May 13, 2010
Where I stayed
A short drive takes us to the Tanah Lot Temple before making our way to Ubud. On the water, the waves crash through it. Being here, walking along the cliffside brings me back home. So warm, not even the coastal breeze can stop the internal resevior from coming out. Wading through the ocean to get to the temple is the only way. Photoshoot with some Indonesian hipster girls from Sumatra who wanted me in all their photos. Loving all the gates to Balinese temples. Back on the bus for another short ride till the Panorama Hotel in Ubud, the art capital of Bali. A hike through fields of rice paddies takes us to an organic restaurant for lunch in the fields with 360 panoramic view of rice paddies. We continued to town and I left the group to explore on my own for my findings of the Ubud Palace. Very beautiful. No time to taste or chew our food. Late for the Kecak Ramayana and fire dance. Rushing over to our reserved seats, a scene of men chanting "cak cak cak" caught me by surprise. The monkey dance wasn't much of anything but short of entertaining. In hope that there was more to the show than wierd composed noises, the last section, the trance dance (Sang Hyang Djaran) caught me by surprise and left me in awe. In an atempt to protect society against evil spirits, a guy with a symbolic horse dances and kicks fire several times. With black feet, he feels no pain, no burn, in a trance so deep I could feel it. Eyes closed, he dances all around kicking fire towards the audience getting inches away from contact. The end is near and men tackle him right in front of me to waken him from his trance. He's arms length away from me and nothing but silence surrounds me. I'm speachless to witness what I would call torture. He's aware and feeling his feet and probably the after efects of what tremendous pain he put his feet through. Breathing deeply and consistent he stayed on the floor, unable to rise.