit outside and read under the awning that ran the length of the wisma. Someone always brought tea. There was a small place to eat nearby. And soon enough we were on our way to catch the ferry to Komodo.

I guess in a lot of ways Komodo is farther away, but given how populated it was with tourists it felt much closer.

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night

Zambia