Saturday, April 02, 2005

Bali…Island of the Gods

My family visited Bali for the 3rd time last week. It is truly a great place to go to chill out and basically do nothing if you are so inclined. Alternatively, there are a variety of sights (eg.Gunung Batur, Tanah Lot), cultural activities (Indonesian dance & musical performances like gamelan) and artsy areas (i.e. Ubud - overrated & overly commercialised, in my opinion...need to find a local to look for more reasonable prices) to visit. Shopping, for Singaporeans of course, is a no-brainer.

We stayed on Nusa Dua - a nice beach but rather touristy with numerous beach touts selling their wares and assorted water sport related services. The sea was not terribly clean (plastic bags floating around) but had an abundance of sea life which made exploring the rock pools at low tide a great adventure. My younger son and I spent a wonderful time doing just that, discovering live coral, starfish, crabs, seashells and the occasional dead fish (paranoid kid that he is, he said, "A tsunami is coming!") It was one of those snapshot moments which hopefully in the years to come, will be something he will look back on fondly as quality time spent with Mom.

I still remember the vacations I used to spend with my family as a kid in a beachfront bungalow in Port Dickson, Malaysia, with a number of cousins, aunties, uncles and grandparents. We frolicked (<-- ha! Always wanted to use this word!) in the sand, played water games, explored the tiny "caves" which were exposed at low tide, looked for fish (only found mudskippers) in the rock pools and literally spent every waking hour in our swim suits. Of course, we all got terribly sunburnt (those were the days before sunscreen) but that never deterred us kids. Indeed, those memories are one of the precious ones which I will never let go.

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