Off we go!…Final expenses for two months in West Bali in an exceptional property…Final favorite photos…

It was business as usual with Tom wearing a sarong as the required dress to enter the temple. He had a hard time managing the steps.  He just didn’t have the same experience as women who’ve worn long dresses, knowing when to hold up the hem for ease in walking.
Me, at the monkey temple wearing the required sarong.

“Sightings on the Beach in Bali”


The flow of the river at low tide. 

This is our last post from the West Bali villa.  Soon driver Butu will arrive to drive us on the harrowing four hour trip back to Denpasar which is only 74.5 miles, 120 km, where we’ll spend tonight in a hotel prior, flying to Singapore tomorrow afternoon.

This is where we dined each night with views of the pool and the sea.

We’re excited for the upcoming two months in Southeast Asia, especially once we’ve completed the process of acquiring  the three necessary visas hanging over our heads while we’re in Singapore for a week. 

The entrance to the villa.  Water spouts from the trunks of these elephant statues.  There are Koi pools in front of each statue.

The packing went well especially since we’re able to leave the duffel bag behind in the storage room awaiting our return, saving us hauling an extra 25 pounds, 11 kg, of items we won’t need in the heat of Southeast Asia. 

These two chaise lounges provided us with shade for part of the day.  Later, we’d move to the shade of the cabana.

After completing the packing yesterday, we weighed our bags only required to pay US $19.39, IDR $260,000 for the excess online.  That was good news.

The villa from the beach side.

Yesterday, Gede stopped by to say goodbye. We presented him with a generous tip for all he’d done for us.  This morning we tipped the two Kataks and Ribud.  They were grateful, graciously acknowledging the tokens of our appreciation. Interacting with the four staff members six days a week had been delightful.


The infinity pool and Jacuzzi view from the second level.

Also, yesterday was  our last day poolside.  It rained in the morning with the sun not peeking out until around 11 am.  Once the sky cleared we couldn’t get outdoors quickly enough to sit in the comfy shaded chaise lounges on our last day at the villa.

By early afternoon, it rained again driving us back indoors while it rained into the evening and again this morning. Overall, we’ve had very few rainy days during these past two months.

Kingfisher sitting atop a palm frond.

As we prepared the final expenses, using all the data we’d previously entered on the spreadsheet we were astounded to see how affordable the two months in Bali proved to be. 

Four buffaloes passing on the beach.  Its amazing these young kids can handle these large animals which obviously know them and cooperate.

Once you peruse these numbers, you too may be surprised at the reasonable cost of living in this fabulous property with a full staff to attend to our needs.  We can’t thank the staff and owners enough for the finite attention to detail in this property and anticipate our return with happy hearts.

Dragon fruit, a popular local item. 

Here’s the numbers which are among the most reasonable we’ve seen in our 44 months of world travel:

Expenses for 59 nights:  US Dollar to IDR Indonesian Rupiah

Vacation Rent:   US $ 4,648.03  IDR $62,330,082.30
Airfare:             US      579.96   IDR     7,777,263.60
Taxi:                 US     403.00    IDR     5,404,230.00
Visa Extension:  US     122.57    IDR     1,643,663.70
Tips/Laundry:    US     435.22    IDR     5,836,300.20
Wifi (SIM card)  US       20.32    IDR        272,491.20
Groceries:         US     935.00    IDR    12,538,350.00
Restaurant:       US       60.00    IDR         804,600.00
Hotel:               US       61.00    IDR         818,010.00
Pharmacy:         US      28.00     IDR        375,480.00

Total:                             US $ 7,293.10  IDR $97,800,471.00
Average Monthly Cost:  US $ 3,759.80  IDR $50,418,918.00  

Average Daily Cost:       US $    123.61  IDR $16,576,279.17



Flower market in Lovina. 

The above referenced grocery total included the cost for all the items purchased by the cooks for our meals plus all items we purchased on our own.  The above mentioned restaurant amount is an estimate for tonight’s dinner in Denpasar.

Beach views.

We couldn’t be more pleased with this Bali experience in its depth and breadth of what we’ve learned about the Balinese way of life, the affordable cost of living, the luxury and ease of living in this beautiful villa and the wonderful people we’ve come to know and love. 

Beach views from second story at high tide.

We’ll be back tomorrow with comments after dinner in a restaurant and the night in the Hilton hotel in the capital city of Denpasar!

