Surf's up.....but not in our pool!!!
24.03.2010 - 09.04.2010 32 °C
We left for Medan airport with hopes that our tight schedule (4 hours between a connecting flight in Asia is a risk) would work out. We got there really early as Anna doesn't like to rush, and found out that our flight had been delayed by 2 1/2 HOURS!!!!! Well I'm not much of a "Traveller" at the best of times, but i was panicking and getting in a right old hump. I calmed myself down by having a Dunkin Doughnuts (Anna's always telling me im too skinny) and when we left we found that it was now down to a 2 hour wait. We ended up landing with not a lot of time to spare, got something to eat and then went to check in. And for that we had another 2 and a half hour delay. Great. Now this Airport was tiny and was in the middle of nowhere so we had little choice but to sit on these uncomfortable chairs and wait. We ended up landing in Bali about 8pm, having left Medan at 6am, and was very tired. Anna had wanted to be a proper "Traveller" and look for local transport in the form of a Bemo bus. I on the other hand was more willing to hail a cab. Anna won and we set of looking for the bus. But alas, the buses had finished for the night and we got a cab. We found a room for the night, but paid more than we wanted so the next morning we went on the search of somewhere cheaper. Not only did we find somewhere cheaper, but we found a place which had a large outside swimming pool, free breakfast and a nice room for about 8 quid a night. We checked in and basically spent the next few days relaxing by the pool. Whilst having lunch one of these days a girl handed us one of many fliers that we got for the many nightclubs that litter Kuta. One of the promotions was free drinks and free food for an hour between 10pm and 11pm. Too good to be true right.......well wrong. We turned up expecting there to be a catch, but walked in for free, ate and drank for an hour and left. Result!!!
It was more of the same for about 4 days as we soaked up the sun and ate like kings. We had a very big meal with starters, mains, drinks all for 5 quid. So far Bali was looking like a great place to relax, just what we needed after all the trekking we had done. However our next stop was Ubud, which is about an hour and a half inland. It was much colder than Kuta as it was in the hills and it rainned most nights. Anna had wanted to see the volcano's close by, which i presummed was a nice bus ride up there walk around and back down. But no, it was a wake up at 2am, catch a bus to the bottom, walk 2 1/2 hours uphill for the sunrise at the top. Up and down it was around 10Km, but very steep and at a ridiculous time of day. To be fair it was amazing up there and the views were some of the best we have seen. Unfortunately on our way down we found out that at the spot we where 5 minutes before at the top of the volcano, a Swedish guy had just fallen in. We later found out he had died, so was a very scary feeling as we had just been standing where he slipped in.
The day after we went white water rafting, which is something i have always wanted to do. It was fantastic, albeit a little tame (will be doing a more advanced one in NZ). Anna seemed to love it too, although spent most of her time sitting in the bottom of the boat and not paddling. All good fun. After all the hard work of the past few days we wanted more relaxing sun, so headed back to Kuta and the same guest house to chill by the pool.
We also wanted to explore Bali a bit more so decided to hire a Scooter. It was all going very well and we got to see some temples (we had to carry sticks in case the monkeys attacked us!!!) and a nice beach with bigger waves than we had seen.....so far!!!. However on the second day it all went wrong when we got to some traffic lights. I basically had to move over to let a bike and taxi run through a red light. This in turn made my front tyre stop on the lines at the lights. Little did i know that there was a police officer watching and as the light turned green he summoned me over. Oh s**t, what did he want i thought. We had heard that they were notorious for fining tourists on bikes and thats exactly what he did. I got ushered over to his office and he explained what i had done wrong, pointed out i didnt have an internation driving licence and explained i owed him 400,000 rupiah (40 quid, 2 days budget money). I think not i thought, and explained i only had 100,000, which he was happy to accept (guess he was just hungry and wanted lunch). At least he was then kind enough to escort me back to the bike. Cheers.
With this we decided to give the bike back a day early and spend the remander of the week surfing and relaxing. Surfing was good fun although neither of us managed to stand up very long. Plus the dirty water and the many Indonesian men who all seemed to want to have there picture taken with Anna and another other western woman made us head back to our pool. Off too Singapore next for a weekend with Simon and Emily.