JAMES IS IN THE PHOTO YOU JUST HAVE TO ZOOM IN:
After spending our first week socialising we began our second week settling into what long stays are all about, ambling around finding new favourite coffee,drink and food places, walking different roads and organising our next ports of calls.
We are still trying to sell a property in Australia and having no interest in the one we have on the market at the moment have been trying to arrange the paperwork to list a second property with the view that which ever one sells we’ll keep the other.
Along with insurance renewals being sent to old no longer in use emails and the most frustrating to date problem, trying to arrange where we can pick up visas that we need for our second cruise we have realised why it’s essential to have these longer stays. You need to have time to get the nitty gritty of life sorted which believe it or not still happens even when you’re retired and living on the road.
( more on our visa hassles as they come to hand, let’s just say the cruise company have a lot to sort out due to bad planning and we may need to rethink our plans a little and at this stage we may be doing less of the trip than we thought).
You also want the time to enjoy where you are and make sure you’re getting the most of what this life of travelling is all about.
We’re really happy with our accommodation whilst cheap due to a monthly discount rate of 6,500,000.00 Indonesian rupiah ( around $650.00 Aus) we still have a pool, aircon, fan,hot water shower, water cooler,fridge, cleaning and breakfast daily.
We’ve been here long enough to see people come and go and although we get a few our age it’s mostly young couples or friends travelling together and they’re predominantly from Germany, The Netherlands, Poland and France.
Its nice chatting with them all and there’s a friendly vibe around the place. We often might spend an hour or so in the afternoon reading and dipping in the pool before having an afternoon nap before heading out for dinner.
FOOD AND DRINK AND LOCAL FLAVOUR INCLUDING PEOPLE:
We have had the same breakfast every day at our guesthouse, James scrambled eggs and I have an omelette. You get fruit and toast as well and there is the option of Indonesia breakfast but we keep that for lunch or dinner.
Not only do we like our Luhtu coffee shop on the waterfront where if we’re lucky we can get two of their four sun loungers with umbrellas and spend 2-4 hours there taking a dip and ordering something to eat or drink every hour or so to keep in their good books but their food and drinks are good value and tasty, ” win win for us”.
We have another couple of favourites, one called ‘The Owl’ a groovy cafe/restaurant just a few shop fronts from our accomodation where the coffee is good as is their chocolate milkshakes and food. We’ve been known to have coffee there in the morning turn up for lunch then backup for dinner.
We often share a meal so we’re not actually being as gutsy as it sounds.
PANCAKES at The Owl, $2.50
The great thing about having regular spots is they now recognise us and at The Owl they say “2 flat whites” each morning we pop in, and wave if we’re just walking by.
Same at the Whitesands bar where we’re at right now watching the NRL grand final ( maybe I’m not showing as much interest as I should! Nah no NSW teams) when we walk past they always wave and say hi. We usually book two seats for the games so they know who we are and today as soon as we turned up without having to say anything they said ” table six” where there is the sign James 2ppl.
At The Owl we have met a guy originally from Belgium an artist now living in Sri Lanka, and having to do a visa run decided it was time to revisit Bali. He’s well eccentric and often has feathers pierced through his ears but he’s quite the character and we’ve had a few laughs with him and been quite amazed at his recollection of world events etc.
The other night we went to a restaurant down the street as James fancied a Weiner schnitzel lol anyway we had a great night drinking half price cocktails after I made sure they made them with real alcohol and not local homemade, and singing along with the live singer/ guitarist who was calling out for requests.
Most nights though we eat at the local traditional markets where the meals cost between $1-$3 Australian dollars, unreal! The big Bintang beer is more expensive at $3.50!
I’m thrilled the stall selling Martabak an Indonesian favourite of mine is back at the market after the owners have had their holiday. It’s delicious and it’s great watching the owner get a ball of dough flatten it out then start whirling it and slapping it down till it resembles an extremely thin see through circle ( like pizza base ) which he then places into boiling hot oil in a flat bottom wok/pan and pours in a beaten egg and vegetables mixture before folding the outside of the dough over each other making a square which is deep fried until golden and sliced up into the delectable pieces of food heaven that it is.
There’s a great vibe and atmosphere here and as you sit at tables on plastic stools vying for a spot at the table with people from all over the world you usually get involved with a conversation with someone.
Every one is on holiday, jovial and we’ve been surprised at how many are here for a month or longer like ourselves.
