When the butterflies in your stomach become elephants with wings you know you’re in for something special… and so it was – my 4 days in Ubud, solo.
I caught the 5.30pm flight with Jetstar from Sydney with carry on only – best thing ever! We land & disembark & sail through immigration. I say “see you suckers” as I just walk directly past the luggage carousel, through customs & security and out into my Bali!
That sea of faces is the best isn’t it? My driver, G’day takes my bag & leads me out into the cempaka & jet fuel scented air – I love you Bali, it’s so great to be back!
Off we go & about 90 mins later I’m checking into my home for the next 4 nights, The Bisma Cottages on Jalan Bisma, Ubud. I hardly sleep despite being completely cream crackered but do manage to drift off in my super comfy bed with its crisp linen.
It stormed overnight & I awake to the sounds of hujan falling onto big, fat tropical leaves.
It’s 6.30am but I’m ready for my day to begin so I throw on some clothes and almost skip along the hotel path to Jalan Bisma. The sun is coming through the grey clouds & the rice paddy fields are stunning.
I wander down gangs & explore driveways to my heart’s content.
Working my way north to Jl Raya Ubud before heading back to the hotel for the best pisang pancakes, bright green with pandan leaf, oh & a gorgeous cup of Bali kopi.
I’m sitting there relaxing & pinching myself as the girl comes along to do the offerings. Right there in front of me she places the sari canang down & does her thing with her hand before looking up & giving me her gorgeous smile. I learnt this trip that the offerings on the street & doorways are to ward of bad spirits, which the offerings placed on the temples are a gift for the Gods.
The sun is drying up all the rain so I head out again, this time I walk south on Jl Bisma, across a bridge & through a narrow gang to Jl Monkey Forest. It’s easy to walk & there are plenty of scooters but it’s too narrow for cars. I pop up just before the Monkey Forest and walk north to the Ubud markets for a looks see.
The rain has turned the market floor to a mud pit! So slippery! I loiter by the Pura, trying to catch a glimpse of the magic that goes on within. Ladies are in there placing their offerings, the incense makes the air all smokey & exotic & I smile my head off like a crazy person but I can’t help it, I’m so happy.
I wander here & there, trying out my new Bahasa Indonesia. Thankfully the couple of market ladies I talk too also want to try out the Bahasa Ingris so it’s a lot of fun with plenty of smiling.
I head west along Jl Raya Ubud and drop into Pura Saraswati for another look (I was only just here on my last day of the trip in May but something drew me back). It’s calm & very peaceful so I sit awhile & just take it all in.
Right, back down Jl Bisma to my room then a bit of a swim & an explore of the hotel grounds.
Hungry now I leg it down to The Tropical Garden restaurant on Monkey Forest Road. I’ve my heart set on a Nasi Campur & small Bintang somewhere overlooking the rice paddies & this place ticks all boxes. “Boleh saya minta Nasi Campur dan small Bintang?” The lovely waitress replies in Bahasa Indonesian but my grasp on Indonesian is so limited I haven’t a clue what she said! Lol, so embarrassing as my instant reaction is “sorry, what did you say?” She smiles & repeats in English, thankfully! My lunch is delicious.
I head back to the hotel for a rest as I’m very weary & have a big afternoon & evening planned so take a delicious nap.