At home in Bali
Trip Start Sep 24, 2009
69Trip End Apr 30, 2010
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Where I stayed
Mustapa Gardens, Legian
It’s funny that without even thinking about it, I just slipped into speaking Indonesian rather than English. I was instantly and totally at ease wandering around Legian – even though it’s been 15 years since I was last here.
The place has changed so much in some ways and yet remained the same in others. For example, the new flashy high-tech stores built amongst the old style stalls. The sellers aren’t quite as aggressive as they used to be although they still won’t let you walk by without suggesting you come have a look at their shop or offering transport.
The hotel I’m staying in is on Jalan Legian – about a 10-15 min easy walk to the beach. Within the complex it has the feel of the Bali style compound with lots of trees, birdlife and a small pool. It’s a lovely and serene escape from the craziness outside. The rooms however are very tired and outdated, and the bathroom is…. Well, let’s just say that you aren’t encouraged to linger. (I wish they would scrub the walls!!). Never mind – you get what you pay for, and I am easing my way into the backpacker lifestyle!
I wandered down Jalan Melasti – the road leading to Legian Beach – a road that I have walked on many times in the past. It turns out that this is the last day of a 3-day food festival in Legian so there were lots of things happening down at the beach. I grabbed some nasi campur for lunch (a mixed rice dish served in waxy brown paper) and ate it on the beach. There were throngs of people there, but surprisingly, there seemed to be more Balinese than tourists.
Just as I finished lunch, a big parade came along Jalan Kuta, turning up Jalan Melasti. There were people in traditional costumes from Bali and other parts of Indonesia, marching bands (!?), Balinese dancers, kids on decorated bikes, etc. It was fun to watch – but I was annoyed that I didn’t have my camera!
That night they had an Australian band playing on the beach so I sat down there listening to the music, the waves and enjoying the cool breeze and ocean air.
I love being back in Bali – and the awful headache is finally gone!