Day 109 - Touching the Holy Snake

A quick tour through our second place
July 25th, 2015

Today started at 10, and a slower pace. Thank God. I like seeing stuff, but I've never been a fan of the "culture by machine gun" approach to travel. Then again, it was nice to see so much of Ubud before fleeing the city.

Nick is gone, replaced by a different taxi that the villa's owner helped us find. We were planning on snorkeling today, but the sea is rocky and our boat has been cancelled on our planned return trip. The hotel we booked wouldn't let us cancel without forfeiting our money. Change of plans.

Rice paddies aren't uncommon to see
Shopping, apparently! A more casual day, indeed. This is good and bad because I like the break, but have to slow down the spending. A lot.

The New Place!
The cities I've so far seen have given the impression of some old, religious world, fused with the modern, and maybe not the best regulatory practices on their city planning. There are various giants around the city - massive statues of Hindu gods in impressive posturing and spectacle. Occasionally after prolonged speaking in Chinese and laughing, they'll lean forward and say "we're laughing at you," flashing a picture or explaining something I did and/or said. Glad I can be good for a laugh. I used to have a problem with arrogance and taking myself too seriously. Things like this are good to keep you humble. At least I hope so...

The entrance to the tourist trap!
We arrive at the new place, which is also fairly amazing. Minor problem with the air conditioning, but that should be easily resolved. It's 2pm, and we've done nothing. Time for a siesta. It's a holiday and all the stores are closed, so we need to figure out something that's open and nearby. Change of plans.

Onward to another city where it's supposed to have a nice sunset point! Here's hoping we make it in time. I've been noticing that some houses have these wooden racks full of clear glass bottles that contain a green-yellow translucent liquid. These are bottles of petrol for sale, the cab driver tells me. Not quite what I expected. For some reason, I was thinking some type of cooking oil.

Civets and some little kid playing with them!
We arrive at a tourist trap temple on the beach. The correct name of which was hidden by their accents. So many tourists, but a gorgeous view and a temple on a large rock standing alone just off the beach. We took many photos, saw a holy snake (don't know why it's holy) and grabbed a bite to eat in the marketplace. A woman sold me a pack of postcards, which I talked down from $5 to $4. Might have been able to 3.50, but there were 15+ postcards in the pack.

Temple on the Rock
Though I can't understand the languages, I can understand the body language and general read of the people. I'm also not ashamed of asking seemingly stupid questions. For instance, picture a flat hand, Palm down, shaking back and forth. To me this means "no" or "cut it out", but in Indonesia, it means "yes." I would not have figured that out if I hadn't asked. Now I know. Merchant or cabbie coming at me? Hand up (stop) and "no, thank you" then ignore them.

Holy Snake: TOUCH
There were several restaurants nearby. Choosing one at random, we ate a modestly priced meal. Things here seem on par with Canada, but super cheap when compared to Perth. The food itself wasn't bad. I asked to go to the washroom, and they pointed me to a nearby building, as the restuarant we were in was more like a standalone shelter. I wander into the building, ignore the onward gaze by the bored staff, and go to the washroom. After being in Perth for a while, you learn to just use washrooms without asking, if at all possible. What are they going to do, make me take it with me? Ask forgiveness rather than permission, I say.

After dinner, we snagged some very cheap gelato, and perused some shops. 26er (26oz) of vodka? $6 AUD. Mickey (13oz) of vodka? ...also $6. What? I only found that with one brand of one liquor, but no one wanted to get drunk so I let it alone. Not wanting to buy any clothes or trinkets, I stopped by the coffee shop that had Luwak coffee and civets leashed up out front. I pet one, which didn't like it very much, and took my coffee to go.

We made it for Sunset
We ran into a problem when we tried to leave: no taxi and the number we had would only pick us up if we had a local number. Luckily, enough people speak English that we could figure out who might be able to help us. After asking two separate people, we made our way to a police station where they spoke some Mandarin, Japanese, and English. Together, we demonstrated where we wanted to go. Into the cab!

Again, plans changed. We wanted to go to the mall and duty free, but that will have to wait. We would be cutting it too close for time. Back home!

Coconuts are cheaper than water.
But first, a supermarket and circle K (aka a knock off 711). We grabbed some food for later, breakfast, and drinks around the pool. Ahhh, yes. A quiet night around the pool with some drinks. Lee played around on the inflatable bed thing, and we held a breath-holding competition. After a while of that and pictures, we called it quits.

While we had been in the pool, I had received a tweet from an author I like. I'm new to twitter, so I was pretty excited about him thanking me for suggesting his book and following me. I didn't even tag him, so I have no idea how he even saw it. In either case, I used it as an excuse to call Steve, back home, to catch up while Shimou settled our accounts and the others watched Days of Future Past.

Pool at Night!
The AC was still broken, as was the waterfall for the pool, and we had tripped a fuse when we used the microwave. We did without. Joy and Lee ended up moving their mattress to our floor due to all the mosquitos in their room.

No comments:

Post a Comment