Bali – April 2013 – Part 3

KhlungKung market

Balinese people kept telling us that for wedding clothes and garments we should go to the traditional market called KlungKung. It was about 45 min ride in scooter from Ubud
with no map but just instructions from google, we started the journey

Although Google maps not necessarily match the streets in Bali and there is no street names, barely any signs and nobody that spoke english that could give us directions, we arrived there.

The market seems like nothing from the entrance, deceiving that is.

Inside, this market, was impressing! it had many hidden hallways and little entrances. It was like being in a maze. It was super dirty but very Balinese, so traditional, so unique
It was a truly Bali experience and bargaining with the shops was fun.

There was so many beautiful, good quality fabrics but no dresses or pants or anything we could wear in the wedding

It was like being in this underground market and we were the only foreigners around!
The look at us, obviously talked about us, laughed at us and with us! We loved the market!!

I didn’t take my good camera to this market. I was a little wary
but I wish I did. I felt no danger or evil intentions. People here were pure
we saw more Muslims than we’ve ever seen in Bali.

One Muslim woman was fascinated with the LCD screen on the camera. She wanted to see the images. She was friendly, curious and funny!

Oh! yes, and on the way to KhlungKung we found an interesting bridge with a river dam

It was beautiful and not. There was trash but there was humanity. There was destruction but there was acceptance and happiness.

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NYEPI – New Years Celebration

One thing that we were very curious about our driving through the villages in Bali, was the presence of huge papier mache monsters! They were so ugly and huge! Some were about 20 ft tall!

Balinese use many different calendar systems. They have adopted the Gregorian calendar for business and government purposes. But for the endless procession of holy days, temple anniversaries, celebrations, sacred dances, building houses, wedding ceremonies, death and cremation processes and other activities that define Balinese life, they have two calendar systems.

Westerners open the New Year in revelry, however, in contrast, the Balinese open their New Year in silence. This is called Nyepi Day, the Balinese day of Silence, which falls on the day following the new moon of the spring equinox.
One day before Nyepi, all villages in Bali hold a large exorcism ceremony at the main village cross road, the meeting place of demons. They usually make Ogoh-ogoh (evil spirits) for carnival purposes. The Ogoh-ogoh monsters symbolize the evil spirits surrounding our environment which have to be got rid of from our lives . Some are giants taken from classical Balinese lore. All have fangs, bulging eyes and scary hair and are illuminated by torches. In the evening, the Hindus celebrating start making noises and light burning torches and set fire to the Ogoh-ogoh in order to get the Bhuta Kala, evil spirits, out of our lives.

Nyepi day is a public holiday in Indonesia, is a day of silence, fasting and meditation for the Balinese. The day following Nyepi is also celebrated as New year.
Observed from 6 a.m. until 6 a.m. the next morning, Nyepi is a day reserved for self-reflection and as such, anything that might interfere with that purpose is restricted. The main restrictions are: no lighting fires (and lights must be kept low); no working; no entertainment or pleasure; no traveling; and for some, no talking or eating at all. The effect of these prohibitions is that Bali’s usually bustling streets and roads are empty, there is little or no noise from TVs and radios, and few signs of activity are seen even inside homes. The only people to be seen outdoors are the Pecalang, traditional security men who patrol the streets to ensure the prohibitions are being followed.

Although Nyepi is primarily a Hindu holiday, non-Hindu residents of Bali observe the day of silence as well, out of respect for their fellow citizens. Even tourists are not exempt; although free to do as they wish inside their hotels, no one is allowed onto the beaches or streets, and the only airport in Bali remains closed for the entire day. The only exceptions granted are for emergency vehicles carrying those with life-threatening conditions and women about to give birth.

On the day after Nyepi, known as Ngembak Geni, social activity picks up again quickly, as families and friends gather to ask forgiveness from one another, and to perform certain religious rituals together.

Nyepi is, perhaps the most important of the island’s religious days.

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Moving to Desa Sanctuary near Ubud

Desa Sanctuary is our new B&B. It is managed by Americans and What a difference!
Everything is thought for the purpose of profit. Cheap mosquito nets, cheap shower heads, cheap hard mattresses, leaks on the roof, and the most expensive place we’ve stay so far!

Balinese way of doing things is so different. They give their best, their service is outstanding and don’t hesitate to extend the Aloha, the Spirit.

Although all decisions are made by the owners, who were in California at the time, it is managed by Balinese, which was ok.

I couldn’t sleep for the first 2 nights because the mosquito net was so small that stuck to my skin all night. I complained and they changed it for a better one. That was nice and very accommodating but I would not recommend this stay to anybody that wants to see the Real Bali. The people in charged were nice and sweet and the woman, Ketut, even made an amazing adornment for our wedding. They even gave us a flower bouquet for the wedding!

Nice pool, cute cabin, close to Central Ubud but not really as homey as the other places we stayed before, that is. I’m glad we were able to see this contrast.

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At night time we can hear the tokay geckos outside and in our roof!

The Tokay Gecko is the second largest Gecko species, about 11–20 inches. Males are very territorial, and will attack other male Tokays as well as other Gecko species, as well as anything else in their territory. They are solitary. They have a robust build, large head and muscular jaws; Tokays are reputed to be tenacious, capable of inflicting a painful bite!

you can hear their call on this video:

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IN SEMINYAK HUNTING FOR WEDDING CLOTHES

Seminyak has a totally different vibe. People offering Valium, Cocaine and other drugs like candy on the streets, and then signaling a warning that if we were to tell anybody we were to be killed! yikes!

Most people seems very unfriendly when approachable.

We spent the whole day walking the streets up and down (lots of expensive, good quality clothing stores), until we found the perfect clothes!

We were a little hesitant we’ll find a good place to eat lunch but tucked in there, unnoticeable there was “Earth Cafe” and we ate like royalties! 🙂

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April 26th – Munduk

It’s been 41 days since we arrived in Bali. Today we feel a bit overwhelmed with traffic, people, pollution..

40 days is the magic number.

Today we decided we’ll explore nature and we take a 2 hour motor bike ride to Munduk.

So many trucks on the road, huge! trucks expelling huge dark clouds of smog in our faces. We were about to give up, so tired of smog, such long drive.

We stopped and paused to see the Lake. It looked beautiful but there was a lot of trash everywhere. I get so confused, it is hard to understand.

We enjoyed our time there for sure but we were surely tired and needing untouched nature.

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ON THE WAY TO ONE OF THE MOST AMAZING, GORGEOUS WATERFALL MUNDUK

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Lovely cool weather, and we surely got what we needed…this place was so magical, so powerful.
It gave us back hope. The sound of the “chicharras” (cicada) and the sound of the water falling was electrifying and put us in a trance, in tune with the Earth

(sighs)

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Can you see my reflection on his eye?

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On the way back, we pass by an organic farm with a kitties that was pure delight, two super sweet kids an the BEST Mangosteen I’ve tried!

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Our last day in Bali

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Yoga Barn – Ayurvedic Breakfast – DElicious!

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Bye Bye Bali!!

It was very nice meeting you!

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