Salam! Selmat Pagi!

Trip Start Sep 01, 2010
Trip End Dec 01, 2010

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Ombak Bagus

Flag of Indonesia  , Bali,
Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wow. Bali is pretty amazing. I was just informed that it is Monday (now Wed i think?) and so far, we have had some pretty great experiences. Pretty much just getting settled. Nothing too crazy, but I did surf (or attempt to surf) some pretty outrageous waves. I definatly have some muscle to build if i'm going to keep up with the surf here! Ryan has only gotten barreled a couple times so far...nothing too spectacular, but I have respect for his surfing out here even though he's checking the reports next to me looking for more impressive swells. I have to admit, I was actually scared the first couple times paddling out. It is officially time for me to learn to duck dive. (for you non surfers that means having a board small enough that you can duck under the breaking waves instead of just rolling over and taking the hit) I am building strength and looking forward to the vast opportunity to imporve my skillz. Holla!
As for our transition period...Within the first few hours of arrival (in the pouring tropical rain) we were on a motorbike (something Ryan swore he wasnt going to do on this trip!) zooming around the fairly local town of Canggu. People definatly looked us up and down as there are not many westerners staying where we are, inland a bit from the beach. We went out at dusk and got so many "road bullets" in the face (to use a term of my dad's meaning any flying bug or rock or tiny object that hits your face on a bike) most of which were bugs large enough to be classified as mammals. Then, an angry street dog chased us down the street nipping at our heels! Welcome to Bali! We got to the beach, had a quick look and then crashed out just around dark. Our homestay is wonderful and we have a few new friends (Dutch/Aussie) and an invitation to stay north of sydney when we arrive. Ryan has only had one minor scrape of the knuckle from duck-diving a wave on his third surf outing of our first full day in bali. We went into seminyak a nearby town and the shopping is amazing! the clothes are suprisingly stylish. not as cheap as i would have guessed, but i think we can keep looking. The Food is very healthy and fresh (*amend that: not healthy as i previously thought). One main dish, Nasi Goreng is fried rice and veggies with an egg on top and is apparently a breakfast food. I prefer the Jaffle which is more of a pressed breakfast sandwich. So far other than exploring seminyak and Kuta, we have just been getting compfortable with the culture and our little town of canggu. We will hopefully be taking a language lesson tomorrow. Indonesian is suprisinly easy to learn. And the people here!!! they are sooo nice...cant wait to get into some conversating ;)

Ok, updating again, We have left Changgu and are now in Seminyak. We looked around for a few hours in unbearable heat and chaos and finally figured out the first place we looked had the best deal....typical. For 450,000rp a night (roughly $45) we have ac, hot water, and a beautiful pool. oh sweet luxury. the pool we have discovered is absolutely crucial. Had another surf session. Waves were barely breaking in this area. Here is a story for you: We went to change money not knowing exactly what the official wallstreet exchange rate was, but just picking a spot that offered (9,000ish which is apparantly higher than it should be.) I heard that the money changers can be shiesty but i decided to see if we could play them back at their own game. I went it to change $200 dollars, he started counting it out in 20,000rp notes (which is about $2) and very fast like a vegas card dealer. I kept stopping him so i could recount it as he counted it out, but whenever we got close to the sum, he would pick it all back up and start counting it became clear he didnt want me keeping up. So i said we were leaving because it was waaay to many small bills, so he pulled out 50,000rp notes (about $6) I was watching closely to see what trick he was going to pull and after we had carefully counted it out, into piles he asked me to give him change for the final note to make the total correct. As he said this he started gathering the money piles and as I "looked to my wallet" to start to count change, knowing this was the point where the fast one was going to be pulled, His friend made a noise but my eyes went straight to the money and he slid a huge stack off the bottom and into a slightly open drawer below him! I pointed right in his face and said "SAW THAT!" picked up my things and walked out. haha! I was very happy I had heard to be careful, and after that, none of the other money changers in that area would take us! we went into an official building where they were way more concerned with whether our $100s were fake than the other way around.

Hope Everyone is well! I miss you guys a bunch, and everyone on this list is floating in and out of my thoughts....cant wait to see your faces again...but not too soon! teehee...

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Brooke on

Wow! I wish I could beam myself there!

Chris on

You are doing such a great job keeping us up to date!
Love you for doing that, I worry less because of it. I
am not surprised that you foiled the money changer,
NO ONE puts one over on you!

Uncle Tim on

Brings back memories, I'm so happy you are getting to experience one of the coolest places on earth. Wish Dawn and I were there. Have fun and I'm looking forward to following your adventures.

Edward on

Dude, I love following your entries!!
I know you are exploring around alot, but
if you have more time please add more stories..

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