Monday, June 7
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
I went to the central market in Ubud today and bought a few little Bali souvenirs: a decorative fold-out fan, a little dragon's head and some postcards. Then I dropped by the post office to have them boxed up with my Wayang Kulit puppet, a DVD of the Yamasari gamelan and dance troupe from Peliatan, and my stack of show prorgrams. It cost around $30 to ship them by boat. Well, it was actually $24, but they added on a few bucks for packaging, etc. which I'm sure they pocketed.
As evening arrived, I took in a show at Bale Banjar Ubud Kelod by an all-female gamelan and dance troupe called Luh Luwih. The program opened with a dynamic instrumental called Ujan Mas, followed by the Gabor Dance, which is employed during temple ceremonies when fruit and flower offerings are placed on shrines. Five young girls displayed a graceful dance and threw flowers from silver bowls to welcome the audience.
Next came the strangely funny Topeng Tua mask dance that studies the personality of an old codger. Third in line, the Cendrawasih Dance paid homage to a beautiful bird of paradise from Irian Island. Then came the gorgeous Oleg Tambulilingan, or Bumblebee Dance that tells the tale of two bees falling in love in a flower garden, followed by brash yet elegant Taruna Jaya Dance, and the always oddly hyper and energetic Baris Dance that celebrates the Balinese warrior.