Saturday, July 3, 2010
"Today was the first Cudamani filed trip and we went to two temples. The first was Pura Tirta Empul near the village of Tampaksiring, which is a water temple with several springs (11 in total), each with its own spiritual property and power.
There is a designated bathing area where people are able to bathe in the holy water. The whole temple was overlooked by the Sukarno palace at the top of a hill.
|Sukarno palace on top of the hill|
"We then drove up to Gunung Batur (Mount Batur), which is an absolutely breathtaking part of Bali! It is a volcano in Central Bali with a huge 10x15km crater. Inside the crater is the peak of Gunung Batur, an active volcano even today, set beside Danau (lake) Batur. The view was absolutely unbelievable!
|View from our table at lunch - the dark portion of land on the left is the most recent lava flow|
"Before we ate lunch at this spectacular restaurant, we went to Pura (temple) Ulun Danu Batur to pray.
We were the only ones there and it felt both peaceful and deserted.
It was such a beautiful space, though, and an incredible experience.
I can't wait to see what Bali has to offer next!"
Sunday, July 4, 2010
"Today was my first real day off since my first day in Bali. I went with six other people on a trip with Danu, our beloved driver. He first took us to see a Barong performance. To describe it in its simplest terms, this was a representation of an eternal fight between good and evil. The Barong (a mythical animal, in this case a lion) represent the good spirit and is the protector of the village
while Rangda (a monster/witch) is the evil spirit.
There was a lot of fighting, possession, mythical animals, a royal family, shape-shifting... you know, the usual. I am very glad I got to see one of these performances."
|The Queen and Prince|
In the above picture, the Queen is being possessed by one of Rangda's minions. This causes her to tie the prince to a tree, allowing Rangda to appear and eat him.
|Conflict between Barong and Rangda|
|Rangda uses her magic to turn the warriors' swords against them|
|But in the end the Barong steps in to protect their physical bodies|
It is on the East side of the island and in the distance you could just barely make out the island of Lombok. there were a lot of bits of coral in the water and I think that's what made up most of the sand. The sand was rather coarse (at least right on the shoreline) and the individual grains were so large that you could tell they were coral and shells, worn down into a shape I can only describe as a circular pyramid.
|Closeup of sand|
See, I told you there would be more pictures today. Remember that you can always click on them to embiggen them (I think). Thanks for reading!