18/11/11 – Friday

The day starts with a well paced morning beach-walk from Seminyak to Kuta. I’d almost worn the fact that I’d been to Bali but never visited Kuta like a badge of honor, but having been taxied from the airport to Seminyak via Kuta, the war had been lost.

Part of President Obama's security posse for ASEAN

It is blisteringly hot – even at 8am this morning. I’m in a healthy lather of sweat after only 5 minutes of walking. The beach is full of people jogging, walking for exercise, walking for their morning constitutional and there are those merely strolling along. The tide has abated, leaving a firm stretch of sand for what appears to be the entire peninsula. The beach, in different areas of Legian is already seeing serious sun seekers setting up their positions for the day. There are also a few of the surf schools getting their trainees ready to hit the water. It is a holiday makers mecca and an oasis of sun, surf and fun, however, the sight of a U.S warship stationed strategically about 5km’s from the shore out in Bali Straight/Selat Bali is a solemn reminder of the heightened security presence on the Island for ASEAN.

I walk for around an hour and a bit, determined to keep moving and stop my back from seizing up. When I return to the Pelangi, I meet Ms Emma for brekky and take the opportunity to catch up on emails and have a look at Twitter now that we have a more reliable internet connection.

Later that morning, we have a meeting booked with the function coordinator at one of Bali’s best Bar/Nightclub’s; Ku De Ta. We’re hoping that we can have our wedding here at KDT; it is one of the most amazing places on the island and has – dare I say it – one of the most relaxed vibes you are ever likely to experience. It is unimaginable that something like KDT could exist anywhere in Australia. While there are armed guards out the front of the venue, there’s no bouncers to speak of inside the actual bar. Unimaginable in Australia these days…

We meet with Carolien, the new events coordinator at Ku. Ms Emma has done some press work for the venue for around a year or so and knows a number of the staff there, which we hope will add to the likelihood of getting (perhaps) a slightly better than standard deal for having our wedding there. The meeting begins with the standard bonhomie and soon we’re down to brass tacks. We remark later that Carolien was doing little or no writing as we discussed with her what we’d like to create with our wedding and the parts of the venue we hoped to use. We agree later she either has a stellar memory, or – as we would later learn – she knew something she wasn’t telling us. Sadly (from our perspective anyway), we leave the meeting agreeing that we didn’t really feel much enthusiasm from the venue for us having our wedding there.

Dinner that night is at Gado Gado restaurant, about two doors down from The Pelangi in Seminyak. The food here is excellent and I recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a fine dining experience while in Bali and you have a bit of cash at your disposal. The menu has Western as well as Balinese and Indonesian dining options. Gado was renovated only recently and the results are spectacular. We have a 3 course meal and wine, with the bill coming to around $AUD75. The equivalent at any Australian restaurant would have been $AUD160, easily. The only downer with Gado is that while located directly on Seminyak beach, the surrounding greenery and garden design tends to shelter you from the cool evening breezes, so it’s not unusual to see even the staff breaking out a sweat, and not because they’re busy. When we arrive, we’re one of maybe four tables with guests seated. When we leave, the entire outdoor area of approximately 30 or so tables is almost full. I’m glad. The people are Gado are good people and its nice to see that people are getting to experience their hospitality.

Once again, sleep comes easily that night in the coolness of the room.


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