Volunteering in Bali part 2

23rd – 25th October

The next few days were not as eventful as the past few, it was mainly doing the farm work in the morning. Digging up trenches and pulling up weeds. Absolutely sweating my ass of for a couple of hours and feeling the most disgusting I have ever felt in my life haha but it was good.

 

Then in the afternoon we went for some food and also a walk around the market in the centre of Ubud, although typical Asia and its heavy rain, the shopping got cut short due to the rain ahhh well I guess more food and beer is in order instead then hey? So I tried fried ice cream for the first time and omg what a taste sensation that was.

One of the days Manu showed us to a place he had been a few times for lunch which was actually a Sumatran restaurant and the food was delicious. It was a sort of buffet place where all the food was out on show but the people who worked there walked around with your plate and you point at the things you want. I also discovered the Bali dish Cap Cay which became my staple food for the rest of my time in Bali, it is delicious, it’s basically like a vegetable stew and then you can have it with rice or without.

On the 25th when we got back from dinner Chakra and some of his friends were sat around outside his house playing guitar and singing, practicing for a wedding the following day which he said he wanted to take us too….wait….what am I supposed to wear to a Balinese wedding? Think I may need to go shopping!!

 

26th – October

We all went to the farm in the morning as usual to continue with building the chicken house and digging up the weeds and grass, feeding the pigs etc.

Then we went back to the homestay and had a bit of a rest and then me and Ruby went into the centre as we both needed to buy something to wear for the evening and I needed to get my Christmas presents for everyone back home.

We did lots of walking around the markets and the shops and eventually we both got everything we needed, and thought we would reward ourselves by going to the coconut shop where they have homemade coconut ice cream and you can have it on top of smoothies or in fruit salads and omg it is so flipping good!! I went for the fruit salad and muesli option which was delicious.

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Once we had finished the coconut delightfulness we jumped in a cab back to the homestay to get ready for the wedding that evening, I had bought a long wrap around skirt and a white lacy top which covered my shoulders.

We walked to the wedding as we knew we would all be drinking and thought it best not to ride the bikes even though there are no laws there about drink driving but for safety reasons we thought it best haha.

On the way there we walked down little back streets and there were so many dogs barking their heads off at us but we were with chakra so they didn’t really approach us which was good even though I was still scared and thinking they would smell my fear and try to kill me.

When we got to the wedding we walked through an archway into the house area and we were greeted by some of the women who I presume to be bridesmaids and they were offering us some snacks and drinks, we then went and sat down with chakra and started drinking Teak, the way you usually drink it is that you have a small glass and a jug and you pour a glass for the person sitting next to you, they then drink it or really down it like a shot and then pour the next person a glass. So there is usually only one glass between large groups of people.

Not long after we sat down chakra started telling us more of his stories. We were discussing religion and how he was not religious but his wife is very religious and wondered if it was ever a problem, he then told us that it was a problem in the past and that they were married before and actually separated for 7 years due to their disagreements in religion, but after 7 years had passed and chakra had been working in other countries he came back to Bali and met his wife again and the rekindled their relationship and both now agree to disagree but also accept each other’s views on the world which I think is great. Just because one person believes in something doesn’t mean everyone else in the world has to believe that too.

Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs I think and we shouldn’t judge others on what they believe in……well I say that apart from these bloody idiots who believe they need to blow people up or themselves because of religion…..those idiots can FUCK RIGHT OFF!! Blow yourself up and all the others who believe the same but leave us normal and sane people to enjoy life please you bastards!

Ok sorry about that….rant over…..back to the wedding where was i? Haha

So we were drinking the Teak and then chakra said that some erotic dancing was about to happen out the front and Manu’s eyes lit up and off he went outside and of course we followed, what was this erotic dancing going to be? I thought Balinese women were very reserved are they really going to start doing a strip tease now?

Everyone sat around on the walls and on the floor and out came a woman dressed in a sarong and a big headpiece and started dancing around to the music the men were playing on their drums behind her, she then chooses a man from the crowd and he then has to show off his dancing skills to her, and then she chooses someone else to dance with so not so erotic dancing after all but erotic for Bali I suppose. The funniest part of all this was that Manu got chosen to go up and dance with her and he was very excited about this, unfortunately I did record it all but the camera on the iPhone 6 for recording is absolutely rubbish so you can’t see a single thing. – I need a new phone!!

After the erotic dancing we went back inside and had some food and then went to watch Chakra and his band playing and singing all different types of songs, me and Manu were still drinking Teak and dancing around listening to him.

