As we continue our reflection on 2020 – The Year That Wasn’t!, we share a rundown for those of you out there wondering how we are going out here at Resort Latitude Zero in 2020. We hope you enjoyed our April update. Here’s our May’s reflections.
At the beginning of May we started docking our fleet of speedboats at RLZ and settled into the strange new and isolated normal of 2020.
We cautiously started venturing back to all regular surf breaks and slowly realized there were quite a few other foreigners who either chose to lockdown in Telo or simply got caught out by the crazy speed of changes to freedom of movement across the globe and within Indonesia.
Along with ourselves from RLZ, we had Sooly and Ben at Sipika, Luke and Phil at Telo Vila, Dingo, Billy and Wobby at Telo Island Lodge. Some had wifi and satellite TV and some didn’t so every surfing session was a catch up on how everyone was going, sharing stories and passing on news from the “outside world”.
Not much of that news from the outside world was ever good news during May and with the islands effectively cut off from the mainland to ALL passenger travel indefinitely and Telo COVID free, most conversations switched quickly to local weather and wave forecasts.
I guess you could call the first week or so of May a bit of a honeymoon period- the Indian Ocean was heating up and what better place to be stuck in isolated and safe lockdown with just a dozen close surfing buddies and all these perfect waves…right? We will score empty peak season swells for a month or two, a vaccine will be found, everything will be back to normal and all our awesome guests will be able to join us again to share the stoke of surfing Telo for the second half of the year?… or so we all thought…
May is normally considered one of the stella months of the year for waves and weather. May 2020 started with a handful of memorable surfing days that can only be described as pure Indo perfection as the boys gouged themselves on a two-day barrel fest to kick start the month. Things were looking good.
However, right on the equator here in Telo we are quite sensitive to El Nino and La Nina cycles. Generally El Nino years will be predominant dry south winds and La Nina patterns will result in more rain and north wind influence and although in May no “official” call had been made on what 2020 & 2021 could expect from the S.O.I. indicators by week 2 of May it was already very clear to us we were heading towards La Nina conditions for the second half of 2020 and into 2021.
For the majority of the month remaining we were lashed with severe storms, wild seas, strong winds and erosion across many of the islands we regularly visit in the surrounding area. Some of our more memorable sessions were had in the second half of May were with John’s kids right here on the island in front of the bungalows riding rare storm surge. Even Larry the wonder dog couldn’t resist getting a few at his local.
Check out some of the surfing action below from Resort Latitude Zero as we started to take stock of what was going on in the world and settled into the month of May 2020, “The Year That Wasn’t”.