To some part of the world, this kind of roof has became history as it is not economic.
I am really greatful when I met the attap roof in Puri Wirata or Puri Tulamben Resort and Dive. The roof of its front desk and restaurant is an attap roof, I salute to the owner who take action to preserve ancient method of building the roof. With this kind of roof, the ceiling is not needed. The owner has added a layer of zink on top of the attap ( from the last photo I took ) to ensure the roof can last longer.
Bali has so many interesting building architecture, I will add more.
- Arts and Culture
Balinese beer & wine
The popular 4.7% refreshing pils Bintang (=star) is a Heineken twin... normal the brand is owned by Heineken and brewed in Surabaya since 1929.
Bali has also local wines. I taste some products from the Hatten winery located around Singaraja area with 14.5 hectares vineyards.
To drink in moderation as usual. Don't drink and drive or dive!
- Beer Tasting
- Wine Tasting
Island of the Gods
Bali is often named the island of the Gods. Although Indonesia is mostly Muslim, Hindu is prominent in Bali. Sacred rituals honour Gods, Nature, Man, Dead or Monks through a multitude of temples (more than 3000), statues of divinity, offering ceremony or religious procession.
Balinese Saka calendar based on lunar calculations has some important Hindu holidays. For example during the sacred celebration of Nyepi, which could be translating by the day of Silence, everybody have to stay silently at home without using electricity or fire. So apply the famous motto : Speech is silver, but silence is golden if you are on Bali at this moment.
- Arts and Culture
Understanding Hindu Symbolism - the Swastika
Visitors to Bali who have not been to India or other countries where Hinduism and Buddhism are practiced are sometimes surprised to see swastikas at the entrance to houses and temples. It is important to appreciate the meaning of the swastika in Hinduism. One translation from the original sanskrit is 'that which is associated with well-being'. So the swastika is a symbol of good luck - the clockwise bending of the arms is a charm to bring good fortune. In Bali you will see it on the mantle of many gateways. The swastika has both a clockwise and an anti-clock wise version in Buddhism. It was also used as a symbol for the sun in China, and forms of the swastika can be seen in many other cultures. So, when in Bali, the meaning of the swastika is in no way connected to the meaning implied by a European country who used it during the second world war.
- Arts and Culture
Be aware 'Hati hati, upacara disini'
When travelling in Bali one must always be aware that ceremonies and procession are a constant part of life - no matter what day of the week it is. In villages you will often see the sign 'hati hati, upacara disini' meaning 'take care, ceremony here'. As travellers we should always show respect to the local customs, and in this case, slow down when passing ceremonies, or wait patiently until processions pass. I am yet to hear of any 'public' ceremonies in Bali where it is forbidden to take photos - so while on the one hand ceremonies and especially processions can slow up the traffic, on the other hand, they also give you the opportunity to enjoy the color and beauty of the moment and take some photos without being invasive - just give a friendly smile and show your camera before taking a photo and an acknowledgement should be given about whether you can take a photo or not.
Which hand do you prefer?
- Arts and Culture
No news, not always good news
As you may eventually discover
while sojourning in Bali,
bad news is often kept a secret,
or lets say, not talked about.
This includes in newspapers too.
As a principle,
it is thought it better not
to communicate anything that
may damage Bali's success.
This may not be important to
the frequent Bali visitor since,
they prefer not to hear about it anyway.
(Check some of the forums
and notice how angry they get
when something not positive is mentioned)
But when sojourning here,
the not so good info,
can always prepare you
to know what to expect.
So if you happen to hear something
word of mouth,
maybe it should be paid attention too,
cause it may be the only way to hear about it.
So who is the Banjar?
If you decide to live here,
you will need to learn about the Banjar,
since your relationship with them
may have an important influence
on your well-being here.
All activities and responsibilities
of the banjar are guided by
the chosen village authority.
Depending on how active
the banjar committee is,
they will be i involved
with most activities concerning their village.
The banjar will hold a meeting,
attended by all the married men
each time an activity is to take place.
This can include fundraising,
building a school or adding to their temple.
The activity may be a cultural or
sporting event such as a dance performance.
On the anniversary of the Banjar,
all members are expected to attend.
Most activities will be carried out together,
working in a system known as gotong royong,
where everyone in the village participates.
The important thing is that each member is
seen by the banjar committee,
as absentees are noted and may be heavily fined.
The Banjar will attend in
religious ceremoniesweddings and cremations.
