Goodbye India, hello Indonesia!

January 28, 2013 by Karen

Goodbye India, hello Indonesia!
“It is impossible not to be astonished by India. Nowhere on Earth does humanity present itself in such a dizzying, creative burst of cultures and religions, races and tongues…..Perhaps the only thing more difficult than to be indifferent to India would be to describe or understand India completely.”
Rough guide to India
As much as we love India, after forty-nine days there it was time to get ready to leave. We enjoyed two more nights in Kolkata before saying goodbye.

We even bumped into an old friend!

We stayed at the gorgeous Fairlawn Hotel where the eccentric 92 year old owner told Nick behind her hand that she was looking for a toyboy! She was quite a character!

The very over the top Christmas decorations!
We loved it there! It was like visiting grandma’s house!
Our lovely room!
The view from our window down to the jewellery market.
We enjoyed wandering around the local area near Sudder Street.
And visiting the markets.

After India we were planning to go to either Sri Lanka or Myanmar but decided we wanted to end our year somewhere a little more relaxing, where the travelling would be easier. We settled on Indonesia and after a one night stop over in Kuala Lumpa we landed in Denpasar. We caught a taxi straight to Ubud where we spent three nights in a great villa we found on Airbnb.

We tried out the fish spa on our hands before letting them nibble away at the dead skin on our feet!
It was strangely relaxing as long as I did not look down.
This macaw decided to randomly land on Nick’s shoulder as we were walking down the street. I think he thought Nick’s hair was his nest!
We saw this poster outside the supermarket and as Gili Air was somewhere we wanted to go we checked the retreat out on line before booking.
New Year’s day was very wet and I was the unlucky one who had wear the poncho to protect the bag containing all our worldly goods. Yes I was as impressed as I look! Nick’s head could not fit through the hole! What a fashion statement I was making at the start of 2013!!!
We loved this row of mossy Buddahs in the main street.
On day four we moved to Ben’s Homestay in a family compound closer to the centre. It was cheap, beautiful and probably the cleanest place we have stayed in all year.
A stunning sunset from our verandah!
We booked a one day cycling tour to escape the madness of Ubud and to see the countryside.
View from our breakfast spot.
The clouds threatened throughout the whole tour but we managed to stay dry!
This guy was thrilled when I asked If I could take his photo.
Anyone who has been to Ubud recently will know how annoying it is to be asked if you want a taxi every two steps. We loved this guy’s different approach and decided to get him to take us out to The Green School.

He showed us all of his previous advertising tricks!

We could see why some of them had not worked but loved the fact he was willing to try out new ideas.
And he could do more than drive a taxi as well!
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9MDTxz9qlI&w=500&h=305]
The tour of the Green school lasted for an hour.
Whilst the open air buildings and furniture were absolutely beautiful, I was left with a lot more questions about the quality of the the education. Perhaps I should return when it is not school holidays.
We decided to do something cultural so I took a Balinese cooking course. It started with a trip to the local market.
The course was very hands on.
In the end we made six dishes.
Balinese soup
Chicken satay sticks, corn fritters and tempura
Nasi goring and sticky rice pudding!
Nick did a full day wood carving course. The teacher was carving his own new creation while helping Nick with his.
The view from his lunch spot.
The beginning of his carving with a completed version just behind it..

These two reminded us of our cats Pudda and Rangy!

“The world’s fourth most populace country – 240 million and counting – is a sultry kaleidoscope that runs along the equator for 5000km. It may well be the last great adventure on Earth. From the western tip of Sumatra to the eastern edge of Papua is a nation that defies homogenisation. A land of so many cultures, peoples, animals, customs, plants, features, artworks and foods that it is like 100 countries melded into one (or is it 200?).”

Lonely Planet Indonesia

Comments

  1. Elissa McAuliffe says:

    So jealous you went to the green school

    How do I contact you? Your chilekaz doesn’t seem to be working….

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