Saturday, June 12, 2010

morning, we( unclepapa, auntiemama, mum and i) walked to the town to do a last minute shopping, only this time, we were more confident walking around the town compared to day 3 night as we were more familiar with the roads. we bargained and bargained and bargained until we got the lowest price possible. not so satisfied with the price, we moved to the next shop and the procedure was repeated. from shop to shop, from street to street, until we found the best and bought what we wanted(within the time limit as we should hurried back to the resort to meet up with the rest and head to airport).

here, i would like to share with you something i saw in almost every household. something for them to worship the mountain.
Lastly, a photo we took at the Ngurah Rai airport waiting for our flight back.

bali day 3

Day 3 at Bali was madness. we travelled to the most southern part of Bali (Uluwatu) and back to most (almost) northern part of Bali (Bedugul) and then to the west coast of Bali (Tanah Lot).

At first, our driver, Made Kunawan, did not think that we can make it due to the miles that we have to cover. However, being a very nice person and Balinese (Balinese people are super nice), he actually drove us to all the places we wanted to go.

First stop was Uluwatu. It was a temple built on a cliff that oversees the Indian Ocean. The view was breathtaking. They were supposed to have a celebration the following day. So, there were a lot of people preparing for it. We were warned about the monkeys (lots of them), so we hired a "tour guide". And let me continue to tell you how useless it was!

We were climbing the stairs up to the temple when an adult monkey came from behind to snatch unclepapa's glasses. All we saw was a brownish shadow running in the speed of light and the next thing we saw was the monkey up in a tree (luckily it was a short tree) with unclepapa's glasses. We thought the monkey was only curious about it, but we were so wrong. He chewed it! unclepapa ended up paying Rp20k for food that served as a gift to the monkey in exchange with his glasses. Luckily, the glasses weren't badly damage and needed only minor repair (which we fixed later at sogo during dinner).
(tutufish is wei siang's pic)
(note:took my glasses off)
Lunch was at a place near Kuta recommended by Made. It was a chinese restaurant called Dewi Sri and we tried the Ikan Gurami (recommended by Made) cooked in sweet and sour sauce. The food was quite ok and the price was cheap.

After lunch, we started our adventurous journey to Bedugul. Bedugul was a bit like our Cameron Highlands, except that the roads were straighter and easier to travel on. The weather and temperature there was just like Cameron Highlands too. One big distinction was that it has a huge lake. We were supposed to travel in a speedboat to a temple (looked like a mosque to us) at the other side of the lake. However, we thought it was not safe enough to take that option with little Gabriel traveling with us.

(aiyo, i am darker and fatter)
We then continued our journey to Taman Ayun(candi) which was located not too far away. However, we were a bit out of luck because it started raining when we reached there. It should be quite beautiful because the entrance was quite impressive. there was a huge candi in an even larger garden deep inside.

With no other option, we proceeded to the Tanah Lot which was supposed to be the highlight of the trip. Tanah Lot Temple was built about 50m from the shore. Hence, it could not be reached when there was a high tide. Not too far from the temple, one can see Indian Ocean-facing cliffs. The view and stories about Tanah Lot were very amazing. You have to find out yourself to appreciate it! photos cant tell how breathtaking it is, everything look smaller in photos, it's giant large actually, we took those scenery from a far view.
(ugly me, my hair all blown up by the strong wind.)
After visiting Tanah Lot, it was time for dinner. We met up with huifen's sis and family. she recommended this restaurant in sogo called Es Teler 77 which served Indonesian food. The food was quite nice too.

Little Gabriel met his younger cousin Curtis for the first time. He was not too happy when his grandma carried Curtis. He complained and cried non stop. little gabriel was jealous for the first time.(credit to gabriel, he's been very obedient overall, no baby 脾气 that can seen in some babies)
after dinner, we shopped a little, only unclepapa, auntiemama, mum and i, the rest chatted at the restaurant and went back to the resort after that(by taxi). after shopping, we then walked back to the resort, asking people for directions, took about near an hour to reach the resort, i guess.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

something about bali

1) their cars. the people there either use motorbikes or big cars. they use motorbikes because the roads are narrow. they use big cars because cars are cheap (Toyota-about RM50000, avanza less). what about the medium sized? the only medium sized car that they use is Toyota vios, seriously! and they only use it for taxi!