It got to around midnight and we all decided to leave as we did need to be up in the morning for the farm work, so we all left besides chakra and started walking back to the homestay but this time we did not have his protection against the big group of dogs so I was panicking as they were barking so loud at us and following us and I was thinking omg they can smell my fear they are going to kill me which made me even more scared which made me think they could smell me even more, luckily no one got attacked by the dogs and we all made it home safe and sound.

27th October

I woke up the morning after the wedding with such a headache and spent the whole day in bed watching fear the walking dead and also deciding on my plans for the next few weeks, I was quickly running out of money and knew that I would be needing it for my return to Australia in January so I decided that I wanted to go home a bit earlier than I was planning on.

My amazing dad said that he wanted to buy me a scuba dive course for Christmas as I had already done my first course the open water scuba diver I wanted to continue with my learning so I decided that I would do the next course in line which was the advanced course.

I spent ages researching places I could go and eventually settled on the Gili Islands just off Bali. I ended up booking a package with a hotel as it was so much easier than booking everything individually…I will go more into that in the next post about the scuba course.

After a busy day planning my next few weeks I took myself for a Mexican dinner at a place called taco casa and it was delicious! – I do talk about food a lot don’t I! But I love it! Haha

28th – October

The next day we went and did the usual farm work in the morning and then in the afternoon we decided that we would go and explore some places nearby that ruby had found online, so we settled on going for lunch in the rice fields.

We all jumped on the bikes and went off to find this mystery place and it was quite hard to find…thank god for google maps because the roads we had to drive up and down didn’t look like roads at all, more like little alleyways to nothing, but once we got through them we were on a thin little lane that goes through the rice fields and had lots of cafes and retreats, how on earth people actually manage to get to these retreats with all their luggage I will never know because you could just about fit a bike down the path.

We settled on the cheapest café and all went and lay on the pillows and looked out to the rice fields, got our self some food and a coconut to drink and Manu decided that he would try to jump up the wall to the café rather than climbing the 5 steps to his right, which made us all laugh….ahhh Manu such a funny chap!

29th – October

So this was the last day of farm work as we had Sundays off and I was leaving on the Monday. So we all went and did our farm work in the morning and the evening and then chakra said he wanted to take us to a party.

We all got on the bikes and followed him to a temple where there were lots of people sat on the floor singing or more so chanting to Krishna, chakra said that we should leave because it wasn’t a party if there was no food or alcohol, I like his thinking.

We walked around by the temple which is also a hotel with lots of cabins all the way down hundreds of steps to the river, it was really nice.

After we had walked down the hundreds of steps we then had to get back up the hundreds of steps and my legs and butt were killing me after that but I made it….just about.

We went back to the homestay after the disappointing party and chilled there for a bit until we were all ready to go to Bali Bohemia which is a café/bar that has live music, as soon as we were about to leave in typical Asia style started pouring it down and the little pathway around the homestay quickly became a stream.

We waited for around 30mins and it was still raining, but we all decided to put our raincoats on and go to the bar anyway as it was our last proper night together.

When we got there the band were not playing, but setting up still and they didn’t end up starting for another couple of hours due to the rain one of their band mates had not arrived yet. While we waited we ordered food and some drinks.

I discovered the poor man’s mojito which was made with Arak and it was delicious, the band eventually came on and they were really good, they were an African band and I loved the music. I do love this about travelling, that you get introduced to lots of different types of music from different cultures that you would not normally listen too.

30th October

It was my last day with everyone and when I woke up and went over to the homestay Jess had realised that her visa was going to run out and that she needed to get it extended immediately so we were helping her get all her things together for it.

We went for lunch and then into the centre of Ubud to get some of her printing done and once all of that was done we all decided that we would go to some waterfalls, so we got on the bikes and started riding to where we thought the waterfalls were, turns out we went the wrong way but im pretty happy we did because we ended up at Tegalalang rice fields which were really beautiful, so we decided to stop and have a coffee at one of the cafes there.

We then went back to the homestay and I had to go and pack up all my stuff ready to move on in the morning, god my backpack is so full now I seriously need to ditch some stuff!!

Then it was Cap Cay time and then a pretty early night ready for tomorrow.

I had such a good time staying at Chakras and especially with the other volunteers. It was my first work away experience and I have to say it was a great one. I am really going to miss everyone I met, such is the way of a traveller! Always meeting amazing people and then having to go separate ways but I always know I will meet more of these amazing people along my journey which is a nice thing to know.

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