Category Indonesia

Sounds of This Place: Bali

On his way home from surfing one day, KC switched on his recorder as a funeral procession passed on the street.  This quote from Desmond Slade, a South African expat living in Bali, discusses the recurrent ceremonies on Bali: Visitors may be perplexed by the numerous street processions and the little offerings left at seemingly […]

Will the Real Bali Please Step Forward

I’m sitting on our couch on a Friday morning, glumly inspecting an injured toe (grace is not my middle name), when Made (MAH-day), the groundskeeper for the 3-bungalow complex where we are living, kicks off his shoes and steps into our house unannounced. Without saying a word, he peers into our water dispenser then lifts […]

Traveling Like a VIP

“Bandar Sri Indah?” We poked our head into the doorway of a midsized bus, careful to avoid inhaling the sooty black emissions drifting toward us from the rear. We’d just flagged the bus… actually, we’d just flagged 5 buses… to ask whether it was going our way. And like the others before him, this driver […]

An Open Letter to President Obama

Dear President Obama: On September 25, 2014 the day after you addressed the United Nations General Assembly, I read a transcript and this caught my eye: “If we lift our eyes beyond our borders – if we think globally and act co-operatively – we can shape the course of this century as our predecessors shaped […]