Archive for October, 2006

Sunsets in Bali

Before I headed for Bali, even for the first time, I heard about the sunsets in Kuta beach. I didn't see it during last December, the entire place was overcast for the whole trip. This time round, I confirm the information was right. Beautiful sunsets almost everyday.



Sunset by the beach is just a stone's throw away from the hotels that lined the streets of Kuta and Legian. The beach is packed with people once again.



The sun sits on the horizon. A sight that is so rare, if not impossible in my country. A pair of kayak-ers drift beyond the breaks to catch a better, perhaps bigger sun, while I made the best out of what I had in hand.

Bali – Peace Revisited

Condolences poured in as Bali mourn the deaths of the victims of the 2002 bombings. Paddy's Pub opened a new joint a few blocks down the street, a sign that the Balinese will not bow to acts of terrorism. The increased tourism says it all.



The former Paddy's Pub, site of the 2002 Bali bombing remains unoccupied. A grim reminder of the disaster and also a sign of respect for the departed.

The Kuta Dog



The fastest post-911 check-in

“My flight’s at 9pm”, that's what I told everyone who asked me what time will I be flying back to Singapore.

Here's the sequence of events,

517pm: Made payment for a rip curl rash guard for a friend and walked towards Kuta beach for the sunset 

625pm: Sun set’s over, walking along the beach towards Hard Rock Cafe. My idea was to reach the “Internet Outpost” where I left my luggage by 7pm, so I can take cab from there. 

648pm: Browsing some DVDs at the shop near Internet Outpost 

705pm: Got my luggage and asked the lady at Internet Outpost to help call a cab. 

713pm: My cab isn't here yet. I told myself, I'll wait till 720pm. 

716pm: I got fedup, I asked the lady to check on the taxi service, she said the cab is on it's way. 

723pm: She asked me, what time was my flight, I said 9pm, but I need to be there abit earlier. I saw an empty cab approaching, ran out and flag it down. The traffic behind the one lane road honked impatiently while I load up my luggages. The lady told me it's not the right cab, I just told her I’m sorry but I can’t wait anymore. 

725pm: Cab driver told me 60k ruppiahs to Denpasar International Airport. But I only have 55k max. He accepted the discounted overpriced taxi fare. He asked me what time is my flight, I said 9pm and he said I still have plenty of time and hope there won’t be a huge jam. While he was driving, I went through the photos I took earlier. 

745pm: We reached the airport. I went through the security screening and started looking for my flight counter, but none seems to be open. On the board it says “SQ147 – 20:05″, “SQ141 – 09:15″. 

748pm: I checked with one of the staff in the airport, they told me the counters are probably closed, but led me to one of the SQ ground staff. 

750pm: Ground staff told me, the last flight for SQ out is 8pm. She started communicating with other ground staff and within 5mins, she passed me a boarding pass and escorted me to the gate. 

800pm: I was ushered into the flight and luckily, I didn't have the whole flight waiting for me. Although I think the cabin crew knew I'm the LOST one:P 

805pm: Hot towel was served… it never felt so soothing before…

Looking back, I can't believe I'm strolling along Kuta beach at 630pm when my flight's scheduled to take off at 805pm. The SQ ground crew of Bali are the most helpful lot I’ve known. The lady (I didn’t catch her name) didn't even show signs of displeasure, all she wanted to do is to get me on the flight. I am very very grateful. Bali, I’ll be back again:)

i'm still alive

Finally got some connectivity in Bali. I resisted any form of connection till today. Well, I'm on a 9pm flight back, which leaves me with approximately 5 hours before I have to head for the airport from Kuta.

The trip went well, we had plenty of good food. Mentally rested, but not enough. Physically tired from all the surfing and beach activities during the initial part of the trip. But I'm happy with the tan I got though:)

I'm looking forward to go back and finish up where I left off. 1 week in Bali certainly is not enough, but like those quick charge battery chargers, it will last me for a while before I need another break again.

I hope I’ll be able to catch another sunset this evening at Kuta before I head back. Here's one I took on the 2nd day of the trip. 



:: Sunset at Kuta Beach ::

“It’s my wedding!”

Was covering a wedding and here’s some of the interesting conversation that went on…

groom: so, we won’t be doing any table to table shots

me: oh, that’s good, so you have more time to mingle around

groom: is there anyway to do away with the yum seng?

me: yeah, some people just do a toast

bride: … but my dad wants the yum seng…

groom: … but it’s my wedding!

me: alrite… you guys decide

… night went on with yum seng (and tons of confetti), but no table to table photos. after everyone left,

groom: … it’s your dad’s wedding:P (jokingly)

way to go dude!:)

The Bali itinarary

2 weeks from now, i'll be in Bali, enjoying the sun, the sea and the company of friends:)

so, i'm tasked to draft up an itinarary of the trip. i've done abit of research, not too extensive, but i guess, there's so much i can do in one week. and i'm not about to plan a super tight schedule where i touch and go at places. tht's just not my kind of travelling. and the rough plan goes like that,

23rd Arrival. I will only arrive at night, so the rest of the guys can plan something in the afternoon when they arrive.

24th Beach activities (surfing, jetski..etc.)

25th Lembongan Island day tour (I think we can do snorkeling there if we want). I heard from friends that this place is beautiful… i think i can trust them:)

26th North bali (to the mountains, volcanic region) Jalituwih (world heritage, with plentiful of rice terraces), Kintamani, etc

27th Check out, go to next hotel. Since this is the last 2 days I'll be in Bali, I plan to stay in somewhere isolated, away from the masses. I think Waka Gangga looks really good, abit pricey, but I hope the rest will agree. Relax and perhaps travel to nearby areas (UBud, Tanah Lot.. etc)

28th The main party me behind!:~( I'll just stay around and relax before I head back to work on Monday

29th Leaves Bal.

making a return, back to bali

just a week ago, just when i was complaining to everyone else that i havent had a break for a loooooooooooooooooong time, kat send me an msn msg, asking if i'm keen in heading to bali over the hari raya weekend. it all seem so coincidental, as i was writing on another window with a friend about doing the same thing. i met kat and mirko at irene's wedding last year in surabaya. strangely, we met at 3 other different locations before finally meeting up in singapore in feb this year. first it was in surabaya for irene's wedding, then we met again in bali for the mini honeymoon. a week later, we met again in taipei for the wedding reception. 2 months later, i was posted to germany for work… and not surprises, we met up again while in germany.

well, this time, we're going to have a reunion in bali:) we're going to catch the waves at kuta and hopefully see a prettier bali in good weather. after a week of discussion on how we're gonna get there, how i can cope with my work and all… i finally booked the air tickets (before they all get fully booked up). because of the really late booking, i din manage to secure the dates with favourably timings, so i decided to extend my stay for 2 extra days after they leave… to perhaps spend some time with myself… do some soul synch-ing.

for now, i just need to figure out wht we will be doing there and… wht i'll be doing after everyone else have left. spend some time in lembongan alone? ubud? or uluwatu?:)