Thursday, June 10
Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia
I left the Pelangi Bungalows and Ubud via taxi to the Ubung terminal in Denpasar, where I boarded a bus bound for Surakarta (Solo), Java, a 350-mile, 14-hour hell ride I was really looking forward to. On the way out of Denpasar, I shot a lot of photos of some seriously gritty street scenes that occasionally alternated with their polar opposite: beautiful rice terraces, which sometimes appeared one after another, mile after mile. By the time I got up the gumption to shoot the latter, it started raining, which made it hard to get a clear shot, but some of the photos were smeared with a nice drippy effect.
During the half-hour ferry ride between Bali and Java, there was a funny young guy who wore a clip-on microphone and spoke over a PA hawking all kinds of toys and gadgets as some cheesy Indonesian pop blared in the background. He threw on the ground various spinning toys that lit up with very bright colors. Other items on offer included sunglasses, flashlights, back scratchers, more toys and myriad other things. Although he was extremely animated and peppy, most of the crowd didnâ€™t seem very amused, except for a few mothers who bought a toy or two for their kids.
Goodbye, Bali and hello, Java!