Jimbaran revisited

Trip Start Apr 05, 2006
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12
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Trip End Aug 30, 2006


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Flag of Indonesia  ,
Saturday, May 13, 2006

The past couple of days, we have taken trips north to Ubud. It's about an hour from our home base, and is often titled the "cultural center" of Bali. It is also known as the primary artist enclave in Bali. And on the road to Bali there are a constant string of towns (you can't tell where one ends or the other starts). Each town specialized in a particular craft. Woodworking in one, paintings in another, stone carving, jewelry, etc., are all represented.

Yesterday we took Oma, and today she had other plans so we went alone. Both days were primarily shopping for art. Neither of us know a lot about paintings, but good stuff is so cheap here that we plan to buy something nice. We found one we really like, but it is 3x as much as some very similar works that we found. We'll probably take one more day next week and look at them again. Hope we don't get ripped off; I guess I shouldn't have worked my way out of that art class in college.

I also have to return to the subject of the Jimbaran seafood grills. That is where we had the awesome seafood meal I wrote about. Well, we had to go back (and it won't be our last time). First though, we decided to get some fresh fish from the nearby fish market.

Oma loves pasar (markets). When we pulled up to the market she got out of the car with the authority of a seasoned gangster going into an Italian restaurant to exact revenge on on a wiseguy turned snitch. You could tell that even though she'd never been to this place before, this was HER TURF! No kidding.

First we go to this guy selling shrimp. Big ones, little ones, and every size in between, whatd'ya want. Oh, you want the big ones huh? Well that'll cost ya.

Oma quickly puts him in his place and gets a lowball price. Then she inspects each shrimp that they give us to make sure there's no duds.

"Hey, drain that water before you weigh that, we're not paying for water!"

Then we move on to one of the staple fish around here, red snapper. Not sure the scoop there, but we had to pass on the red snapper. The guy might have looked at her funny. On to the tuna. I left Oma alone, since if I come with they assume that they can charge "bule price" (cause whitey's have money to afford to pay more). She waves me over after she checks the goods and gets a price. We like what we see, and complete the transaction.

So after 30 minutes at the market we get 2 pounds of JUMBO shrimp, 1 pound of "snack size" shrimp, and a 5-pound fresh tuna. What did that set us back? $14 USD. Crazy. What are you folks doing not getting your butts down here right now?

Since we're already there, we need to go back to Dena's. I thought we were going to walk out of there because Oma wasn't getting the price she wanted to pay. There's 8 identical restaurants, so I wasn't in danger of not getting my fix, but Dena's had been good to us so far. We finally get our price, and it's the same routine as back at the market. Empty the water out before you weigh it... that's only a head, there's no body on that one, etc... She also tried to determine the sex of the crabs before selecting them. Not sure how that worked out for her; I was fine either way.

Then we walk to the beach to select our table. All of the tables next to the surf are full. Gangsters don't sit near the toilets in a nice restaurant, and we don't sit away from the surf if we're eating on the beach. So we made them move our table from the back... we made them move them to the... well, to the front. Worked out good for us. No as good for everyone else.

I don't think I did justice to this food the last time I wrote about it. They set the food down and we're all business. The only talking going on is small talk used measure up your competition.

- "Can I take another crab leg without getting a fork stuck in my arm for being too greedy?"

- "Hey, hey, is she going to eat that last prawn?"

It is positioning too. "Maybe if I pretend to be full, I will trick my opponent into politely saying that she's full too. Then those last three prawns will be mine!" It's a real chess match. Mentally exhausting.

So we had 2 whole crabs (I don't know what kind, but they're quite similar to Dungeness, not sure of the sex either), 2 pounds of big prawns, and a pound of clams.

Me, I'm all about grilled prawns. Seriously. There could be a table full of swimsuit models in the middle of a pillow-fight right in front of us. Their swimsuits could burst into flames and I'd still be positioning for that last prawn. Wouldn't even notice them.

Oh, and what did all of that cost? The seafood, the fixins, 2 big lousy beers, and soft drinks all around... $24 USD. You on the plane yet? Still pricey for here, but really, you can't eat like that anywhere else I've found.

Wish we had pictures, but I forgot the camera...again. I've got to work on that.
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Comments

thetukes
thetukes on

Only $24!!!???
Holy sheesh! All that for only $24? Jee whiz. I love your updates. You guys seem to be having a great time. I love the pictures too. I feel like I'm there with you! What amazing experiences. Have fun. Keep posting! We love it. Miss you. See you soon.

Love,
Salat and Ashley.

PS! Got a new job as an Underwriter with Wells woo hoo!

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