Magu Bee at World's End

A travel blog of one crazy Magu Bee traveling the globe.

To me, Bali has always been a synonym of wild parties, white sandy beaches and water so blue your eyes hurt; in short - a place I couldn't afford to go to, and wouldn't see till I got a proper job and saved a little fortune. 

Little did I know that I'd be buying a flight ticket to go there 2 weeks before leaving Poland, 3 weeks before arriving on the Island of the Gods. I arrived late in the evening, registered in my homestay, and set off to Legian - the legendary party area. Seeing the nightlife on this first night assured me that I'd be falling in love with the place pretty fast.
Kuta's the most touristic and crowded place on Bali, so I suppose it makes it the most touristic place in the whole country. You've got your fancy hotels and restaurants, Starbucks, McDo & Hard Rock Cafe, a Carrefour and a shopping mall; on the other hand many warungs (local bistros of a sort), clothes stands where you have to learn the art of bargaining or they'll rip you off mercilessly (to them we're a walking, breathing ATM), little temples and surfing. Loads of surfing. 
And where there's good surfing, inexpensive accommodation (you can get a very decent double room for 15$) and cheap food (dinner in a warung will cost you around 1,5$) you'll have hundreds of Australians (I couldn't stand all the drunk and high Aussies at night, especially in places like Paddys), Japanese, Germans and Frenchies.

I've been to Kuta twice - 3 days in the beginning of the Indonesian part of my journey, and again a week after some days spent on the neighbouring islands. The pics in here are from my second time there; somehow, I don't have any taken in Kuta the frist time around.

The nicest place I've stayed in. Decided to stay there only because I shared the room with 3 other girls, whom  I'd met on a ferry from Lombok. I had seen them on one of Gili Islands a couple of days beforehand, and had chatted them up asking bout their hairdo.

We spent a day in Kuta together and then they were off for their adventure in Australia.

A more 'fancy' part of the beach, in front of some of the hotels (hence the sunbeds and umbrellas). Also, notice the little leaf altars with rice and flowers. They're everywhere - in shops, warungs, hotels, in front of private houses and inside all the temples.

 There's basically one (one-way) street which goes all around the town, also passing through the neighbouring Legian and I think it also leads to Seminyak, another town closeby.

 A night out in a reggae club. Reggae's really popular in Indonesia, at least the parts I've visited. In almost every town you'll find a pub/club playing Bob Marley, very often with a local rasta band and live music.

One of those random things... The 1st night I came back to Bali from Lombok, I went out with one of the German girls and happened to go to Sky Garden.  Luck would have it that they were helding auditions for a dance contest, with the catchy name 'So you think you can dance'. I was in a very good mood and Marit insisted I try out for it, so she gave me her clothes (I was in a dress) and I took to the stage. It was on a Tuesday, and I was meaning to head out for Java first thing on Friday morning. However, the next day I got an email informing me that I was through to the semi-finals, which took place on Friday night. I was really torn apart, as my best friend was awaiting me on Java and I wanted to spend more time with her. But then I figured - how often do you get the opportunity to take part in a dance contest on Bali?

So I came back for the semi-finals, and then again that Sunday for the finals, where I placed 3rd. There was a  lot of controversy when it came to the judges' scoring. They had advertised it as a 'freestyle hip hop/house' competition and the 1st place went to salsa dancers (instructors from the oldest salsa school on Bali) and the 2nd to a crew of Bali's hip hop instructors, who brought their own music and performed a prepared routine. The other dancers where furious!

I, however, was pretty happy :) I wasn't feeling that great as I'd pulled or ripped a muscle Friday night, but the warming ointment, painkillers and a few drinks were helping. I won 2 mln rupiah in cash (9k rupiah = 1$), around 1 mln in gadgets from the sponsor and food/drinks vouchers to Legian 61 worth another 1 mln. Altogether more than 400$. Not too bad for the total of 6 mins of ass shaking, rite? ;)

I definitely wouldn't have had so much fun and self-confidence to go on with the contest, if it weren't for a couple of CSers from Ubud, a town about an hour and a half away from Kuta. We'd met over dinner when I was hosted by Endang, and they came all the way down to Kuta to support me. I've said it many times, and will do so many more - the best cheerleaders ever!

I have to admit the vouchers presented a bit of a problem. Legian 61 is a combo of 3 night clubs, a restaurant, a bar and a take away bakery/pastry/panini place all in one. The prices, for Balinese standards and for my budget, were pretty high. But still, a cheesebuger meal like this one:  
cost 35k (so around 4$). I got the vouchers on Monday at round 11am and was flying to Jogya, on Java, the next day at 7am. Had I received them earlier, I could have been spoiling myself with great European and Asian food for a week. As it was, I had about 17hrs to spend more than 100$. You can probably guess that I'd never eaten so much before, and hope to never do so again. The amount of calories I'd taken in during the following 15hrs would normally take me a couple of days to accumulate. Luckily, free food is great motivation, so Paulina, Manu and Lloyd drove down to Kuta again, and were joined by Blue (a fellow CSer met a couple of days before), my host and myself.


 It was a feast we would be digesting for many days to come.
It was an amazing farewell to Bali. Although it was more of a 'see you soon, pal!' than a 'goodbye'. For I will go back there, for sure.

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