We are in Bali this week. It is one of the Indonesian islands. It is to the east of “Java” (which is the largest Indonesian island and the island where President Obama spent a portion of his childhood). Unlike the rest of Indonesia, Bali is Hindu, not Muslim. It has about 3.5 million people. I visited Bali 13 years ago, but I hardly recognized it because of all the changes. The people remain gracious, kind and beautiful, but development has taken its toll on the islands infrastructures. There are too many tourists, too many hotels, too many cars, and not enough roads. It is a shame what being ranked by some as “the best island in the world to visit” has done.
So far, we have been only in Jimbaran, Kuta, Seminyak and Denpasar. We have lounged by our pool and taken all of our meals at the resort. We ventured out to see two Hindu temples. On our way out to the temples, we needed to stop by an ATM machine, (now one of my favorite places to go, as I’ve never used one prior to this trip). We were in total shock when the amounts popped up on the screen!!! $500,000.00, $1,000,000.00, and $1,500,000.00!! WOW.. what large amounts! We decided to go for the $1,000,000.00 as we have never seen that amount of money before. Once we received it, we discovered that it really is only about 90.00 U. S. Dollars…. It totally burst our bubble of millionaires!
Whew…. Now back to the Temples we were on our way to visit. One is called Tanah Lot, a 15th century temple, and is the most photographed temple on the island. It is located on a rock formation close to Bali, but separated from Bali by high tides. The second temple is called Pura Uluwatu. It is an 11th century temple and is sometimes called the monkey temple because it is home to so many wild monkeys. The monkeys steal everything they can from the tourists and them slowly trade back the items stolen for food. There have been many stories of tourists losing cameras, iPhones, sunglasses and hats to the monkeys. Rita was told to really be careful with her iPhone, b/c they will jump you and take it and run up a tree and then bargain with you to get it back. I had to remove my hat before going in as hats are at a high commodity also.
We can tell we are near the equator because the temperature and the humidity are quite high. For example today, it is 90 degrees and 62% humidity. Sounds like a pool day to me.
Hummmm… which pool shall it be today?
Tomorrow we go to Ubud, where Julia Roberts went in Eat, Pray, Love to find love. I was in Ubud 13 years ago and loved it. I am eager to see if the movie has ruined its quaintness and agrarian base.
We forgot to mention on our last blog that Rita’s granddaughter, Annabelle turned 3 on the 15th, her grandson, Owen turned 5 on the 28th, and other grandson, Brody will be 2 on Nov. 11th. Happy birthday to all of them!! Miss them all very much!
Love you all !!! Norm and Rita
Our first stop in Bali, we stayed in Jimbaran. Here’s a few of our first pictures upon arrival.
Now let’s take a walk around the grounds and check out the place.
Whew!! Finally made it to our villa.
We visited Tanah Lot.
And then on to Pura Ulawatu but we had to pass by these little guys that steal your stuff!