Bali Boy Braves the Waves!

Superstitions run deep. Bodies of water harbor entities, not all benign, and on this island elaborate rituals are enacted to keep those restless spirits in their place. So swimming is not an altogether comfortable idea for many Balinese people. But today we went to the beach. It’s the supposedly hidden one, off the beaten track, hard to access. The trail appears to drop off into nothingness.


Counter to intuition that told us to continue following the path forward, there’s a door in the side of the wall. I missed it the first time. The trail grew narrower, and narrower, steeper and steeper, until without mountain climbing gear, I wasn’t going another step.

P1100225Feeling a bit like Alice in Wonderland jumping down the rabbit hole, we retraced our steps, found the opening and passed through. It was still a steep descent to the beach, but once there we found the place almost deserted.

P1100193With the exception of a pair of sleeping beauties.

P1100198Today was to be special. Our friend, Nancy, was going to teach Wayan how to swim. But as we settled in at the local warung and ordered our favorite drinks, it was clear that the waves were unusually high and rolling in with astonishing speed. So we sat. And we watched. And we sat some more. We sat and watched while people arrived and congregated on the sand in front of us. The sarong vendor hawked her wares. The beach masseuses found willing victims.


And still we sat. We ordered coffee, then  lunch, then more lunch, then more coffee. The waves crashed on.


By late afternoon, Ketut was looking significantly bored with the whole affair and I was making going home noises when all of a sudden, Wayan jumped up, stripped off his jeans, and headed to the water. There was no swimming lesson, Nancy had gotten over that idea real quick. But Wayan cavorted, splashed, sputtered and played, and emerged at last with a very large, very happy grin. And the rest of us…well, we did what we do best…we watched.

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. stevecastley
    Sep 19, 2015 @ 17:59:41

    Watching, watching, always watching… then writing. Another lovely exploit.



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