“I didn’t like Bali!” Now before you judge me, I was pregnant in Bali, and I spent a great deal of time throwing up, unable to eat and unable to stand the heat or do many activities. Marcin always says, “you didn’t hate Bali, you were pregnant in Bali!” Looking back he is right, I was upset that I couldn’t enjoy this incredible and culturally rich country. There was so much to see and do, so much culture to experience and so much food to enjoy. As I was so ill, I missed out on much of this, as did Marcin and thus we missed the full experience of this country. (Henry if you are reading this – it was all worth it and I would do it again just for you!)

We arrived in Bali Denpasar Airport and were ushered into one of the longest customs lines I have ever seen. Facing this excruciatingly long line, with bouts of nausea in wicked heat, we decided to attempt something we heard of. We gave money to a customs agent (a nice word for “bribed” a customs agent), who promptly escorted us past the line-up, stamped our passports without question and off we went.

Our hotel sent a car and we began our journey to Ubud, the place made famous from “Eat, Pray, Love”. Subsequently, the town was crawling with women in their 40’s and 50’s trying to find themselves, as well as many, many, yoga enthusiast. Our hotel was nice, but new, so things were not running as smoothly as they good – our first room had a resident rat that ran about at night and crapped everywhere. Once they moved us to a new room, we slept much better.

We visited many temples with our hotel driver, who was lovely, but unable to tell us much about what we were seeing as he could not speak English. Marcin was able to do some diving, which worried me to know end, however he returned safely and was able to dive in a shipwreck.  We were also able to enjoy the sights and sounds of Ubud – Marcin enjoyed the local cuisine and beer, while I enjoyed water and digestive cookies!  As always, we made a top ten list of our trip to Bali.

Top ten things we learned in Bali

  1. Plunging through the sidewalk into a dirty river is a real possibility
  2. Every meal is a leap of faith
  3. Animal excrement can make a surprisingly good cup of coffee
  4. You can fit 4 adults on a scooter
  5. Who says you cannot have rice for breakfast, or every meal for that matter
  6. Mass chaos on the road can be surprisingly safe when everyone is afraid
  7. Dogs move for no man, women, child or car for that matter
  8. Sales people actually yell at you if you show interest and then buy nothing…. It’s best to be indifferent from the get-go
  9. Bali belly is all too real
  10. Bali is ground zero for middle age women trying to find themselves

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