The police drop by while Tom is out having his first grovel in the shoulder high surf. They are young and polite, apologise for the disturbance and keep their motorbike helmets on for the duration of their visit. It is customary to check in with the kepala desa (village chief) and the police upon arrival, and give them a copy of your passport and expected length of stay. That way, if there is any “what what”, they know where to find us.
Five years ago there was only one resident policeman; now there are 25, and a new police station with living quarters was built last year to house them. It is local rumour that the increased force is to dampen any ideas the nearby army may have about showing off their strength. It is comforting to know we have the police on our side of the channel.