Hello everybody! I know it may seem like forever to family and friends back home, but we have been gone 10 days now and oooh are we missing our chile and home foods so much that for every meal we ask the kind Balinese waitresses for “spicy sauce”. Sometimes they bring us their own spicy sauce (which is usually pretty spicy), sometimes we receive Tabasco sauce and on occasion we get Ketchup as spicy sauce, and once we get ketchup we just give up and enjoy our meal as is. Besides our Sonic, Pop Tart and Enchilada cravings we are all functioning on the delicious Mie Goreng (noodle dish) and Nasi Goreng (rice dish), along with many other delicious meals.
Today was a long but fun day. We of course woke up early, took our amazing morning walks and came to eat our new favorite breakfast dish which is the banana pancakes from the hotel. Every day we scarf down our breakfast but today was different. Wayan (the hotel manager that cooks for us) went to his village for a ceremony, and so one of the other staff members of the hotel cooked for us. Don’t get me wrong it was still delicious, but it was in fact different from Wayan’s cooking and it made me appreciate Wayan’s cooking a lot more. After breakfast, we left the hotel to one of my favorite classes which is our Gamelon class. It is one of my favorites because we get to be loud and our group is indeed really good at being loud and outgoing. At the end of our class yesterday we learned our second tune as a group and all day today we practiced the very first one and continuing almost right away to the new one. Transitioning was difficult and at times frustrating, but the teachers are so fun and helpful that our frustration and confusion turns into positivity, fun and a learning moment.
After Gamelon, we went to our everyday restaurant which is called Mangga Madu. Today as a group we did what we do best and order the same meal as each other. Sadly but surely, today’s lunch was a Hawaiian Pizza. Yes, we traveled across the world and ordered pizza. But oh my goodness it was delicious! It had marinara sauce, olives, basil, pineapple, chicken and mozzarella cheese and this restaurant gives us Tabasco so we also added some of that good stuff to our pizza. After stuffing our face (again) we all took our daily routine nap and got rested for our next class, which was either painting or puppet making.
Our puppet making class/painting class went by quickly and we then returned to our hotel. When we got back Marie and I did laundry, which was very much-needed by many of us. Marie and I sat on one of the front porches. I had the worst hiccups ever, but we laughed about it and got our clothes washed by hand pretty quickly. That experience has made me appreciate and understand the blessings we have in America. While doing our laundry everyone gathered around us and we had an exciting meeting which we talked about what is to come in the next few days. We excitedly got told that the next few days will be very new and very different. No Gamelon classes, no puppet making, and no painting classes. Tomorrow (June 7th) we are finally going to be able to do our own shopping and bargain for sarongs. We are also going to see where our homestay will be and where we will be staying on the beach. This weekend we will be attending a cremation and a temple ceremony.
I am looking forward to many new and exciting events but am also kind of nervous for what’s to come. I’m sure with this group we will come across many more inside jokes, many more memories and have tons of more fun and learn about things we’ve never known about!