The beautiful bold beachy Bali
14.12.2014 - 19.12.2014
I know I haven't even finished my SEP blogs... err coming up soon?
- Arrive evening
- have dinner
- Early rafting on Ayung river (Payung coy. US$40)
- stuck in jam due to rain-floods, and only got back at 5 plus, went shopping
- Legian to surf/tan (haggled IDR300 for 2+1h lesson)
- lunch at local place
- walked all the way to Potatohead at the far end of Seminyak for dinner, cab back
- Ubud day trip, Panama bus at 10am
- cab to Penestan, walk to Campahan and to Ubud city, down main street plus Monkey forest
- 1.5h full body massage (a bit too soft but very relaxing, IDR80)
- early dinner and rest
- 1.30am bus pick up for Gunung Batur (volcano) climb (~US$40 with Bali Eco)
- ~4am actual climbing began
- 6.30am sun begins to rise, most people 5min from the peak
- 1-2h to see volcano hollow, climb to highest point, play with monkeys, eat breakfast (boiled eggs, plain bread, fruits, tea)
- walk back + bus ride (incl. send other people back to their hotels): 11.30am
- 12.30pm driver picks us up (Patur coy. IDR720 for the day)
- Padang padang was small and rocky, too hot, too many staring men, left after 0.5h and after I climbed the rock heh
- Jimbaran was beautiful and big but the sea completely filled with floating rubbish
- Chilled in the sun, read, seafood dinner (not really worth it, it wasn't that great)
- Watched sunset, birthed the idea of the Space Shuttle Playlist
- 1.5h Full body massage (different place, much stronger, less relaxing, IDR110)
- Reggae bar with a cold Bintang
- unable to wake at 5.30am for last beach time
- Caught cab to airport
- Last IDR spending at the bookstore
- Counting money, converting currencies
- Goodbye Bali
I really liked Bali overall, to the point that I'm actually seriously considering returning one day! That's saying a lot, coming from me. There is a lot to do there, much more than can be done in 4 full days. I still want to surf, and you can go diving and explore hidden beaches, and the nature reserve-ish area as well... Much much more! Other islands like Lombok can be enjoyed, and a much bigger mountain to climb (worth 1 or 2 days). And of course, a lot more laying on the beach and sun-burning/-tanning and reading of books.
The people are overall really nice and gentle, and quite helpful too even though mostly the English isn't very good (some broken malay helps at this point). I did particularly HATE how the Jalan Legian men hawk their wares though. Absolutely detested, I wanted to punch them. When you walk past they would call you stuff like sexy, darling, beautiful, and if you ignore them they curse at you in Indo, if you politely say no they might continue trying to get you to buy stuff. Honestly the worst part about Bali for me.
I learnt a bit more about haggling, both from a skill as well as a moral point of view. I learnt to bring the first price down way low, past what I think is fair, because generally the price is below what I think is a low price lol. And also to be able to take a stand, say this is my final price. If they think they can go down to it they will the second you turn away, if not they will continue to persuade you hard.
Morally, there is the question of how low do you want to go? Yes, in many cases they can afford to go lower, and it isn't necessarily a loss for them. Is it a scale between compassion and weakness? Or are those two things separate affairs? Why should it be considered softness, weakness, if you aren't able to bend the person to your will? I sort of get it if you're picture the guy as a hard sly wily bloodthirsty greedy merchant, because then it seems strong and smart that you see though his schemes. But I guess most people are just trying to make a living, and yes they are trying to get the highest price as possible, and are haggling without evil personal intent the same way I am. In that case I'll push it to what I think is fair ie. sometimes it could go lower but it's already very cheap for me so nevermind.
I travelled with P and T, and their SMU/Habitat friend J. It was quite interesting travelling with one new person, and I guess occasionally feeling like an outsider? Sometimes she was in that position, it couldn't be helped, but it was nice to sort of see my prejudice and stereotyping fade away a little bit. Like we were discussing, girls like me and P tend to hold a little grudge against girls who fit into the 'perfect SG girl' mold, like J (we discussed this in front of her). But it's great cos J isn't really like that, she's still really nice and all, not a pretty bitch or anything. lol. I think I need to continue to learn to be open minded and not form pre-conceived notions of people before really knowing them. Easier said than done.
So, I've returned from Bali sunburnt and happy (I've always wanted to say that), with a ton of cleaning to do (especially because of the impending renovation) and a lot of small climbing things that I really don't want to do, and my interim report (!) and my Last Respite to-do list, including lots of books. Nonetheless I've spent the past 2 days binging on Fun Run 2 ever since K gave me his 32GB SD card. I'm only 600 points away to my Rasta headdress!