Saturday, 23 October 2010

This week all thoughts are with Petra, who had to go back home for a short time...looking forward to having you back soon Petra! X
It’s been another hard week at school. I am continuing to practice with local’s, who, as our vocabulary grows, take it upon themselves to develop our speaking skills - in other words, everyone is a teacher! I think this is really cool because it means they are proud of their language and they are happy for foreigners to become more a part of their community. I hope I pick up the same vibe on Flores, and my colleagues at work want to talk to me as much!
I have started a list of interesting things I have seen people on motorbikes carry. I wish i had pictures but I only see these people when I am travelling on my bike so never get to my camera quickly enough. You can get whole shops on bikes, we have even seen one with a frame attached to the back dangling little bags of water with fish in them going around! But to make the list, it requires one handed driving - one driver, and something in their hand. So, the last one I saw was a guy pulling a wheelie bin along beside him. Before that it was a guy with a steel pipe and my favourite, and the one that inspired the list was a guy, already in a wetsuit travelling up a street near where I stay carrying a harpoon! How do they change gear? Or accelerate?!?!?! Are they riding automatics to be able to do this? And in the traffic?? I never fail to be surprised here!
We attended a music event showcasing young alternative talent which was interesting. IT was organised by a friend of the manager at VSO, who set up a charity to help kids find opportunities in music. There was no lack of talent, some good voices and guitarists, however there was a shortage of originality...think Jack Johnston or his female equivalent. They all looked the part, with very cool haircuts, skinny jeans, lumberjack shirts!
Yesterday, Paul, Sarah and I took a boat trip to neighbouring Lombogan Island. Unfortunately, our rainy season has started (hope this helps those in Aberdeen surprised by snow earlier in the week feel a bit consoled!) so the sea was a little choppy and most people got pretty sea sick. Disaster! Glad to say I didn’t have the problem of puking my way across the Indian Ocean however, it made it a bit of a quiet affair. When we got there we did a bit of snorkelling, watched some surfing, played in a pool with the fastest slide ever and took a glass bottom boat. It was a really nice day and nice to see another place. Exploring my new home and its culture really is one of the reasons I came here so I’m squeezing in as much as I can..... (does looking at fish count as culture?)
And I’ve started my yoga, which is brilliant. I brought my Bikram yoga book and when I’ve had a bit of time on my hands I do that. No need for a heated room here as I sweat like crazy even when its evening here so it’s ideal to get the best out of that yoga! It takes an hour and a half and I’m planning to do it regularly in Flores.  
We are over the half way mark in Bali and my thoughts are turning to work. I am really excited about starting up, especially after a really positive meeting with VSO to get an update on my role. But for now, I will channel this motivation for language school!!!
A baby monkey at the Monkey Temple, Ubud

Me deep in the jungle....or rather in the Monkey Temple

Some girls getting dressed in traditional Balinese costume for their equivalent of Guiness World Records. They were part of the 1,500 who gathered to take the top spot for most Balinese Women in tradional dress at the same place. Makes me remember how much I wanted to be in that Glasgow can can!

Cute wee dancers on stage at the Nusa Dua festival

2 seconds before a baby was lying underneath the raised foot - too slow!

Nusa Dua beach, so gorgeous I didnt notice until we walked back the way there was another beach to my right!

The stairs to a Hindu monument...I ran all the way up!

The prize at the top, a pretty huge statue!

Our yaht for the day, ah bliss!

Can you make out the coral through the window of the glass bottomed boat? AMAaaaaazing!

You really need to click on this one to make it big, but its one of the beaches on Lombogan Island

All aboard! My shipmates for the trip to Lombongan
Til next posting, take care! xx

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