And still, they persist on writing… 😉
After we had generously left the rest of the group to sleep a little bit and to freshen up, we continued with our first day program in Bali. We started with Monkey Forest to meet the monkeys and play monkeys around while the hellish heat wave hit our favorite Ubud. It worked out fantastically. Our group had such great fun when our predecessors encircled us, according to our colleague Charles. The Forest is something like the embodiment of Ubud and never mind how many times you have visited it, it is always different.
After meeting the monkeys we continued with our walk. Act One was a walk around the village using off the beaten path which circumvents all shops and stands, otherwise our walk would have turned out into a tedious shopping parade. After that, slowly we got to the start point of Act 2 – Campohan ridge walk. This is a thematic walk outside Ubud, along the green rice fields, palm trees and forests. Well, it is beautiful, no doubt. Without excess rush we managed to walk for about an hour while following the shorter route, then stopped for a fresh juice and headed back. Our dinner was somewhat improvised in the amazing Warung of the swiss doctor, who impressed us with his foundation for giving help to local children in their professional development and clinics for medical care. The food was very delicious and it was great fun there.
For the following days we had organized a very ambitious program, supported by our local guide – Ketut. Well, it seemed to be a little bit tricky as the transport in Bali is fairly slow with narrow roads and many curves. We should not forget the age range of the members of our small organization. They demanded to have additional day off – we gave it to them because we are good.
What we did there? Besides that day of leisure we also took, we rented a scooter and drove up hill and down dale. That was our sensation. We got lost, we got found, we drove around, and we stopped and drove again. Two moments got engraved in our memories. We chose to go to a village, about 15 km away from Ubud. There was amazingly large number of manufacturers of furniture, decorations and suchlike on the road. We got very impressed. Once again we figured out that these Balinese masters were of a great class. Great sense of beauty and attention to detail. First we thought to buy at least one decoration. Then we decided that a small container will be enough. Then we finally decided to fill entire vessel. There are sooo many beauties. So, if there is someone who owns a small ship for furniture transportation – please call. Finally we reached our last stop – The Art market in Sukawati, we bought some small gifts for friends and family and headed back to Ubud.
We could not and did not want to miss driving aimlessly in Penestenan – our favorite hamlet next to Ubud, extremely green and beautiful place on the hill. We drove over hill and dale with the scooter and suddenly we came across an interesting scene. A local volleyball team of 16-17 years old boys was having a workout. The interesting part was the court itself as it was covered by clay. The workout was held exactly by the rules with all elements of the volleyball game. Half of the children were barefoot, the trainer also. It was difficult for us to imagine what is the feeling of playing volleyball but barefoot on clay. They did not have sport shoes, but they had big hearts, these young Balinese volleyball players. All the time they never stopped having fun and laughing. We have attended many volleyball tournaments of our adolescents. All they are dressed in special outfit, Mom and Dad have bought them sport shoes of famous Japanese brand (a must!). And what do we see? Young people bored with their life, bored with the game. At the bottom line it can be so easy – a smile, two nice words, the soul of a child … Dad, stop this shit!