Being involved in so many activities,
the banjar takes on great responsibilities for its members.
It is expected, among other things,
to keep the area clean and disease free,
as well as handle environmental and social problems.
Banjar committees often address problems such as conflict,
social unrest and household disputes.
The division responsible has an abbreviated name:
The Siskamling, Hansip or Pecalang
address local safety issues,
some which are permanent and others which
are specific to an event, for example: Nyepi.
Whilst, the Posyandu takes care of infant health,
from weighing babies to immunization,
similar to Plunket in some western countries.
If driving, remember in Bali, if you run over a dog, it's not a problem but if you run over a chicken it's respectful to stay with the animal until it dies peacefully.
If you run over a local, leave town and the country as fast as you can unless you have lots of cash.
best of all, taxis are cheap, always take a metred blue cab, get a driver....around $40-50 US a day plus fuel.
- Road Trip
Another type of business
Bali has developed itself to rely
sooooo much on tourism,
that it can be a pretty desperate sight
when that sector of that business goes downs.
If you’re visiting Bali
and feel the hawkers are a bit heavy
in their constant demand of
trying to sell you something,
then you should have seen
what it was like after the bombs!
And it’s a bit difficult for most
Indonesians to conceive the future.
So, not until they are deep in problems,
do they even think of ‘options’.
With the market crises heading across the world,
a recommendation of urgency has been sent out.
Bali Needs a Diversified Economy
Gosh!! I really wish someone
would start producing organic rice milk!!!
With so much rice produced here,
and with a carton of imported rice milk
currently costing 30,000 rp the box,
it would be a positive gesture.
For women in their period
Because Bali is still quite a supernatural place actually. Therefore, there are several places, such as the Pura/ temple or other holy places, where women in their period are prohibited to enter such places.
- Arts and Culture
- Women's Travel
Reporters, keep out!
One of the most difficult visas
to obtain for Indonesia is the
one for journalist and reporting.
In a recent conference held with journalists
from 51 countries on September 2006,
along with the attendance of
President Susio Bambang Yudhoyono,
a conference was held to promote
a standard journalistic code of
conduct for reporting and
commenting on cultural issues.
The request was rejected by 76 national delegates.
Don’t insult me!
“Sticks and stones,
may break my bones,
but words will never hurt me”
does not necessarily apply to
the officials here in Indonesia.
Unlike, in western countries where,
freedom of speech is pushed to the extreme limits,
the Article 207 of the Criminal Code in Indonesia
is to protect the State Institution from being insulted.
Calling an official a dog, or a pig like in the US,
is considered a major insult in Indonesia.
Following the fall of the new order regime
restrictions of Freedom of Speech and Art
have been slightly lifted,
but can still cause a major stir.
As White as Snow
In Asia, the desire to have
a pearly white complexion
has evolved into a profitable industry.
Forget cultivating the sport, tanned look.
In this part of the world,
that is considered to be ‘dirty’.
So, Asian cosmetic shelves in the stores,
offer an endless array of choices of
facial masks, scrubs, body and face creams
all promising to whiten skin.
With no strict rules for product labeling
and no regulations required to manufactures
to prove that their cosmetics are effective or safe,
be warned that their have been some isolated findings
of products using mercury, chromium and neodymium.
Mercury blocks an enzyme that is
required for the formation of melanin,
the dark pigment of our skin.
But constant and heavy exposure
to mercury is dangerous.
It attacks the central nervous system
and can result in brain or kidney damage.
Chromium is carcinogenic and can cause eczema,
while neodymium, which is used in magnets,
can cause eye and skin irritations.
Which ever way the results are,
if regulations do ever come into place,
women in Asia, may just find themselves
having to turn to an age old home remedy
to temporarily whitening skin, and that’s yoghurt.
It’s all in Black & White
As you drive around Bali,
you will see very old trees dressed
with a black & white checkered skirt.
Usually, these trees are very sacred
and a place of worship
will be set up at the base of the trunk.
The black and white checkered poleng cloth
symbolizes good and evil forces in balance.
In many kingdoms
the king was encouraged to sire
numerous offspring with his multiple concubines
as proof of his continuity virility.
Most kings enthusiastically fulfilled this noble duty;
many Balinese claim descent from royalty
and rumors flourish of concubines
impregnated by the palace guards
of an elderly impotent king.
Most Balinese bearing the honorifics
Anak Agung or Agung Dewi are well respected
- Arts and Culture
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