The past week I have been met with a series of costly misadventures (I blame it all on Australian dentists charging outrageous prices) that have led me to Indonesia and last night was the first night in a week I have had to truly relax. The restaurant where I ate displayed this thought-provoking picture:
Woke up to my first morning in the world’s largest Muslim nation, though this trip I am in a corner that mixes Muslim with Hindu, Buddhist and animist traditions – Bali. As I stepped out of my very basic but comfortable enough hotel I walked into the following:
It’s a cremation ceremony. Ngaben (pronounced Nah-Ben). I’ve seen a few of these now so I did not wait to see all the doings right through this time. This was the first time I got close enough on the beach to see the body, however. No doubt wishing to look directly into my own mortality. An old man. It was a good seeing so many taking great care to give him a reverential send-off. Not too many years and I’ll be like him. I left smiling, warmly assured. He was so peaceful and loved.
I always dreamed of coming to Bali and getting locked in as a result of a volcanic eruption that would not allow my flight to return to Australia. But catching a cold while stuck here was definitely not part of that plan. Since the pace has slowed, however, I have time to post a few more scenes:
A procession to a local temple:
Entering the temple gate . . . . Continue reading “More Scenes from Bali”
Sitting in a pleasant warung one morning when I heard clanging of gongs and rhythm of drums; looked out to see a street procession . . . .
On asking the waitress I learned it was a cremation and I could go and see the ceremony on the beach just around the corner.
Come to Bali! Relax on the beaches. Witness cremations.
By the time I arrived the body had been taken down from its carriage; some of those in the procession were sheltering in the shade.
Others were crowding around the body to lay on it their parting gifts and offerings. Continue reading “Cremation on a Bali Beach”
Strolling though Sanur, Bali, last night I was lucky enough to catch a Balinese dancer informally, that is, not for public showing. – I at first thought she was practising, but that makes it sound like work. It looked more like she was enjoying dancing for no other reason than that she loved it.