Bali

Trip Start Sep 30, 2013
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Trip End May 31, 2014


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Where I stayed
warung coco popies 2

Flag of Indonesia  , Bali,
Sunday, March 23, 2014

Flight, depart Brisbane 13:25 on QF533, arrive Sydney 16:00
Depart Sydney 17:35 on QF269, arrive Bali 21:00


Arrived at hostel destination with no problems. It was late and hot, but we had air conditioning, no bed bugs, a cold shower and a couple of bottles of beer, so all was well.

Bali, part of Indonesia, is a densely populated island about half the size of Yorkshire but with twice the population. The currency in Indonesia is the  Rupiah (IDR) and there are 19,000 of them to the  pound, so we are working with Monopoly money. Also they dive on the left.

Bali has a predominantly Hindu population though Indonesia is 87% muslim.  Archeological evidence shows that Home Sapiens lived here 42,000 years ago.....on their way to Australia.   

 


Monday 24th March

Woke to warmth and a breakfast of spicy noodles.

Hugged Marian with the now traditional weekly greeting of 'Happy Monday morning' and spared a thought for all my colleagues at SAA Consultants.

Explored Kuta. It's hot and very busy and touristy - exactly as expected.

There is a curious brand of Hindu here.
Many houses have beautiful courtyards with elaborate carvings. It is common to have 2 shrines for private offerings to the gods. One for the good gods and one for the bad gods.
Good God! Whatever next!

There are little piles of flowers (offerings) all over the place. Religion, or superstition, is important to these people.

Most curious is Nyepi.
On March 31st this year in Bali (but not adjoining islands) almost nothing happens. ALL the locals spend the day in silence. A 24 hour curfew for all - possible arrest for anyone on the streets. No shops will be open. The beaches will be vacant, the airport closed. I read in the local
newspaper that as a special concession tourists will still be fed and watered, but I doubt alcohol will be available.
 


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Tuesday 25th March

We escaped the hellhole of Kuta to the comparative peace of Ubud. This is the cultural and artistic centre of Bali with not so many pissed  Australian surfers.

Wednesday 26th March

We hired a driver and taxi for the whole day for 20. He took us to
This was a full day's touring in heat, sweat and an A/C taxi. I think the dance was the best bit.


 
 


 




 
After supper back in Ubud we witnessed a terrific percussion practice. I counted 24 youngsters going through similar routines, breaks and riffs to those we had heard in the morning dance session. They were really  `into it` and totally together for an hour or more without a break. It
reminded me of the best of Zappa or Beefheart.
 



Thursday 27th March

We went for a half day`s cycle adventure, though we started at 8am and  didn`t get back till 3pm - time moves at a different pace in Bali. We started by driving inland and upwards for half an hour for breakfast with a view over volcanic Mount Batur. Then we got on the bikes and free wheeled for 50 Km or so back to Ubud. On the way we took numerous off road shortcuts and foot paths through small villages and past paddy fields, each field having its on shrine to the gods.





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Our guide was very informative even though his English was questionable. We learned lots about the customs and practices of Bali. The ride downhill was great. Every now and then we experienced an intensely agricultural smell, but it isn't possible to hold your nose without letting go of the handlebars and that risks wobbling into said agricultural smell.

Friday 28th March

Taking it easy today. After an early swim in the hotel pool and breakfast we took a short walk to the local food market where they had all sorts on sale. Baskets of this and that with weird smells. One pile looked like dried fish scales. Amongst all this were chickens - alive, dead, and  cooked - and little piles of meat. Were stcking to vegetarian today.

 
 
 
Later we walked down Monkey Forest Road and paid a small fee to meet the monkeys in their forest. This is their territory, but they do allow humans to walk through, cute little things that they are.

Finaly it got too hot and we sought refge in an A/C internet cafe for some blog updates.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
Slideshow Report as Spam

Comments

Viv on

I loved Ubud, did you have the roast pork, served at the top of Ubud high street in the cafe, before you got to the international café with wonderful air conditioning!! What did you think of the monkey forest? Can't wait to chat with you both when you join us xxx

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