Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Bali, Indonesia- Here we come!

We left our cozy little abode for an adventure that we have been planning, saving, and looking forward to. Packing light, we hopped a board a bus for Seoul. Flying out of Incheon International Airport, amazing hub by the way, we jumped over to Taipei and then to Denpasar, Bali. We got a bargain on our tickets which meant that in trade we got there at 2:00am. A driver from the bed and breakfast was waiting at the airport to take us to our bungalow. It was so warm and inviting. We crashed right away. The next morning we were awoke by a rooster next door. I am normally not a morning person, except when I am on vacation. I grabbed the camera and went for a stroll around the grounds. We were very surprised with the beautiful accommodations that we had landed. During our nine day stay we had scheduled to stay in three different towns. This was a wonderful first.

All of the bungalows have thatched roofs and open to the pool.
It was terrific having a 24hr pool right off of our front porch.
We ordered our Continental breakfast first thing. The definition of "Continental Breakfast " here was definitely different that what we were use to. It included your choice of fresh squeezed tropical fruit juice, locally grown coffee french pressed, granola, yogurt, fresh tropical fruit, toast, eggs, bacon, sausage, rice, jams and jellies, rice cakes, and pastries. There was fresh coconut cream and palm sugar to add to the coffee. Fantastic was one of the words that we used to feebly describe what we tasted.

We loved the bungalows the simplistic elegance was just what we needed.
The bathroom was a favorite as well. It opened up to a private garden.
Our good friends Fiona, Mike and Alissa had also come to Bali too and we planned a number of activities together. First stop in town was the beach. The shallows stretched out about 300 yards to a sand bar which we waded to. The waves broke on the reef just beyond the sand bar.
We found a sweet starfish and had to check it out. The crystal clear water made it easy to see the wildlife at our feet.Something we had to get use to was the new currency and the inflated denominations that we used. $10 US dollars was equivalent to 100,000 Indonesian Rupiah. It was fun getting the hang of bartering with such crazy amounts and using bills as 50 and 10 cent pieces. At times it led to some confusion.
The beach vendors had an array of beach dresses, sarongs, and jewelery. Chelsie enjoyed looking through all of the colors and picking out some accessories.

I watched a kite sailing in the blue sky just as a ship sails in the endless blue ocean.
From the beach, we caught one of our first glimpses of the many temples in Bali.Chelsie and I caved to the tourist trap and went for a ride on a tube.
Back at the bed and breakfast, we noticed some turtles in a box near the kitchen. We inquired as to if they were what was on the menu. The chef explained that it is actually the opposite. They buy the eggs of the sea turtle at the market, which many people buy to eat, and then hatch them. He took and showed us the boxes where the eggs spend 50 days in the sun and explained that 7 days after they hatch they go and release them in the ocean. The turtles are endangered and protected by the government, many people still enjoy the eggs. The bed and breakfast makes an effort to save as many as possible.
We were able to see one of the tiny little guys poke his head out.
That afternoon, we accompanied some of the staff to the beach for the release.

Driving to a beach where there were no boats, we took them from the box and set them on the waters edge. The little turtles fearlessly headed out to sea.

We really enjoyed being in another culture with lots of new places to see, people to meet, and foods to try.

Stay posted for the rest of the adventure.


Jeff said...

THAT was marvelous, from the continental breakfast to the 1.6 Million Rupiah to the shot of Howl's Moving Castle in the sky to the temple to the sea turtle story. That's the B&B I want to support. I would go to Bali just for that place. You and Chelsie seemed to be having so much fun in the tube, but we went swimming in the Arkansas this afternoon, by the "cliffs" below Swissvale, and everyone seemed even happier. (Except the two teenage girls who suddenly appeared in the flow around the rocks red-faced, sputtering, exhausted and scared. They'd gone upriver and jumped into a very choppy rapid that pulled them under by the rocks and spit them out downriver. They seemed to have learned a valuable lesson.) Many thanks for the arm-chair vacation. Youse guys, go travel more.

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