After weeks of counting down and dreaming about exotic Indonesia, I finally arrived in Bali. I loved getting out of the airplane and smelling that South East Asian summer and feeling the warmth on my skin. Ok true it’s not that different from Xiamen but still… It’s holiday so it feels a bit different.
I was ready to enjoy an afternoon in Bali and then have a walk along the beach with some furniture shopping in Seminyak. But… the long long long queue at Bali airport decided differently, luckily I met some fun fellow Belgians who were queuing up in front of me. Instead I arrived at the hotel just around sunset and the last thing I felt like was going shopping so instead I went for a walk along the beach. I found my way to the water through the small labyrinth of alleys in Petitenget, there are so many cute little hotels along the way that I started to feel hotel envy. It’s not like my hotel was a total dump and considering it was cheap as chips it wasn’t bad at all but there were definitely a lot of nicer places.
After a short walk I passed by the temple before my toes were touching the sand. I was so excited to be in Bali! It was a beautiful sunset and felt like the perfect start of a great holiday. There were quite a few people walking their dogs on the beach, kids playing in the water, foreigners jogging and doing yoga in the sand. It all felt so relaxing. Until I arrived closer to Kuta… The vibe totally changed and it all became quite wild, not peaceful at all and actually quite tacky. I heard about Kuta’s reputation so at my first glimpse of it, I decided to turn around and find my way to get a bite to eat somewhere back in Petitenget.
I saw many cute local warungs to eat but there was one that really caught my eye. It was actually quite hard to miss considering all the smoke that came from the place but when I looked passed the smoke it was full of people, much more than the other places and the bamboo construction looked very charming and laid back. I saw some other travelers sitting there all by themselves and also one young-looking German boy. He actually looked quite uneasy, like he really wanted to talk to someone but wasn’t quite sure how to start a conversation. He was actually quite cute in a boyish kind of way with his rosy cheeks, fresh out of high school and ready for his big adventure. When it turned out we had the same camera, the ice was broken… Somewhat… He still remained very shy. This tiny ‘Warung Eny’ was my first real encounter with Indonesian food so I decided to go for fish barbecued in banana leaf, a side of water spinach (I love this one! We also have it in China where it’s stirfried with garlic but here they also add coconut) and a fresh young coconut to drink. Looked so delicious and huge! Honestly that was the largest coconut I’ve ever seen there was probably between 2-3 liters of coconut water in there. When my bbq fish arrived I was a little disappointed to see that it was canned tuna, would have been nice to have some fresh fish but it did taste delicious! Lots of lemongrass and chili, with the bbq flavor was definitely a hit for me.
I had to get up really early that morning to catch my flight so I was quite tired after dinner and I really looked forward to have a Balinese massage. On the way to the hotel we (yes the German kid wanted to come for a massage since he never had one) passed this really nice looking place called ‘L’Spa’. They gave us this very tasty tea when we were going through the menu. It was lemongrass with cinnamon and sugar (yes most drinks in Indonesia turned out to be really sweet)! Thinking about it now makes me want to make it at home tonight. Anyway I would really recommend this place… the massage was absolutely amazing and their facilities are 5 star. They even have a swimming pool! After the massage it was time to part ways with the German kid, return to my hotel, have a good night sleep before having to get up at 6 am the next morning to head to Gili Air where I would finally see my friend Joeri again!