Beaches, bars and a second butchering

Kuta Travel Blog

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Bali bomb memorial

People i met here, who contributed to and improved my trip: Juliana (Russia)

Kuta used to be the favourite haunt of Australian tourists seeking World class surf breaks, this all changed with a nightclub bombing in 2002. Whilst tourist numbers plummeted and international governments advised against travel, the tourist capital of Bali has slowly been trying to re-group. The 2004 tsunami and bird flu have also effected peoples decisions to travel to this part of South East Asia. For those still willing to take the minimal risk and check it out, most come away with good tans and stories of fun nights out.

Our days seemed to follow a similar pattern of getting up in the late morning, sitting in a restaurant and having a cold drink with some lunch, followed by a trip to the beach for some sun bathing.

Waves crashing in on Kuta beach
After this we would head to the air-conditioned McDonalds and enjoy a 10p ice cream. We would saunter back up towards our hotel and occassionally do some shopping, before taking a shower and heading out for Dinner. Depending on our mood, this was often followed by a few bottles of 660ml Bali Hai Beer, which was only 50p in our favourite bar! If we were really pushing the boat out, then we would end up in Bounty night club until the early hours playing pool and drinking the lethal Bomba cocktails, which would certainly mean a late start the following day!

Hannes and Markus caught up with us a few days after we arrived - they had gone to do a few days surfing in Java, as a warm up to the waves that Kuta offered.

Julia with a surfing Ronald McDonald!
Markus however was the only one keen enough to enrol at surf school and he even eventually bought his own board! Having a personality where i want to be the best at what i do, taking up something like surfing has never appealed to me as i know i couldn't dedicate enough time - especially when i'm back in England, so i gave it a miss.

Other activities that hepled pass our 11 day stay included countless games of Ludo and cards, reading 3 books and more importantly the beginning of the football season! Leeds recorded 3 consecutive wins to start the campaign, but still remained rooted to the bottom of the table as we had been deducted 15 points due to 'financial irregularities'. Its not easy been a Leeds fan. Many bars had big screens showing the Premier League and with cheap beer on offer, it was a good combination to an enjoyable evening (for me at least!).

Kuta Beach

The 17th saw Indonesia celebrating their Independence Day and on the beach there were many groups performing their own festivities. This included sack racing, football and prayer offerings. The following day i decided it was time for a hair cut and sceptically walked into a 'hairdressers' near our hotel. When i saw the woman take out some small scissors and search through a bottom drawer for her clippers, that were stored in their original box, the alarm bells began to ring, but i resisted the urge to get up and walk out - what an idiot! She began hacking away at my hair with the nail scissors before deciding that a better route was to just chop lumps off with a cut throat razor. Next up, she set to work with the clippers, which were not oiled and presumably blunt as they kept taking off uneven lengths of hair.

Statue in a roundabout
Within 10 minutes i looked like i had been attacked by a pack of dobermans. Julia looked on in horror whilst all i could do was laugh. I decided that it all had to shaved again as there really was no other alternative. The woman performing the butchering seemed a little bit embarrassed by her own ineptness - clearly this was a side business to her massage shop. She handed the clippers over and i tried as best i could to finish my own haircut! This wasn't as easy as it sounds as the blunt clippers were barely usable. After well over an hour i left the shop looking like an army conscript - obviously the woman asked to be paid. I wanted to laugh in her face, but i liked her bare face cheek and handed over the cash - why, i still don't know!

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Bali bomb memorial
Bali bomb memorial
Waves crashing in on Kuta beach
Waves crashing in on Kuta beach
Julia with a surfing Ronald McDona…
Julia with a surfing Ronald McDon…
Kuta Beach
Kuta Beach
Statue in a roundabout
Statue in a roundabout
The main tourist road running thro…
The main tourist road running thr…
Kuta
photo by: eddie8498