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Published: March 14th 2018
MR & MRS
We are somehow always ending up near water.
Guess you could say, "We get high on water."
When approaching Bali, Mount Agung is usually the first bit of land to appear on the horizon. This 9,944 ft perfectly shaped volcano dominates the Bali skyline. In December and January, Agung, which means “great,” sent sparks, steam and rocks flying in a succession of eruptions. This disrupted tourism and displaced many residents seeking shelter away from the mountain. Fortunately, by the time we arrived, Agung was sleeping peacefully. At least for a while.
Bali is one of 18,000+ islands in the Indonesian Archipelago. The people and special spirit of Bali makes it our favorite of all. Bali is a Hindu island in a Muslim country. It is the land of “Eat, Pray, Love.” It has its own music, dress, art and at 90% Hindu, its own religion.
Bali is called the land of 1000 temples. I would say that 10,000 would be more accurate since it seems that every block has some type of temple. There are bat temples, snake temples, monkey temples... temples to every deity you can imagine. Plus, every home has a religious monument or altar of some type to make daily offerings. Our driver Augung has his daily offering bowl on the dashboard of
Bali has temples dedicated to various deities.
his car. Balinese life is totally structured around Hinduism. Indonesia does its best to make sure that the various religions co-exist peacefully. Near the port on one block there are five religious houses lined up side by side. Buddhist, Islam, Catholic, Hindu and Protestant in a show of ecumenical unity.
We contacted our driver/guide whom we have toured with on previous visits. Named Agung, just like the revered volcano, he met us with his van when we disembarked. We went to a wood carving shop, a weaving workshop and the rice paddy terraces en route to Ubud. He suggested going to a Balinese restaurant for lunch which overlooks a steep, verdant canyon with a good view of Mount Agung peeking through the clouds. Ubud is the heart of the creative arts of Bali. I would love to ship a container home filled with carved furniture, garden statuary, light fixtures and batik. It is all so unique.
The Regent Navigator was in port when we arrived, so we dropped anchor in the bay and tendered ashore. The Navigator is on her world cruise and we know many of the worlders on board. We saw Peggy, Jim and
WORLD CRUISERS CLUB
We reunited with cruisers from Navigator--- Jamie, Jim and Maryanne, Suzanne and us.
Maryann, and Malcolm to name a few. We ran into Jamie, the Cruise Director, whom we have had years of fun with, especially at Jamie’s Diner. The Silver Whisper was going to take the Navigator’s spot when she departed the pier that night. We were on our balcony watching her sail out when all of a sudden she came to a dead stop. We later learned that in order to avoid hitting two unlit fishing boats, the ship had to swerve and ended up aground. Once they got her off the mud she went back into port to await inspections of her hull. That took another day to get the divers to complete the job. Fortunately there was no damage and 36 hours later the Navigator was given the all clear to continue around the world.
Agung picked us up for another day of touring and this time we went to the southern tip of Bali. Nusa Dua is the tourist capital of Bali. There are beautiful beaches, good surfing, fancy hotels and lots of nightlife. There are some high sea cliffs where secluded beaches can be found. We spent the afternoon at the beach and we got
RICE PADDY TERRACES
This steep paddy is terraced by switchbacks to provide the right amount of water for the rice.
to use the hotel lounge chairs and towels and had a nice lunch.
Next stop is the island of Java as we wend our way through Indonesia.
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