Random Solitary Thoughts

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

The day the waves came...

We woke up early enough to attend a cultural performance of the Barong Dance, which is a dance telling the story of how good overcame evil and everyone lived (well... those who survived anyway...) happily ever after.

So onwards to details... the Barong dance is basically about the Barong, which is a good colourful protector of the jungle. It starts with two servants of one great person going to meet the King or something. Along the way, some evil spirit terrorists belonging to this underground organisation ruled by a vicious evil spirit king hijacked their bodies and in turn instigated the King/Sultan person to sacrifice his son to the evil spirit king.

For added assurance, some extra evil spirit terrorist hijacked the Sultan/King/Spiritual leaders's body and pissed him off, so he sent his son to her death. (The son was played by a female...) Oh, by the way,while all this was happening, somewhere in between, the Barong's servants, (in the form of three apparently beautiful lady dancers) came out to perform some weird Balinese dance with their eyes wide open and staring as if to kill.

Anyway, the Prince was tied to a tree and his guardian angel or some Dewa came down adn made him immortal, so when the evil spirit king came to eat him, he couldn't and the Prince got free and proceeded to battle the evil guy. Then the evil guy lost and turned into a wild boar and lost again. This scene was obscenely done and a rude shock to the otherwise rich cultural dance. The boar was stabbed and had his penis cut off in a manner meant to be a cheap joke. No doubt it didn't impress me...

Then the peniless.. er I mean... penisless evil person turned into a bird and fought and lost and then finally he turned into the most evil and vile creature ever.. his true form I believe (I again forgot the name of the creature he was...) and finally defeated the Prince. The prince then meditated (without being interrupted) and turned into the magical and mystical Barong! So they fought and fought but the evil spirit was too powerful, so the Barong's servants (guys this time..) came out with Kris's and fought along side the Barong.

After that, they sacrificed themselves (rather pathetically) by stabbing themselves with the Kris's and turning them round and round on their bodies as if they're trying to unscrew something accompanied by over-dramatised screaming. This is to symbolise how good triumph over evil, though I wouldn't know how killing yourself would help anything...

Anyhow, that's how the dance went and after that we went back to the hotel for a quick change before going to Kuta beach.

At the beach we were mobbed once again by the endless stream of traders. By now, we were already accustomed to their pestering so we ignored them and went surfing. At least I did... Kotak had a small board for cruising along the waves while I rented the big one for 'real' surfing!

It turned out to be quite a challenge as I attmepted to ride wave after wave. After about 45 minutes of seawater swallowing... I decided I've had enough salt deposits to last me a lifetime and proceeded to head back to shore.

We went back to the hotel and it was all packing and getting ready for our departure in the evening. The rest of the day wasn't as eventful, as we waited for the guy to pick us up and send us to the airport.

And to cut things short, (which didn't seem like the case so far...) we ended up on seperate flights back to Malaysia.

So ends our trip to Bali, an unforgettable shopping experience that put me off roadside shopping for a long time, a good bargain with the football boots, nice scenery, not so nice food, but altogether a well deserved holiday!


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