Saturday, 22 June 2013

Bali - June 2013 Day 6 HNR - Finding Nemo

Bali - June 2013 Day 6 HNR - Finding Nemo

Its raining. And, I mean pouring down. After waking up to what I thought were shotgun rounds going off around 2am, I heard distant rumbling most of the night, that I put down to either storms a way off, or Mt Agung about ready to blow its top after a 48 year Hiatus. As it turned out, it was the lesser of the two evils, just rain.

Karin and Hugo were sitting outside their room, and mentioned the gun shots. Karin had put into google “ gunshots last night in Seminyak” and an article popped up about 5 terrorists getting shot after plotting bombs in 3 tourist locations. I wish she had read the date of the article out though..... 2010 ! So I raced over to the computer and Ipad and madly started looking at the online news agencies and trying to google what sized body armor I should be buying. As it turned out, there were no shootings, and it was probably just some fireworks - PHEW !

Scotty offered to make us all breakfast this morning. Bacon, eggs, pancakes. He did a stirling job of recreating the ones we had at Madu a couple of days ago too. The best thing is, as he was cooking, the staff here at the Villa were washing up around him. He had a grin from ear to ear.
We spent the morning sittting around the villa relaxing. 4 of us booked massages at 10am, and the same girls from day 1 came back to the villa and massaged us on the huge daybed. I am not a big fan of massages, but this was absolutely brilliant. I only got a medium one, but its the best I have ever had, $13 with a $2 tip, in our villa. Yes please, more of that this week for sure.

Litsa and I and Scott and Karen had booked Bali Dolphins about a month ago online. Yesterday, one of the staff came to our villa, collected the cash, as promised and at 12.30 today another staff member came and collected us. If you are considering booking. DO IT. Also don’t be afraid about transferring money to their account if they ask. They are legit. If you do the ‘pickup cash the day before’ method, don’t use AUS$ as they will sting you on the exchange. The official rates about 9400 and we got 9000 from the lady who got the cash. The trip to Benoa Harbour took around 30 mins and we, along with around 30 others signed in, and waited for our boat ride to the pens. The trip across by skinny long boat takes about 3 -4 minutes. On this day, the weather looked ominous, with dark dark rain squalls off in the distance heading our way. You can take your own camera across, so do this, but get a waterproof bag for it, as there is limited cover at the pens. Once split into groups of 6 , you hop into the pen with your trainer and dolphin. A platform is submerged about stomach deep. The water is warm, and relatively clear, but not crystal. A small army of fish swim around you, waiting for the bits of extra food that break off when you feed the Dolphins. NEMO was our Dolphin. A 5 year old 70 kilo female, who is in top condition.
Benoa Harbour

Litsa and I and NEMO

Bali Massage for NEMO

Does this Dolphin look happy ?

Interacting with the Dolphins is truly an amazing experience. From kissing, to cuddling, feeding and simply watching Nemo. I was watching Litsas face a lot of the time we were in the pool. and she was lit up like a little kid. Thats what they do to you..... these animals are so smart and so sentient, that you know they are having as much fun as we are. Sure, Nemo gets 10 kilos of fish to eat a day, but as we left, other dolphins in their pens were jumping around and playing completely naturally.
We got some amazing photos thanks to one of the staff who was running around the whole time with my camera. Make sure you tip these guys well if they do a great job. We got one aweome photo of Litsa and I holding Nemo while she opened her mouth and sang, that is now our new Facebook photo and will probably get blown up to adorn a photo frame in the house ( far away from the print that Litsa bought on the beach yesterday).

I have read lots of positive reports from Bali Dolphins. I can only add one more. This was the highlight of the trip so far for us.

The trip back to the Villa was not so much fun. It took us just on an hour. The road from Benoa to the big roundabout was chockers, and then up Sunset to Seminyak and then... all through Seminyak. I just wanted to get back and wash the salt off and have a beer around the pool and show the guys the photos and videos of Nemo :)

We set off around 6ish to Taco Beach Grill for Mexican. One of my favourite places, that I discovered last trip. We booked for 8, and probably half the crew liked it, the rest not as much. Bob, the owner, greeted me warmly like old friends. The place is still small, but the staff move with a faster more determined pace these days. You can see the business has grown in the past 12 months. The menu has also expanded, and some of the starters represent more interesting, USA centric, things, like Buffalo wings and KFC Chicken. We had the Nachos to start, which were awesome, the Chilli Chorizo Fries (fantastic) and the KFC Chicken and the Buffalo wings. The chicken was OK, not outstanding, but interesting to try. OH, we also had the chilli poppers, which I loved. Stuffed chillis oozing gooey Mozarella in a fried panko breadcrumb..... what could be wrong with that? Mains were an assortment of the Burritos and soft and hard shell Tacos that they are famous for. I stupidly ordered 4 tacos, and only managed to eat 3, they seemed to have grown in size in the last year too. Litsa loved her Texas beef burrito with its smokey BBQ sauce, but she too, couldnt eat it all. For me, its still true true Mexican food. Bob even makes the Margaritas exactly like I had when in Mexico, slightly more sour than the Tex-Mex version. After dinner, Bob wandered in and gave me a gift of a Taco Beach T-Shirt. Now I am a certified Emergency Margarita Technician ! Bobs one of those great Ex-Pat characters you meet in Bali who give your holiday just that little bit more zaniness !

Taco beach grill

Litsas Burrito and Margarita !

After dinner, and I am ready to burst on beer and food, we ride the scooters down to Legian to see if Merry Leather is open. Karen and Litsa both want leather goods made. of course at 8pm they are closed. But at least we found it. Onto BILLYS for a drink is the call.
Garlic lane, is more famous as the home of Ketuts fixed price shop and Miss Debbies. But it also houses BILLYS. A bar, unlike most of the others nearby, that actually FULL of people. It looks like half of Australia is here tonight. The band are great, they actually sing the correct words, and are in tune. The drink prices are also reasonable for a bar.
I stayed for half a beer. My gurgling was become a little bit too volcanic for my liking, so I decided to hop onto Scoopy and go home leaving the other 7 to their mayhem.
Once home. I knocked myself out with a sleeping tablet and turned the aircon on, pulled the mozzie net around the King bed and BOOOM.. slept..

Drinks at Billys in Garlic Lane

Litsa found 'DOBBIE' The Bali House Elf !
Too many shots I think !!!


Around 10.30pm (apparently)

I heard the bedroom door open, saw a bunch of camera and video camera lights go on and.......


They had put firecrackers inside a huge cooking pot and put them in my bedroom.

Litsa then, threw herself on me, not realising I was extremely groggy from the sleeping tablet, and proceeded to tell me how much she loved me. Someones been feeding my wife shots by the looks of it !
After a while, with my complete lack of response, except for a snarl and a reminder that I have a long memory, they left me alone. I put my earplugs in, and went back to sleep.
Apparently, after that, they swam, laughed and then crashed within an hour.
All I am saying is.... I am writing this feeling very chipper - they all look like crap :)


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