Bali Bali

A fascinating place! The Balinese people are wonderful! Incredibly warm and welcoming. Always curious to find out where do we come from. Most of them have never been out of Bali or even out of their own region of Bali. And they are content. There was only one taxi driver who told us that he dreams of flying in an air plane and go to NY and Paris, and he added: “But this will never happen.”

Bali is mostly Hindu 80% and the rest are Buddhists, Muslims and Christians. They never even heard of Israel or Judaism. Their official languages are Balinese and Indonesean, but most of them speak English quite well, unlike in Thailand. Their AlphaBet is in Latin letters which makes life easier for us when reading names of places and menus.

They are loving and open and very devoted to their spiritual/ritual way of life. Their life is steeped in their own version of Hinduism which is mixed up with Balinese gods and their own (I dare to say, animistic) traditions. Lots of little ceremonies are completely interwoven with people’s lives. For example, we arranged a driver to pick us up from our Grand Inna hotel in Sanur (outside of Denpasar). A lovely young man showed up and said: “My name is G’de, Katut couldn’t come today because he is participating in a ceremony.” This happened almost every time we scheduled a private driver. This way we got to meet, G’de, Loti, Wayam… you get the idea. We never met the original Katut (which means the youngest son in a family – a common name here.)

Praying in the temple grounds. Each family is doing their own thing with the Holy Man giving them their mantra to pray with. During morning offerings or temple visits for ceremonies they wear traditional clothes which are usually very colorful both for men and women.

Daily offerings at the entrances to homes and business
You can see that this is offered on the black lava pavement: fresh cut lowers, rice, incense. During big ceremonies they offer baskets full of food and roast a piglet for the community to share.
Almost all temples and status are black and not necessarily beautiful as we got used to in Thailand.
The Temple of Holy Water
The Holy Man in a separate booth. He chants, rings a bell and sprinkles holy water.
All men and women need to cover their legs when visiting the temple. This was the result one rainy afternoon!

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