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...two travellers in search of the world's wildlife

27 January 2011

Half way in

26th January 2011

A pessimist might say we’ve already finished half our travels, but I’m an optimist so we still have half our travels to go.

Today we drove out to Tirta Gangga in the east of the island with grandma, Putu and her baby son. We were visiting Putu’s family, something she hasn’t done since the kid was born, so there was plenty of gratitude. Visiting a Balinese village that isn’t even on a trek route or renowned for its wood-carving is probably something very few tourists get to do. My impressions are of rustic buildings, plenty of animals and truly awful teeth. And rain, because it rained on and off all day.

It rained when we left them all chatting and went for a drive down random lanes. We found a place where they grow orchids in vast profusion, which we were shown around since we expressed some curiosity. Later we picked up grandma and Putu, then stopped to visit the water palace of Tirta Gangga in the rain. It’s a very aesthetically appealing garden, and no doubt looks more splendid still under sunny skies. On a positive note we did have it mostly to ourselves.

This evening we went out for a meal to celebrate our six month mark. The restaurant is called Bumbu Bali, it’s in one of the swish resort areas and is recommended for its authentic Balinese dishes. I have to say that everything was beautifully presented and very delicious. Best Dish award goes to extremely tender slices of ox tongue braised in a sweet and deep sauce flavoured with nutmeg. Overall, though, it would be fair to say we both prefer the stronger and more in-the-face flavour of those same Balinese dishes bought cheap from local warungs (street cafes).

Hm. I must not be dishonest. In fact we simply decided to go out for a meal this evening. I had no idea that tonight was our six month mark until just a minute ago!

So now it’s 11PM and very unusually the TV is on in grandma’s house (though no-one is watching). We’ve watched very little TV as we’ve travelled, but just from a handful of glimpses I can sadly report that all popular entertainment shows everywhere around the world are now hosted by a pair of affable lads carefully copying all the mannerisms of Ant and Dec.

Hope you’ve all enjoyed reading the first six months, and that the next six are also worth recording!

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5 Responses to “Half way in”

  1. Dan says:

    Sounds like all is still going well now you reached the half way mark, so many interesting people and places. Im in Whistler, half way through my holiday, enjoying the snow, food and jacuzzi :D Love reading all your updates, so keep at it. When you get back you will have to turn it into a travel journal and get it published :D Miss ya both, take care.

    • shortclaws says:

      Jacuzzi sounds good – Maureen is envious, as all we have at grandma’s house is a cold tap and a bucket! We never got to Whistler when we visited BC, probably as we weren’t skiing or boarding but just did a big tour around looking for hikes and wildlife.

  2. Elle says:

    Hi guys! Stopped reading for a bit over the holidays, but am now all caught up. My daughter, Katie, (she is the one just born right before I “met” you, and is now TWELVE) INSISTS that you MUST finish your trip in Tulsa, OK USA. I know and have tried to explain that you have it all PLANNED but she is stubborn, so I must extend an invitation to please stop by, if possible. ;-)

    • shortclaws says:

      Thank you for the invitation, and thank Katie for us of course! I doubt we’ll be able to include a whole other continent in the itinerary, but you never know. If we don’t, we still *do* have plans to spend a lot more time exploring the USA some time soon – we’ve only seen California and Florida so far.

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