Something rather magical has stirred the spirit in our souls. We have moved on after four glorious nights at Candi Dasa Beach cottages and now find ourselves on the far west of the island at Puri Dajuma Cottages, just on from Pekutatan. A smaller town than Candi and the district is much more rural.
Just to get as far away as possible from the 7,300 mile separation, the retreat itself is down a few kilometres of track. Another charming Balinese welcome awaits inside a high vaulted, dark wood reception hall. Fans billow down cool air as we sup a welcome drink at check in. Forte on the M1 this is not. Even our taxi driver is invited to join with us as we take a drink, but more of him at the end.
Candi was a lot more busy. It felt like it was a well cut diamond just off the tourist town. A lovely diamond, but closer to life. Did we go for it much there? Nope. We took one trip in to town for lunch and ate a good meal at a Logong restaurant. Bought a hat, bought some glasses, Kate discovered an inner desire for small percussion instruments and fended off half a dozen offers of tours. But it’s a nice place and the folk were friendly.
We deeply considered a trip to the mother temple which was not far. But then we did some research and asked about a bit. In short, for a religious site, it seems unusually run by the mafia. Guides exist to guide your rupiah and what follows on entry is far from religious. So we really did um and ah. Tripadvisor was full, literally full of bad experiences and although it is not the bible, the last thing we wanted to do was to ruin our splendid karma. So we shunned the spirit, forgive us, oh great one.
So we took a taxi at checkout to Pekutatan. Not that anybody had heard of it. Our foolish western naivety assumed that all Balinese would have an inherent knowledge of every inch of their island. Just in the same way I would know of every small village in Devon! Durrrrrr. Google maps to the rescue.
The drive was fine. Really, fine. Horns, swerves, wobbles, blind overtakes, but much better than the taxi from Denpasar. Until he knocked a guy off his scooter and had to bung him 500,000 IDRs not to involve the police. In fact, if it hadn’t been for Kate and I yelping in pity for the sprawled scooter owner, I half think he may have driven on without stopping.
The rest of the journey was fine and we had no further RTAs to report. But we did leave finger marks in the seats beside us. He was actually quite a considerate driver and got us there in three hours and we were still alive. And the scooter guy was alive too, probably. So … good!
Puri Dajuma is a blissful place of calm and mellow-e-tude. The smells and sounds are great, I wish I could send the smells but you will have to make do with the sounds. I shall upload some recordings if the great God Wiffy (wifi) is with us.
Peace be with you, and all that.