One of the main reasons I was in Bali was to see the mola mola, an odd-shaped fish also known as the Ocean Sunfish. Quite a few times we went out into the blue in hopes that this elusive fish would turn up, but ended up seeing only blue and bubbles.
It was quite frustrating at times because we’d spend plenty of dives off the reef, meaning that we saw neither the small stuff on the reef nor spotted anything big out in the blue.
We’d get our hopes up whenever we saw bannerfish. Mola molas generally come near to the reef when they want to be cleaned and it’s these funny-looking fish that clean the even odder-looking ones. Still, after my scheduled 12 dives I had no luck.
The morning I was going to leave, I thought I’d put in one last dive, this time to a site called Blue Corner. Blue Corner is infamous for having treacherous currents and basically being a pain to dive, but somehow I was 13th time lucky. Perhaps it was the little flower talisman my guide Wayan floated on the water before the dive, perhaps it was just plain luck: the currents were mild and most importantly, a mola mola appeared out of nowhere.
It looked more like a rough stone age tool than a fish. We saw it circle round a few times, shoot up to close to the surface and then disappear into the depths.
No doubt it was a very short experience and I’d definitely wanted to see more. But such is nature and that’s what makes these encounters special. Even my guide, Wayan, was so happy and kept signalling his glee – all the way till he had to let out his surface marker buoy for our ascent!
It was a great way to end my diving at Nusa Lembongan. One thing I know is that I’m definitely going back!