Thursday, 19 November 2015

Bali ... where the gods dance at night

Each (Hindu) house has its small shrine, and a god to protect the inhabitants. Our Villa Sarah Nafi has its shrine just inside the main gate. Each morning Juli the housekeeper gives the god a small cup of sweet coffee, maybe some fruit, and sets fresh flower petals in water in the doorway.
When Pastika the gardener arrives, he removes his conical-shaped straw sunhat and stands silently before the shrine. Then he starts work. He is very cheery, as are many of the Balinese we meet. Tomorrow he'll take us on a walk down the steep ravine, over the crunchy leaves that lie deep on the paths, guiding us between boulders and over slippery sandy stretches...
And this morning's delight is a Balinese body massage. Being still somewhat coldy-coughy (too long in Kuala Lumpur airport!) I am really looking forward to this.
So far only two mosquito bites and no sunburn at all.

We are eating Balinese vegetarian (but include eggs and fish). Cooked by Juli and each meal a delight.
Now to plan our expedition to mountains, waterfalls and Buddhist temple: for Monday.
So far no rain, though this is the rainy season. But the world's climate, as we know, is topsy-turvy. That said, it did rumble a little yesterday.

The nights are deep quiet and dark all around. In the distance lights twinkle along the shoreline and car lights move along the coastal road. Then there may be tremendous rustling and noises in the undergrowth, often sounding very close. Sometimes a Hindu ceremony, singing and gamelan, very musically pleasing. At the appointed hour a muezzin calls from a mosque way down on the coast. There is a half-moon now, and from our window looking seawards, the dark sky can be seen filling with stars. I sleep undisturbed by frog or night bird. Inside the klamboe!

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