Two young women left stranded on the earthquake-torn Indonesian island of Lombok have described the ‘incredible’ kindness shown to them by locals there.
Eva Hague, 22, and Wakefield College student Megan Bradbury, 18, arrived on the idylic island on Sunday just minutes before the 6.9 richter quake hit, tragically killing dozens of people and leaving many more without homes.
Heading inland to avoid a Tsunami warning, the pair were advised to sleep on the streets among fears that another quake could bring down buildings on the island.
It was an early indication of the sort of care by locals that could have proved to be vital.
“I can’t explain how incredible they’ve been,” said Eva.
“We’re obviously stuck but people here have lost everything, their loved ones, their homes. This isn’t about us.”
Hotel staff have joined locals in providing bedding for stranded tourists to sleep on as well as offering food and drink. Many of those stranded, like Eva and Megan, were in their teens and early twenties.
“It’s been amazing how kind a thoughtful people have been, particularly at the Aston Inn Mataram Hotel where we are,” said Eva,
“They opened up the lobby for us to stay in, but we were told it was safer to stay outside in case another quake came.
“Before long hotel staff were laying out carpets, sheets and pillows to make us more comfortable.
“All the businesses are shut down and we keep getting blackouts, more earthquakes and so many aftershocks.
“In the face of all this chaos they’ve just been amazing. We will never be able to thank them enough.”
Describing the moment the earthquake hit, Megan said: “It’s been so scary at times. We were so lucky in that we were in a car park when the big earthquake hit so there were no buildings around us.
“It’s so incredibly sad that people have lost loved ones and their homes.
“We just want to go home but some people have nothing now.”
The pair slept overnight at an airport before boarding a plane to Bali on Wednesday.