Most are European here but we did chat with a couple of nice guys from Sydney the other night. They both were bored with their jobs and decided to chuck them in and are here for 2 months and then going onto East Timor. Then home to build a cottage on back of their property so they can rent both and maybe travel more.
Another older German couple are here for their 18 th visit to Sanur and are as sunbaked brown as you can get, something we don’t see much now in Australia but here we see people lying out in the sun for hours and we just marvel at how “sun educated” we’ve become in Australia. We shared a table and tapped glasses with a cheers and skol.
It’s great hearing other people’s stories and plans, it excites the wonder/ wanderlust in us and we’re gathering ideas and hints as we listen.
Someone we’ve met and looking forward to catching up with in her home near Bordeaux, France is Brigitte, we met at our guesthouse and when she moved onto Kuta we got an uber over and we walked along the beach, paddling our toes until we got to Seminyak where we enjoyed lunch together, laughing and sharing stories.
Brigitte is home now to her little dog Lilly whom she was missing.
Staying at our budget priced guest house allows us to take off for a few days and not worry about the cost of still paying for our base accommodation and that being the case we booked the D’camel fast ferry to Lembongan for a three night stay. What was great is they picked us up here and delivered us to our home stay on Lembongan as well and the reverse on our return.
We took a recommendation for Perdana homestay at Mushroom beach on Lembongan and were surprised when we went to pay that the price was cheaper than quoted on Booking.com, not only that but we had a free upgrade for the first night.
In the end it worked out at about $31 a night including breakfast.
It was raining on the first day so we had a walk around and just relaxed reading books.
There was a restaurant at homestay directly across from ours and we dined there the first night where we met a lovely couple Bert and Louise whom live in The Netherlands. We ran into them again the next night when coincidentally we all chose to eat at a restaurant overlooking the waterfront beach.
We had gone there with Lisa a Canadian we met at our homestay. She is travelling for six months on her own with friends and her husband joining her at different places along the way.
Our second day the weather turned sunny again and we hired a scooter from our accommodation and rode of exploring. We had a fantastic day riding around and over the yellow bridge to Ceningan where you can’t take a car so the scooter was brilliant. So many great spots and views.
Back over the bridge to Lembongan we travelled around the island going through Mangrove bay, circling back to our guesthouse.
On our third day we had a snorkelling trip organised through the guesthouse and off we went to snorkel with Manta Rays and then on to coral, infested with a gorgeous range of coloured fish.
I believe the third stop was just as great but I had succumbed to a bit of seasickness and didn’t feel up to swallowing anymore sea water as my snorkel wasn’t the best and part of the reason I wasn’t feeling so great.
Lesson to self: always carry some seasick tablets for just in case!
It didn’t spoil my day and the ride back was fine.
Those Manta Rays are MASSIVE!!!
What an experience this year swimming with stingrays in Bora Bora and Manta Rays in Indonesia.
After returning and having a little rest we went off again on the scooter finding more secluded or beautiful spots and we really enjoyed our time on Lembongan.
Unfortunately the weather wasn’t so great the day we were leaving and instead of spending a few hours on the beach it was only a short time we got but were surprised at how cool the sea temperature was at Mushroom beach compared to where we had gone snorkelling.
As arranged they picked us up from our homestay and it was time to wave the friendly staff goodbye and to reluctantly leave this little cutie and her sister.
Teddy and Beary are the cutest little mini Pomeranian puppies you’ve ever seen.
We arrived back “home” to Sanur and after a shower headed off for a cocktail at The Glasshouse then went off to book a stone massage, as they could fit us in then we decided why not! Cannot highly recommend this place enough Sanctuary spa in Sanur. Very professional and great experience each time.
We have booked in for a facial each today ( Wednesday 11th October) our last full day here in Bali.
After our massage we floated off to the market for dinner.
Today we revisited out favourite Owl Cafe and had a manicure for James and a manicure and pedicure for myself on way back to our little home.
We have our facials in a couple of hours so have been catching up on office work for James and my blog for me.
I’ve also coloured my regrowth this morning and sewn up the edge of my Panama hat which was coming adrift… “buy a Panama hat”they said, “it will last a lifetime” they said haha two months later I’m already repairing it.
What can I say! We’ve had a great time again in Bali and if we didn’t have more adventures planned would be a sad couple leaving tomorrow.
Instead we’re very excited to see our family in South Korea.
Yay the dream keeps unfolding.
You’ve heard of the yellow brick road, below is our trip over the yellow bridge.