Sometime this time last year, Suanie called me up in the middle of the night (around 2am), asking me if I wanted to go Bali. In my half asleep mode I must've agreed to it because there we were almost a year later, in the Air Asia plane on the way to Bali, on a fine Thursday night.
Being the lazy ass that I shamelessly am, I conveniently left all the planning to Suanie. From itinerary to hostel bookings - everything was managed by Suanie via the internetz. All I had to do was sit on my ass, give her some indication of how much I was willing to spend (not a lot) and give my opinions on lodging and destination selected by Suanie. Hehehe, thanks a mill babe. Until the evening we took off, I still wasn't sure of the details of our trip. All I know was that we were going to stay in some hostel, climb some volcano (I thought she was kidding), eat some babi guling somewhere, check out the sunset at some nice expensive place and make a trip to Tanah Lot. :P
So Air Asia was on time - I know right, should've bought a 4D ticket. QZ 8395 I think. Inwardly, I was a little apprehensive about the whole swine flu thing, but thought that if it was time, it was time, let fate decide (and here I am still blogging, thank you powers that be). 3 hours and a bottle of overpriced bottled water later, we finally arrived at the Bali airport.
Have I mentioned before how much I really hate our LCCT? I have? Well, here's a reminder, I really, really, really hate LCCT with every fibre of my being. It's so chaotic, random and the layout so badly planned it was as if a 5 year old had designed it. If I was god I would used my divine powers to obliterate this sorry piece of excuse for a plane terminal away from face of this earth with my thunderbolts. Or a level 10 fireball.
By the time we got out of the Bali airport it was nightfall. Around 10 maybe? Outside the airport greeting us were swarms of touters. I thought that there were too many touters in KLIA, but in the Bali airport the numbers were multiplied by at least 5. Feeling hot, tired, cranky, and to be greeted by scums of the universe at the first step into a foreign country doesn't really make a visitor feel welcomed. I think suanie and I were ready to take the first flight back to Malaysia, or at least, I was. I don't quite know how to articulate the feeling I had at this point of time, but it was a mix of intense hatred and extreme annoyance caused in part by the uncomfortable as fuck air asia seats, partly by the touters, and partly by the fact that it was bloody late at night.
Thing is, I've been here many years ago with my family, but didn't recalled the outside bit of the airport so chaotic.
Of course we were approached by a few touters charging us some pretty ridiculous (on retrospect, not really lah) prices to take us to our hostel. Suanie being suanie layaned them very friendly-like while in my mind I was screaming at her to just ignore them, but with the obvious lack of telepathic powers, I couldn't transfer my thoughts to her. After a while they left us alone, but a couple of them had a really unfriendly face after which made me even more jittery.
We spend a little time wandering around the area looking for a legitimate taxi line or a counter, because I didn't care how third world this country I was sure that there HAD to be one! AHAH FOUND ONE! But there were like 10 people ahead of us ARGH. We spent at least 20 mins queuing and it was finally our turn. RPH 50,000 (abt RM20) to central Kuta. eventhough it was 20-30k lesser than what the touters offered I still think it was a damn rip off. Annoyance level increased twofolds.
Not only was this driver bloody unfriendly and looked like he could rob us at knifepoint, this motherless lying pond scum had the nerve to bloody tell us that he won't be able to drop us at our hostel front because the lane where the hostel was located at is too tiny for a cab to go through. We didn't argue because we didn't know better and agreed that it was okay as long as he could show us how to get to our hostel by foot. Thank you so much for the bloody vague direction you useless piece of shit. We must've spent what felt like hours (less than 15 mins tbh) wandering around the tiny badly litted lane surrounded by closed shops looking for the right lane. Kept asking every white person for the right direction because hey, in a foreign land, you can only trust another tourist to not lie to you. Suanie had a humogous rolling bag which was pretty damn horrible to carry about town with uneven lanes and at so late into the night, I felt so bad for her. Berat mata memandang......
I regret until now that I didn't take a picture of his damn cab to plaster it all over the blog and other tourist advisor sites to tell everyone to STAY AWAY from this cheating ass wipe. Because we found out the next day that he could very well enter the lane through another way. ANGER! HULKRAGE! CRUSHCAB! CRUSHDRIVER!
We finally found the hostel - which looked really dodgy and shabby on the outside. If we weren't already disheartened from our airport and cabby experience, the exterior of the hostel would've killed all our spirits. At this point, we couldn't care less anymore. Just give us a damn place to chuck our things sit and lie down and a place to shower kthx. We checked in, walked in, and lo and behold, the interior was bloody fantastic. It was like we walked into a secret garden which as maintained by fairy creatures. 2 swimming pools, lots of plants, well maintained lawn. Ever 5 steps we took Suanie and I went "WOAH. WOAH. WOAH!". Definitely more than meets the eye.
We were shown to our room, which had all the basic amenities, 2 super single beds & blankets, a tv, mini bar, cupboards, aircond, shower, toilet, sink. No toiletries though, but that was expected so no complains there.
So I thanked the heavens that something went right that night, chucked our stuff, and together with Suanie, went out to the nearest pub for some booze.
After a couple of big bottled Bintang and a glass of arrak cocktail, we were ready to call it a night..... not too peacefully because everything creaked and the walls were too thin but oh well, one has to stop bitching sometime, right?
I think at the end of the night, I might have said something to the effect that we've been through what was probably the worst parts of the trip and things could only get better. But not sure if it was out loud or in my mind only, heh.
No pictures on the first day because while going through our fantastic night adventures, I really couldn't be bothered. Will beautify post later after stealing some from Suanie.
Read Suanie's version of our first "day" here.
P/s: Mum, if you are reading this, we were never at any point of time, in danger. It was just a little scary at times, but mostly a whole lot of inconvenience. The whole place very safe one, hehe. You know lah bloggers. Have to add in more spice to make story interesting mah. :P