Our onward Dunia Mas #2 bus arrived just before 10pm and took us - somewhat uncomfortably - to Bima by 3am, earlier than we had expected. There was a local bus sitting at the station which took us to Sape ferry terminal but only after we sat on the bus until 5 am. We traveled from Bima just as the sun began to rise and during our 1+ hour ride I enjoyed seeing the unfolding valley of rice and waking/walking children to school along the way. We were both very tired after now on the move for 24 hours and still not at our destination. We got off the bus about 7:30 right in front of the ferry ticket office. They let us on the ferry right away but not being familiar with the setup we took a bench on one side of the already crowded passenger area, there was no upper deck just the covered one which had platform like beds as well as seating (all taken or in a separate room, lots of family with small children). The ferry did not leave until 10am so there we sat for pretty much the whole time until we arrived in Labuan Bajo at 5pm! My backside suffered but at least we were in a breezy location which helped with keeping away from the constant chain smoking going on. The French fellow sitting with us (there were only 3 other 'tourist' looking passengers) said he'd read that Indonesia is the only country in the world where cigarette smoking/consumption is increasing!
We were very tired after our previous bus travel and now an 8 hour uncomfortable ferry ride with no way to sleep. I was exhausted really, still we checked into Gardena Hotel , the closest LP recommended place to the ferry dock, and then went checking out transport to get to Rinca and the Komodo Dragons, our real purpose for this extended travel into Flores.