Nasi Campur Yummyness
Trip Start May 03, 2010
40Trip End Oct 18, 2011
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Where I stayed
Since Friday was New Year's Eve, we all agreed to take it easy and hang around the resort for the day. They had a huge breakfast buffet which is always an excellent excuse to waste a lot of food. I had discovered an interesting fruit called "snake fruit" because of its scaly exterior that tasted like crunchy cheese. I pocketed a few of those every morning. Nusa Dua is an area of beach that is lined with resorts and the entire resort complex has a security checkpoint where they literally open the doors and look inside the car and check underneath with mirrors. It was kinda creepy but understandable since the bombings that have occurred in Bali in the last ten years
As I mentioned, Friday night was the New Year's party, which was compulsory with our stay. But with the Noah's Ark theme going on at the resort, it wasn't exactly what we expected. For $300 tickets, we thought it would be a cocktail party and fine dining experience, but what we found was far from it. Besides the fact that we missed the complimentary cocktail hour because we were told that the party started an hour later than it actually did, we arrived at the dinner totally decked out in party outfits. Granted, some people were also dressed up (Russian women are very glam and wouldn't miss the opportunity) but others were in cotton shorts and sandals. The buffet didn't turn out to be as good as we thought it would be, although they did have a fire juggling act which was pretty cool. I shot a video for you. So we ate quickly, walked over to the other ballroom in search of people our age, and discovering none, entertained the idea of leaving the resort to go to Kuta, the big party area in Bali. But Miriam was not feeling well still, and the longer that Richa and I thought about it, the less motivated we became
The next day, after inquiring about a parasailing excursion, we decided to venture out and head toward Jimbaran and Kuta. Everyone told us that Jimbaran is a great place to have a "romantic" seafood dinner overlooking the beach, so we had our driver take us there. When we arrived, we found a smokey restaurant with plastic tables and chairs literally on the sand at the overcast beach... so not exactly romantic. So we continued on to Kuta, even though we had been warned that Kuta was kindofa nasty touristy area. They were right, but we made an amazing discovery once we got there. I was feeling a little hungry, so I stopped at a stand with fried bananas. I pointed to the bananas, nodding my head, and the lady pointed to something wrapped up in a banana leaf, nodding her head. So I paid her 2,000 Rupiah, or $0.25, and took the banana leaf thing. I opened it to see what was inside, and while it was definitely not bananas, it looked interesting, with ramen noodles, tofu and some kind of red chutney. But without a fork or spoon, I had to carry it until we reached our destination: the Hard Rock Cafe
Ecstatic over our discovery of this delicious food, we pretty much set out to eat it as often as possible after that. The next day, after another morning spent lying on the beach and a failed mission to go parasailing again, we hired a driver to take us to Ulu Watu, a beach area south of Nusa Dua. On the way, we asked him to find us some Nasi Campur (pronounce Nasi Champur) so he pulled over at a small restaurant and ordered us all a plate. Again, it was delicious though this time it came with shrimp instead of tempe. Miriam took a video of me eating it. We continued on to the temple we were on our way to see, and enjoyed more monkeys, a Hindu prayer session and a different version of the Indonesian dance performance that Miriam and I had seen in Ubud. This performance included fire which is always cool, and a troop of shirtless male singers in checkered wraps who had an interesting take on singing..
Monday, our last day in Nusa Dua, we finally got to go parasailing. They drove us to a spot not far from the resort to an area of the beach dedicated to water sports. They strapped us in these sumo wrestler sized harnesses and life jackets. A group of young men were all going before us but they had us ready when the last guy came down. Richa ran under the parachute as he was being unhooked, and a small crew of Balinese men hooked her in and the boat was off. It drove around the shore in a circle and the whole thing lasted for a few minutes, during which time Richa circled around after the boat at what might have been 100 yards in the air? I don't know, I'm bad with estimating distances, but it was high. I went next and then Miriam. It was a ton of fun. After that, we were so amped Richa and I rode something called "flying fish," which consisted of the two of us lying on our backs on a rubber raft being pulled by a speedboat, which catches air when they get the speed up. A little Balinese dude stood over us, with no straps or anything, and just leaned to Richa's side to balance the weight. Miriam said she could hear us screaming all the way from the beach. Ha! We went jet skiing too. We had a great time and that was a fun day of activities.
After a snack of Nasi Campur, we finished the evening with... more Nasi Campur. Acutally I had fish but Miriam and Richa were all over it. So funny - we were so hooked! The next day Richa took off early to continue her vacation in Lombok so Miriam and I had breakfast together before I left for the airport to return to Bangkok. Miriam stayed in Bali another day and then flew back to San Franciso. We loved Nusa Dua and I couldn't have imagined a better way to celebrate the New Year.
And for a video montage that Miriam made of all the places we visited, click here: