Adventures in Sorong

My day didn’t exactly go as planned. Instead of dealing with pigs, wardrobe, makeup and kids – I went to Sorong and dealt with crowds, shopping, and taxi drivers.


While planning out the wardrobe for the first few days of filming, Art Director Libby Woolems and I quickly realized that the shirts we bought were going to be way too large for the tiny kids in our scenes. So I was sent to Sorong to purchase more kid shirts, shorts and an assortment of other items needed for the production that couldn’t be found in Raja Ampat.

Sorong is about two hours from the dive lodge on Mansuar, so I had 25 minutes to pack a bag and get on the boat that would take me there. I spent the next two hours with three local islanders, all great guys, trying my best to communicate through pantomime.


I met my interpreter in Sorong and we spent the next four hours scouring stores for the items we needed for the shoot. After arriving back at the hotel, I decided to get ready for bed at 7:30pm – my Orange County-self could barely believe this – when there was a knock on my door. I answered to find Howard Hall, our underwater cinematographer with his wife Michele! I had no idea they were at the hotel and or that they would be leaving that night on the Pindito, the live-aboard boat we had chartered as the home base for the underwater crew for the next few weeks.  They were planning to join the topside crew on Mansuar tomorrow morning, so it was decided I would hitch a ride back with them. 



Dinner with the Halls that night was wonderful—Howard and Michele have amazing stories from their many years diving and filming all over the world--but our meal was interrupted by an urgent text requesting an important lock for our camera crew. I headed back into the streets of Sorong where, after haggling with a taxi driver, I bought the lock at a local supermarket. I got back to the hotel just in time to board the Pindito.

Drifting off to sleep while moving across the ocean is wonderful.  I had a great night of sleep, and even though it was still dark when I awoke the next morning, the sunrise was well worth it.


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