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Photo from one year ago today, June 27, 2015:

One of many quaint outdoor/indoor restaurants along Williams Esplanade In Palm Cove beach in Australia.  Please click here for more details.

Solutions as we wind down..

Although now sick with the flu, I’ve had no time to rest in an effort to speed my recovery. Forcing myself to continue running around, making phone calls and completing tasks in preparation for leaving Minnesota in five days has been trying.  

Tom’s retirement party is tomorrow, Saturday at 5 PM. My voice sounds like Minnie Mouse and I’m weak, coughing and foggy headed.  Perhaps, this is Nature’s way of warning me to slow down.  Not a good time to teach me a lesson, Mother Nature! 

The mailing service, MailLink requires notarization of legal documents with literally no daytime hours for Tom to go to a notary.  After speaking with Eric at MailLink he reassured me that there was nothing to worry about.

He suggested we go ahead, sign up, pay the $156 annual fee for the largest mailbox via PayPal to get the documents notarized when we get situated in Scottsdale.  In the interim, they won’t be able (due to state laws) to forward our mail until they receive the forms.
Over the past several months I’ve reduced the amount of mail that we receive by contacting the various companies requesting they only send online notifications and statements.  Most were able to comply.

In the near future, it appears that snail mail will become a thing of the past as evidenced by the financial difficulties of the USPS. Today’s fast paced technological advances continue to have an enormous effect on the use of paper and mail in general. Perhaps, in time as we travel, we’ll no longer need the services of any form of a mailing service, receiving all communications by email

A portion of Tom’s income from his work will no longer be paid by direct deposit as his paycheck had been over the past many years. This in itself presents a dilemma. How do we get the paper check “mailed” to us into the bank? He requested direct deposit for these payments to no avail.

We considered asking one of our adult children to receive the payments by mail immediately depositing the checks. Realizing how annoying and inconvenient it would be for them with their full and busy lives to be watching for the checks and subsequently depositing them, we decided it was too much of an imposition.  We didn’t want that inconvenience ourselves!  Why would we impose this on our children?

In speaking with MailLink, they suggested we do what their other clients do in a similar situations:

  1. Use the provided MailLink  address as our mailing address
  2. Provide them with deposit slips and mailing envelopes made out to to our bank’s department that handles incoming snail mail deposits.  
  3. MailLink opens the envelope, scans a copy of the check to our email, signs the back of the check, “deposit only” and then mail in one of the envelopes provided.  No deposit slip is required per this service offered by our bank.
  4. Within 2-3 days the deposit it made into our bank at which point they email us a receipt for the deposit.
  5. Check online banking to verify the receipt of the deposit.
Cumbersome?  Yes?  Alternative?  Hire an accountant or certified money manager and pay $100’s in fees each year?  No, thank you.

Next task? Oh, yes, they continue.  Insuring our belongings.  With the documents signed on the sale of the house, we are ending our homeowners insurance on the day we leave, October 31st.  At that point insurance ends on our belongings as well.  Today, I will wrap up the details of our new “personal property” insurance.

The estate sale is in progress.  Yesterday, the first day, was a bit challenging.  It was snowing, the roads were slippery and the wind was whipping at the time the sale was to begin. 

At 7:00 am yesterday morning, sick and miserable, I showed up the house to meet with the estate sale people to finalize pricing and details.  The wind and sleet on the peninsula felt like a hurricane as I nearly was blown away finding my way from the driveway to the front door in the dark.  Somehow, the detector for the exterior lights were turned off. 

By 9:00 am, as the sale began, I was visiting with our friend and neighbor two doors down, peeking out the window to witness the caravan of cars driving down the narrow road to examine and hopefully buy “our stuff.” It was hard to watch.  I left an hour later for a delightful stress-reducing lunch with the neighbors at our favorite local restaurant, as opposed to the breakfast we had planned earlier.  Its so hard to say goodbye.  The worst is yet to come.

Once again cocooned in this comfy leather love seat as I write today, my voice is gone, my throat less sore and the cough is slightly better as I prepare for the tasks of yet another day in limbo:

  1. Finalize personal property insurance policy
  2. Go to bank to get extra deposit slips and arrange for the mailing service to send them the pension checks
  3. Pack a box of overflow to be shipped to Scottsdale and held by UPS until we arrive on November 4th.
  4. Check on final details for Tom’s party tomorrow.
  5. Grocery shop and prepare dinner as I have done each evening since moving here last Sunday. After all, a good house guest must earn their keep.

Yep. Five more days.