I need to see the water… but Kuta is a hot mess!

Posted on September 18, 2011

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After a few days, I feel this urge to see the water. I am in Bali and haven’t gone to the beach yet. And, although I know Kuta is a disaster area (overflowing broken streets of buzzing motorbikes, drunkard euros, terrible tourists, and vendors attempting to make a living off of it all), it’s a central area that the cheap Perama bus goes to regularly. So i hop on the hour bus ride for 50,000 rupiah- much cheaper than the 200,000 i spent on private travel from the airport to Ubud… Sure enough, as soon as we get onto the main road in Kuta (Jl. Legian), I am reminded of it’s hectic air as we are dozens of cars away from the drop station. I decide to cut my losses right then and there, hop off, and walk in the exact opposite direction. What was i thinking, i wonder… i walk, hoping to find interenet to search for a new host or homestay to spend the night, but i find only store after store after store selling the same cheap fashion items.

This is the longest I have walked with my fully-loaded backpack on. So far, i am thanking myself for downsizing (i made a last min decision to use a 35pack instead of a 65pack) because the heat and lack of interesting scenery is really a drag at this point… After 4 roads to the beach, no internet spots, and an hour later, I finally crack open my heavy LP book to see if there is a decent restaurant or cafe around to eat. There’s a vegetarian resto coming up in Seminyak called Zula. it was a god send! I eat lunch and dinner there and get free wi-fi.

Before i know it, it’s dark and i must find a place to stay since the Perama busses back to Ubud are done for the day. I leave my bags at the resto and find a decent place amongst the highly priced villas of Seminyak. it’s quite and simple, a perfect alternative to Kuta, but i would like to share at least a conversation with someone. and i know exactly who! A man had come into the cafe a couple hours earlier. when i return to the cafe to get my bags he is also gathering his things. he walks out, i boldly follow, and there’s the start to my evening convo!

I finally get my walk on the beach. Funny, we end up walking all the way back to Kuta where we enjoy the empty evening beach and its starlit waves. And i am drawn to our conversation much more than the blaring music playing from an enormous empty club nearby. I find the way this man travels brings me great joy. To know one can succeed in trusting their heart and wanderlust is uplifting and exciting to hear. In one quick instance he went from Canada to Taiwan based on a woman observing his “climbing” shirt. She suggested Taiwan for climbing and that he could teach English. He was there in 2 weeks, ready to teach what little English he actually knew, and succeeded in living there happily for 11 years! And 2 weeks ago he went to the AirAsia ticket counter and asked where the cheapest place to go was- Thailand, but he preferred a new destination so returned to the Air Asia ticket desk to ask where the next cheap destination was- Bali, where we met a few days after his arrival… Again, my wanderlust is sparked- this time by this man’s stories of his 11 years spent in Taiwan. Taiwan!? that place i transit in- that many ppl transit in, but never take the time to explore. yes, i will go!

And i long to hear more of Taiwan and why he quit 2 weeks ago, leaving for the next leg of his life’s journey. I decide to wait until our lunch date scheduled for the following day. But our separate morning activities give this man enough time to rent a motorbike and wait (impatiently, maybe) for my return, only to tell me of his decision to bike around the island. how great! i wanna go, too! i show my excitement, but i don’t find the invitation i am fishing for to join (haha) so we part ways.

Zula Vegetarian Restaurant – Dhyana Pura 5, Seminyak

Salad and Smoothy @ Zula

i stayed at the most decent place in Kuta, probably. the only quite road that is close to the main drag.

quiete, cheap (110.000) place in Kuta

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Posted in: Indonesia