With Bec’s imminent departure from Abu Dhabi, we thought we’d get in one last vacation together out of Abu Dhabi. We decided on a week in Bali and set out for Jakarta in the early morning hours of Friday, September 9th. After a quick change to the domestic airport it was only another 2 hour flight to Bali. It was late when we arrived so we stayed near the airport.
The next morning, we headed inland to a resort near the cultural city of Ubud. The resort is located on a secluded ridge overlooking the steep Ayung River valley. The estate is billed as a wellness resort and we spent our time doing yoga, lounging by the pool, and eating delicious and healthy food. There was also some short hiking trails that led down to the river and some amazing spring-fed rock pools. It was so relaxing and well needed…we rarely take the time to just chill out on vacation.
After 4 nights in Ubud, we arranged transportation to the southernmost part of Bali, Bukit Peninsula. We found a great hotel with an incredible view in the seaside cliff top village of Bingin. We enjoyed some more yoga and walked down to the beach each day. On our second night, we found a great seaside BBQ restaurant where you choose your seafood from the display and dine on the sand.
On the last morning, I walked down the hotel’s pool area on the edge of the cliffs. The resident macaques were just arriving and I sat to watch them with a few other hotel guests. They raided a fruit bearing tree near the pool and then started to wonder off. I thought they had all left the tree so I went over to have a look at what exactly they were eating. I was surprised to see there was still one monkey left in the tree right above me when suddenly the troop’s patriarch was charging across the hotel lawn in my direction. He was pissed that I was so close to the monkey in the tree. He was hissing and baring his teeth and I thought for sure he was going to bite me. I slowly backed away around the pool until he finally calmed down. Damn macaques! At breakfast, people were talking about what was now being referred to as the “monkey incident”.
Bec had posted a picture of the local brew, Bintang, on Facebook and the wife of my university buddy Zack soon saw it. Coincidentally, Zack would be flying into Bali just 2 hours after Bec and I were scheduled to fly out. He is a surfer and was meeting his friend from Australia for a week of surfing. I got the green light from Bec and extended my trip another 3 nights.
I saw Bec off at the airport the morning of September 17th and caught a taxi to the village of Canggu. I dropped my bags at the hotel, walked down to the beach, and kept the yoga streak going with a vinyasa class at a nearby studio. Zack arrived at the hotel and he wanted to catch the last bit of daylight in the surf. We walked down to the beach, he surfed and I swam. Later that night, we met his friend Ben, who I had met 5 years earlier in Queensland.
I lounged on the beach reading my book, swam in the waves, and kept up with the yoga while Zack and Ben surfed over the next 2 days. On Tuesday, it was finally time to head back to Abu Dhabi. Bec would be moving to Berlin that weekend.