2) their business. tourists business, obviously.
tour guide, drivers, hotels, shops, restaurant, tourist spots......
other than tourists business, they also carve idols. all kinds of idols can be found every roads, every shops, every corners, every houses.....everywhere! bali is about tourism and religion.

3) their names. balinese has got no surname, like the indians. there are a ton of people in Bali called Made ( Ma day ), Nyoman and Putu. There's a good reason for this. In Balinese culture if you are the first born ( male or female ) you will be called either Putu, Wayan or Nengah. Second born will be called Made or Kadek, third born Nyoman, Ika or Kamang, fourth born Ketut. If you are #5 you go back to 1. when someone says ‘Made called for you’ I really don’t know who they’re talking about. The advantage to this system is that if you forget someone’s name you have a shot at guessing it.

4) balinese's crime rates- near zero. why? because crimes are not good for tourism. because they depend on tourism to earn money. because they don't need extra cash, they are happy living simple lives. because even though they have extra cash, where can they spend? on cars? their cars are cheap. on houses? their houses can never be built higher than their doors( according to their beliefs). expensive stuffs? they rather have homemade traditional stuff.

5) poverty? those poor poeple in bali are mostly javanese.

6) religion? kind of like hinduism and buddism. so expect pork to be sold in mc donald!

7) geographical factors. in a small island like bali,....wait, bali is no small island to me. from one place to another, is like travelling from state to state. so it's a suitable place for tourism. one island can offer you nature, town, kampung, beaches, mountains, historical places, cultural spots, places to shop, highlands, water activities......

8) their tv channels. since bali is part of indonesia, indonesian channels. since it is also as near to australia as malaysia, we can also watch australian channels. for kuta townhouse, the place i stayed, i can watch about 24 channels.

9) shoppings. remember to bargain until it's at least 50% cheaper. remember to buy in rupiah, not ringgit.

10) chinese that speak indonesians are indonesians, chinese that speak malay are nyonya. fair looking good fashion sense chinese are chinese from china, taiwan or hong kong. yeah. balinese that sell stuffs like chinese better than nyonya, because they can sell at greater price. we nyonya can really bargain!

11) language. balinese speak balinese among themselves, they speak indonesian with other indonesians, they speak english with tourists, but when they sell things, they can speak chinese, japanese, korean.....

12) no mosquitoes, hardly any flies at the beach.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Bali Day 2

good morning, bali!

We stayed at Kuta Townhouses in Kuta(near denpasar). It was located at Poppies Lane 1. It was a decent-sized apartment operated by an Australian named Andrew. It was like a mini Australia and we were the only Chinese tourists there.

(chocolate from mas airline)
Breakfast was provided every morning from 8:00am to 11:00am. pancakes, fried noodles, fried rice, toast, salad, sandwich....
After breakfast, we went to Batubulan for the Barong Dance performance. The entrance fee was Rp80k per person. Barong was a creature that Balinese treat as idol.
After the show, we proceeded to a batik shop.
then, we headed to Ubud for the infamous Bebek Bengil (Dirty Duck) for lunch. The restaurant was located next to a paddy field and we got to have lunch viewing the field and enjoying the breeze.
After lunch, it was time to continue our journey again. Our next stop was Goa Gajah - a historical place where some Balinese monks meditated.
After Goa Gajah, we visited a temple - Tampaksiring (a holy spring). It was a place where Balinese wash themselves believing that the holy water will bring them good luck and health.
Bali was a volcanic island. Mount Batur at Kintamani was one of the moutains and it had a great lake beside it. Together, they made a magnificent view.
After visiting Mount Batur, it was time to go back to Kuta for dinner. We decided to pay Warung Made a visit. It was highly recommended on the internet, but just like any food you can find in m'sia, so tourists, do come to m'sia! However, we do recommend the refreshing Papaya Lemon and Pineapple Lemon.
That was Day 2 at Bali - it was very exhausting :). We canceled the plan to go shopping at night because all of us were so tired to even move our toes.

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