Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I is For Indonesia



Indonesia



While on our Australian cruise, we stopped in Bali and Semarang, Indonesia. Without a doubt I found Bali to be one of the most fascinating places that I ever visited. Upon arriving in Bali, at Padang Bay, we were met by hundreds of little children all clamoring for our attention and our "one dollar". They would sell anything for "one dollar". I often wondered if they knew so little English, but they knew how to say "one dollar". There were also the  ladies who carried piles of batik fabric on their heads willing to bargain with the passengers for their dollars. We brought home many beautiful pieces of batik as souvenirs  It became a game for us to see who could get the best bargains from the batik ladies.



Although to most it is unimaginable,  we did not even go to the beach while in Bali. There was just so much more to see and do. It was like an ancient civilization and we were far too excited to explore, rather than visit another beach.

English: Tegalalang rice terrace Ubud Bali 201...
English: Tegalalang rice terrace Ubud Bali 2011 panorama (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
We visited the Uluwatu Temple that sat at the top of a cliff and jutted out into the Indian Ocean. Most of the Balinese people are Hindu. Foreigners visiting the temple had to adhere to the dress code and wear a sarong. They gladly rented you one before you entered the temple. This island is very attuned to tourism and always ready to make a buck.


The focus of their culture is in the town of Ubud. Here we watched puppet shows, shopped, and ate. One of the dishes that I remember tasting while on the island of Bali was spiced duck cooked in banana leaves and black rice pudding. Very tasty.
 As we made our way by a small tour bus into the town of Ubud we passed through the farm land and observed the terraced rice paddies. A real site for a modern American. They were plowing the land with plows pulled by oxen and harvesting the rice with machetes. I felt I had been transported back into time.

We attended a Balinese shadow puppet show in the afternoon of our visit. Shadow puppets are attached to long rods and preform behind screens while the story is being told. Very odd! And I came home the proud owner of two Balinese shadow puppets. They are really ugly, if I do say so myself. But a big part of the tradition of Bali. I'd be happy to part with them if you know anyone who is interested! They look almost like the one in the picture above. They are currently living on a shelf in my coat closet.







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12 comments:

  1. A shadow puppet show sounds a little strange but something I'd like to experience :)

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  2. My uncle is living there right now for work. I really want to go visit!

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    1. You should. It is beautiful! Well Bali was. Semarang was another story entirely!

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  3. I love batiks. The puppet show sounds amazing.

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    1. The batiks were beautiful. And so easy to pack to bring home as souvenirs. My friends loved getting to pick through my piles of batik!

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  4. I have never been south of the equator... and so many of your posts are pulling me towards it!

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  5. I can't believe I lived in Australia for almost 40 years and never made it to Indonesia. I will eventually head back down under, Indonesia is definitely on the must visit list. - I like your ice photo's too.

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    1. Especially go to Bali. You will never be sorry.

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  6. It's funny how we get caught up in the moment sometimes and end up buying things we don't even like, or wouldn't buy normally.

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    1. That is so true. And I only wanted one of them but the guy kept pushing his Two for the price of one deal. I have been a doll collector for years but these never really fit in my collection.

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