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Getting There - Aneel's Travelogue

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Back to the lowlands Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, Wednesday, 29 June 2011 3:56am

There were some great views of rice terraces and mist on the ride down from Bedugul to Denpasar. It was a little tricky finding my hotel, since the building numbers aren't sequential. I'm not sure if they use a Japanese-style numbering based on the order built, or if there is some other scheme.

My main shoes are still soaked from yesterday, so I wore my Vibram toe shoes to walk around today. That was a mistake. I don't know if it was the uneven ground or just that I'm unused to walking long distances in them (they're exclusively weightlifting shoes at home, but I brought them to see if they make good deck shoes and could replace my diving boots), but my right foot definitely ached after just a few kilometers.

I took a break for lunch at a secluded little cafe and had a good dish of chicken and rice cooked in a banana leaf, and a great drink/dessert consisting of crushed ice, flavored liquids, fruit, and various jellies. After that I gave in to my foot ache and caught a cab the other half of the way to the museum.

The museum exhibits were a bit thin. They covered a lot of ground, spanning prehistory to the modern period in a number of different arts, but only had one or two examples for each era or technique.

The square across from the museum is a large park. I watched a team of kids trying to get a huge kite aloft. You see these things in the air from miles away, but it's hard to get a sense of the scale. The spool of string they were using must have been larger than a coffee can (remember when coffee came in cans?). There was also an unusually large chess set next to some tables where people were playing at conventional size. The taller pieces must have been a meter high.

In the evening, I wandered over to a babi guling (roast pig) restaurant. I asked if they had a menu and the waiter said "The menu is babi guling spesial." So I ordered one, and a Panda tea. Everything was good, except for the skin, which I thought needed a bit more frying. The Panda tea is very, very sweet.

For dessert, I stopped at Dunkin Donuts. Did you know that Dunkin is the world's largest donut and coffee chain, with over 16,000 locations worldwide? That's what my takeout bags claimed. Dunkin is one American fast food chain I visit when abroad (and I try to bring back large boxes of munchkins when I visit the east coast), since they don't have any locations near me. I have been to Dunkin Donuts shops on four continents now. They had some flavors of munchkins that I hadn't had before, but jelly was still the best. There was also this weird mochi ring. Like a half dozen pieces of mochi embedded in a donut. Interesting texture.

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