We are finally done house hunting and will be moving in tomorrow. That should take about 30 seconds since all we have to do is drop the one duffle we each own (aside from duffles in NZ), and we will be moved in! The rental in unfurnished so Mycah is excited to be the official interior decorator, and decorate how ever she’d like. She’s always wanted the experience, so we thought we’d allow her. There are so many incredibly inexpensive local hole in the wall stores where unbelievable bargains can be found. We hope to make extra money to save up for the next boat by having some Air B&B rooms in our home, so the goal is well made and inexpensive, beautiful furniture. Pictures will follow.
As we settle into life here in Bali, we are learning all sorts of things about all sorts of things….
In order to really blend in, transportation in the form of a scooter is in order. The Balinese people really love Honda brands in black, red and white, and they can be bought or rented all over the island.
You can legally drive a scooter here if you’re 17 and over, though we’ve seen 12 years olds driving and if you happen to be pulled over, simply slipping the cop a couple small bills takes care of the issue. We figured that since Jude and Mycah are just learning, they won’t be carrying passengers, so we’d use 4 of them for our family – the twins riding on the back of mine and Danny’s.
The traffic here is crazier than you could ever imagine. It makes driving in Dominican Republic, Mexico or Panama look like a walk in the park. The rules of the road are that anyone can drive anywhere regardless of ‘lanes’, stripes, sidewalks, traffic direction etc. The person ahead of you has right of way, which means everyone does, and all drivers are caring and courteous and will gently tap their hooter as they approach just let let you know you’re loved and they’re there. At first it’s unnerving but quite reassuring after a while. As you drive down the road, people may be going at you from both side as if you were in a center lane surrounded by traffic going the opposite direction. Cars will randomly join in from who knows where just as someone pops in next to you from a side walk on the other side of the road.
Scooters have replaced pick up trucks, delivery trucks, minivans, food vendor vehicles, family cars and long bed semi’s. We’ve seen them riding past carrying entire families, including 99 year old Grandpa Ketut, the newborn twins that arrived just yesterday as well as visiting family and a bird cage with the pet budgie in it. We’ve seen scooters where the driver has 50 baskets stacked all around him as well as 17 more on his head, one man had all the produce from the entire farmers market on his with him, while others have 6 meters of rebar as well as 12 bags of dry cement mix arranged all about, and even with that kind of load, in the drivers left hand is a cell phone and the other hand has a lit cigaret which he takes a puff of periodically as he lifts the hygiene mask from off his nose to do it. Wouldn’t want to breathe those nasty car fumes in!
As far as naming ones children here, it’s really quite simple…the first born is always named Wayan, the second child is Kadek, the third is Komang and the forth is Ketut. In the absolutely crazy chance you have more than 4 kids, you just start over again with the fifth child being Wayan, the sixth is Kadek, seventh is Komang and eighth Ketut. The children can be given a second name of the parents choosing, and then of course they have the family last name. Mycah, who is the 8th child, has introduced herself as Ketut several times and the locals love it!
Danny and I went to the dentist this last week. I had full X-ray taken, teeth examined, cleaned and polished for $45. Danny had the X-ray done, one tooth pulled and three fillings done for $300. The facility was wonderful, staff were excellent, understood and spoke English, and I’d recommend them to anyone. So, if you know of anyone that needs good, inexpensive dental care, tell them we can set them up in our Air B&B and take them to the dentist! We’ll find out this week what medical care is like.
We’ve been warned not to drink the tap water here because if we do we’ll get ‘Bali belly’, which I’m told is quite unpleasant. I’d like to try it sometime just for kicks! The street food is so delicious and none of us have been sick once. The creatures thought they’d be funny and buy Danny a grilled chicken for lunch. It looked like someone had ridden over it several times with the scooter then rammed a stick through it and popped it on the barbie – head and all. Danny thought it was delicious!
We have learned that suksma means thank you, salama tasi is good morning, ma ap is sorry and maoli is you’re welcome. Our vocab is growing slowly but surely and we have made several friends. I taught the youth in our church today, 3 being mine, 3 from Utah and the remainer locals, and they were a great group of kids.
We love the Balinese people with their big smiles and sweet, kind personalities. We have been gathering information on places to do humanitarian work, and will jump in with sleeves rolled up as soon as we can. We are so blessed to be together in this experience of growing and learning.