Crabby?…Pillowcases and clothing…Change in plans effective in four days…What was the cost?

Large visitor came to call after high tide during the night.    Look at these eyeballs!

“Sightings on the Beach in Bali”

This tiny white sail was able to pull this boat through the strong winds.

Why we decided to leave the villa five days earlier than planned wasn’t easy. We really enjoyed this place.    However, the practical aspect prompted us to think about how to manage the next few days with limited Wi-Fi access, until we left Bali after midnight on October 30.

We’ll arrive in Sydney on October 30th, (the red eye), spend one night in our usual hotel in Sydney located across the street from the port and sail away on the day of our fourth anniversary of traveling the world, October 31st.  What a day to celebrate what we’ll happily do aboard the ship! 

After the overnight stay in the Sydney hotel we’ll have recovered from the red eye (who sleeps well on a plane?) and be excited to embark on the 33-night cruise circumventing the continent of Australia on Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas.

Our original plan was to take off from the villa for the four or five hour harrowing drive on Saturday where we’d stay for several hours, not a full night, before heading to airport as required at 10 pm to board the midnight flight to Sydney. With this plan, we wouldn’t have to hang out at the airport for hours.

A friend of Ketut made these two pillow cases to fit my new pillow that came in the last parcel. The cost for both of these was only US $3.07, IDR 40,000!

The cost for these two was just $3.07 USD, IDR 40,000!

Accordingly, we have booked a room at the exceptional Hilton Garden Inn Kuta which is close to the airport. We’d use the room as a resting point until 10:00 pm, to then depart for the airport for the nighttime flight. It made all the sense in the world when none of us wanted to sit around the airport for eight hours. 

We’ve stayed at this hotel twice in these past months and with their low rates, it was a no-brainer. Then a few days ago something came into my head. Why not go there a day earlier to make sure we had at least a good night’s sleep before the red eye? 

Neither of us ever sleeps much the night before departure from a vacation home when are minds are preoccupied with getting up on time, finishing last minute packing and getting on our way. Overall, our lives are comprised of some time constraints, other than departure dates. It’s easy to get carried away with the details when you can’t sleep last night.

After wearing a beautiful top like this when we dressed in Hindu attire as shown in this post, I decided to buy a few of these lace tops realizing this would be perfect for formal nights on cruises. Ketut has given me several colours to try. I ended up purchasing five colors at only US $12.29, IDR 160,000 each!  Now I’ll have to toss five items from my luggage to maintain the proper weight.

That conversation in the pool yesterday changed to the prospect of going to the hotel next Friday instead of Saturday. Then it all changed. We got out of the pool, showered and changed and tried over and over again to get online to add the one more night’s hotel stay.

Impossible to get online for several hours, even while restarting the router, we came to the conclusion that we should actually leave sooner than we had discussed in the pool.   the owners next door having arrived on Tuesday and their use of the shared WiFi router located between the two villas on a massive pole, we had a difficult time getting online.

We definitely do not blame the owners of this beautiful property. The property listing was clear that the shared signal was sketchy. Over these past almost four months we’ve somehow managed but now, with them sharing, it’s become all the more problematic. 

Ribud and the new guy who works next door, were raking the grass in front of the pool after a very high tide brought in debris overnight.

The weak signal is simply not strong enough to suit our needs while they’re  using it as well.  Nor would we ask them to do anything differently. After all, this is their property and they’re here only a few weeks.  Like us, they also need to be online.

After waiting a few hours, entertaining ourselves otherwise, (neither of us complains), we made the decision to leave for Denpasar (Kuta) five days earlier than planned.

Finally, around 6:00 pm, we managed to get online and book the hotel at the same unbelievable rate of US $50, IDR 649,149 per night for five more nights. (We’d already paid the same amount for Saturday’s non-overnight booking). This rate includes the buffet breakfast. See below for the five-night total:

Payment details

Price for room 1
Monday, October 24, 2016 $50.47
Tuesday, October 25, 2016 $50.47
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 $50.47
Thursday, October 27, 2016 $50.47
Tax recovery charges and service fees $42.40
Total amount paid $244.28

Click here for photos and amenities for this excellent hotel.

The hotel has a free airport shuttle, a coin operated laundry, an enormous pool and a beautiful affordable dinner menu.

Last time we dined at this hotel was on June 28th, (click here for the post with photos) when the chef had come to our table to confirm that I’d been happy with the special meal he’d made for me. 

We don’t leave here early flippantly. We’ve paid for these final days and won’t be getting our money back nor would we ask for it. We appreciate all the kindness and attentive care we’ve received each and every day by the beautiful and gentle Balinese people and our household staff of four.

Guy in the ocean at sunset.

Over the weekend, we’ll pack to prepare for Monday morning’s departure from Sumbersari at 9:00 am for the four or five hour harrowing drive. Once we arrive at the hotel, we’ll be happy the long drive is behind us. 

We’ll have time to get caught up on some future booking tasks we’ve had trouble completing while here with slower Internet and of course, on Monday once we arrive, Tom will be able to watch the Minnesota Vikings football game.

Prior to leaving the villa on Monday we’ll post our final expenses for the time we spent in Sumbersari. Then, on the final day at the hotel, we’ll do the post for the expenses incurred for the six booked nights at the hotel, meals, drinks, tips, and transportation.

