On the 1st of March we have an early flight to one of our favorite destinations, Bali. We were here a little more then 3 years ago, halfway our yearly trip, for more then a month of relaxing surf, and afterwards considered it as the best price/performance we could find in that year. We stayed in the up-and-coming Canggu area, where there is a great reef break and in between the rice fields are a few B&Bs, restaurants and café's. It’s an easy choice to stay here again, especially when we find a new and affordable boutique hotel. When we arrive we recognize all the nice places we stayed and ate/drank, but we also see a lot of changes. Quiet streets that turned into shopping areas, luxury villa’s built left and right, plenty of new coffee places, and hip-and-cool dudes driving around on their deus-ex-machina modified motorcycle with a surfboard attached.
We start our stay with visiting few of our old favorites, the vegetarian Green Ginger restaurant and Suksema, the sushi place, and enjoy it to the fullest. Since the waves are a bit moderate, we rent MTB’s and drive up to the volcano lake, which towards the end has some serious steep sections and I discover that kiting doesn’t provide a lot of cardio fitness. And then after three days I contract a serious fever that doesn’t go away, and after consulting the doctor it turns out to be dengue. It is not as heavy as malaria, but the downside is that there is no treatment except for taking a few paracetamol (it’s almost if you are in Holland, the standard prescription of Dutch doctors) and sit is out, which takes a full week. And that’s a shame, a week inside the room when the surf is waiting. Anyhow, on the last day of this week we have to stay inside anyway as it is Nyepi day, the Balinese New Year and the day of silence where the island literally shuts down: the airport is closed, the port, all shops and businesses, and it is a legal offence if you go on the streets. The use of electricity is limited and at night all the curtains need to be closed and the street lights are off.
And then slowly my blood gets normal and we are able to surf, although the first few days are limited to one session per day because I’m already out of breath after 10 paddle strokes. But the waves are mellow so it doesn’t take a lot of effort. The break is a bit busier than three years ago, but most of them are beginners so there is not a lot of competition in taking the waves.
Saturday, March 19, 2016
Canggu, Bali, Indonesia