Summer Solstice in Bali

Yes, 21 December — now the days start getting shorter. Brrrr! Not long to winter.
Ha! Is this crazy weather or what? So dry in Perth that we’re asking for shorter showers and sprinkler bans. Devastating floods in Carnarvon, “just up the road”. Snow in southern NSW – at Xmas?? Floods all over the eastern states. Wild storms and huge rains in Bali (last week). Global warming, anyone?

Quite a pleasant day today. Lots of rain, but I love it. Thunder, lightning, great. Quite cool, only 28C or so, I’d guess.

I took the hotel shuttle over to Kuta and I was the only passenger. It seems strange that the hotel’s near full, yet I’m the only one around a lot of the time. I’ve just had dinner in the restaurant and apart from one other Indo guy who left soon after I arrived, I was the only customer. Huh?

Poor old Indos. It was the classic failure again. I ordered Bruschetta again (I like it and I think the tomato, olive oil and garlic is good for me) as the appetiser, and a Bintang, to be followed by Nasi Goreng Seafood.

So what happens? The Nasi Goreng arrives first, followed about 3 mins later by the Bruschetta.

This happens so often. They can’t seem to grasp the idea of the order of dishes, even though the menu says Appetisers. It seems trivial but it spoilt the meal for me. The Nasi Goreng was hot and spicy, but the mixture with the Bruschetta was just wrong. I was going to complain/explain, but the waiter was so friendly that I just didn’t have the heart.

Anyway, there was a pianist and singer there just for me, so I had to show appreciation. But in the middle of the meal, she decided she needed to do the “Check, one, two” PA routine. Not just once, but over and over again for 3 minutes or more. Pleeeease.

Gamelan orchestra jamming, 1985

I”m watching and listening to CNN at the moment, with the Aussie female newsreader. Analogue CRT TV seems so awful now after digital that I can hardly bear it. But I’ve just bought some DVDs (Love actually – Hugh Grant; Krakatoa, The Last days; Earth 2100; Green Zone; Centurion) so I don’t need to watch rubbish TV. I can watch rubbish DVDs instead.

I hope to talk to a real estate agency in Sanur tomorrow to see what’s available in long term rentals and what the process would be. I’ve had a substantial redraw facility on my CBA account for years and never actually used it before. It seems to me that if it came down to it, I could quite feasibly take out a 12 month lease on the spot just by using my ATM card. I’m not going to be rash, but anything seems possible these days with international and internet banking.

On that theme, I was at the computer about 6pm this evening and an email came in from Expedia.com confirming a hotel booking. Five or ten minutes later, my mobile phone rang and it was the Police & Nurses Credit Society credit card fraud officer in Perth asking me to verify this transaction! How about that? I was very happy to let him know I’m in Bali and thanked him very much for being so on the ball. Wow.

I was also at the hotel desk today and chatting to a guy I think must have been the manager. He seemed to know everything anyway. I said I’ve brought wire cables and padlocks to tie things down in the room for security, but the furniture in the room just doesn’t allow it. There are no holes for me to thread the cables through – it’s all so modern, smooth panels etc. He seemed bemused but said, just trust the heavy door locks. And use the room safe. Yeah, OK, but my camera bag won’t fit, nor will my laptop. Oh well.

Now for a DVD. Let’s see what a $4 HD DVD looks like on my BluRay drive.

Malam.

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