Regardless of the difficulty of getting online, we’ll continue to post over these next three days as we wrap up our time at this lovely villa.

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, October 21, 2015:

Fiji’s version of a “quick and easy,” or superette. Please click here for the year ago post.

Photo of us dressed for a Hindu holiday in traditional Balinese attire!

Tom and I dressed for a Hindu holiday in traditional Balinese attire.
Tom and I dressed up for a Hindu vacation in traditional Balinese costume.
Fishing nearby the shore in these tiny plastic floating boats home.

A couple of days ago, Gede suggested that we attend a Hindu religious celebration on Saturday (yesterday) in a temple just after the end of the paved road. He’d asked the two Ketuts to bring the traditional colorful clothing for us to wear which is required to enter a temple which includes sarongs, special shirts, lacy women’s tops, colorful silk sashes and for the men, a cloth hat called a udeng.

We were excited at the prospect of dressing in the beautiful clothing and taking photos of the special annual festival, Sharad Purnima, which includes offerings of food, incense and flowers, music, dancing and a prayer service.

Ketut, one. 

Sharad Purnima is described here:

Here is a description of Sharad Purnima: It marks the end of the monsoon. There is a traditional celebration of the moon and is also called the ‘Kaumudi celebration,” Kaumudi meaning moonlight.

At night, goddess Lakshmi is worshiped and night vigil is observed. According to a folk-tale, once a king fell on evil days, and was in great financial straits, but then his queen observed this fast and night vigil, and worshiped the goddess of wealth, Laxmi. Consequently, they were blessed by the goddess and they regained their prosperity.

It is also believed that on this day as the moon and the earth are very close to each other, the moon rays have certain healing properties of nourishing the body and the soul.”

Regardless of one’s personal faith and spirituality, its difficult to find fault with the teachings and philosophies of the Hindu way of life.  Hinduism, when practiced and fully embraced results in the astoundingly truthful, gentle, loving and thoughtful nature of these special people as shown below:

“Truth, kindliness, austerity, purity, forbearance, discrimination (not in a negative manner against  discrimination of others), control of mind and senses, ahimsa, compassion, contentment, detachment, and devotion to the Supreme Lord are some of the virtues that Narada talks about. Among the basic virtues that testify to one’s integrity, being truthful and honest tops the list.”

Ketut, two.

As we were about to embark on the long walk to the temple, it began raining in buckets. (With no parking available at the temple, we’d have no choice but to walk). Only recently have I started to recover from my June 1 injury. Tom suggested we not go out into the rain. The muddy road is slippery when wet and I would run the risk of slipping or falling.  

After a recent rain storm we’d attempted our usual walk on the only road from the villa, but had to turn back when it was simply too slippery for me at this time. We just couldn’t take any chances after over four months of pain and discomfort which finally began to abate in these past two weeks. 

Usually I’m not that sensitive, but we’ve had to make some hard decisions about what I can and can’t do at the moment. We decided that while we waited for the rain to dissipate, the road would remain slippery. It just didn’t make sense.

We’ve never minded getting wet as evidenced in this and many posts of our past adventures. In Paris in 2014, we visited Versailles (see photo below) after spending no less than 90 minutes in the pouring rain at the exquisite Gardens of Versailles, a venue not to be missed.

Here are our favorite views in the Gardens of Versailles.All of our photos shown on this post were taken during a torrential downpour. By the time we entered the Palace of Versailles we were soaked through to our underwear. It was worth every moment.

Getting soaked on the promenade here in Bali was not our preoccupation, other than to prefer not to ruin the beautiful clothes. This special dress is required to enter a Hindu temple, especially wearing a sarong. 

There are umbrellas in the villa, but the use of one would barely have had an impact on the reduction in the probability of falling. Sadly, we stayed behind. Instead, the two Ketuts created a special celebration with us as they “dressed us” in the layers of traditional clothing and took today’s included photos including a lovely offering bouquet with incense and flowers they’d picked for the occasion.

In our travels around the world, we have been limited in participating in some activities that other tourists can participate in such as bungee jumping, zipline, scuba diving and snorkeling.

Tom, dressed and ready for the Hindu celebration in proper attire.

As much as we’d enjoy some of these activities, we accept my limitations as a result of my precarious spinal condition. Not an excuse. Just a reality. A single injury worse than the most recent could put a quick end to our travels. This possibility became especially relevant over these past months.

I’d rather be a joyful world traveler continuing with our plans and dreams for the future than one who is required to abruptly discontinue traveling due to a single incident. We’ve hardly spent these past four years avoiding many activities as illustrated in our over 1500 posts, nor will we in the future.

Today is Sunday, our staff-free day. It’s sunny, hot and humid.  Yesterday’s temps rose into the 90’s F, 32’s C which is expected to continue through the week with humidity averaging in the 80% range creating hot and relatively uncomfortable days.  Today, at 11:00 am, it was 88F, 31C, feels like 102F, 39C.

But, folks, we’re in gorgeous Bali for 11 more nights and pay little attention to the weather as long as we stay safe. Hot?  Dripping in sweat? No matter! Be happy!

May you be happy as well!

Photo from one year ago today, October 16, 2016:

Coincidentally, one year ago today it was raining so hard in Fiji, we couldn’t see the ocean. For more photos, please click here.