Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunday in Ubud, Bali

Sunday, January 4th, Ubud, Bali

After yesterdays intense sightseeing we plan a relaxing day in Ubud.  A little before 11:00 A.M. we walk to Tabra’s work compound where John is immediately absorbed in her trays of stones, beads and cast components.  While Tabra, Art and I talk, John arranges abalone, a carnelian carved fish, a silver jaguar head,  bronze sun face and crescent shaped fire agate into a row. He shuffles his arrangement adding other castings and interchanging stones. Tabra takes interest and encourages his creativity. Just as in my studio, there are trays of oddities and pieces that need repair or are discontinued.  John hones in on a boulder opal and emerald bracelet connector and is admiring it. Tabra points out that the larger of the two boulder opals is cracked and that she will have to take the piece apart and redo it. John tells her it is beautiful just the way it is and she takes his hand in hers and folds his fingers around the piece, giving it to him.  John is thrilled and within a minute has engineered a cord to wear the piece as a necklace.

Tabra's Store on Hannamum Street
Arranging bead and stone components

It is Sunday and Dedi  has the day off so his father drives us to Hannamun street to drop us off in front of Tabra’s shop. I have been thinking about buying one of her gypsy skirts and slip into a rusty red and black skirt, sewn of printed Indian cotton that Tabra purchased on a recent trip to India.  I pay Tabra the family/friend price, exiting her shop feeling much prettier than when I entered in rolled up jeans. We exit and walk up Hannamum street, stopping into shops that interest us.  John and Art are usually a few shops ahead of Tabra and me but there is so much of interest that pace is easy and no one gets impatient.

We stop for lunch at a simple open air café. We order the usual, curried rice noodles with tofu, nasa goring, chicken curry, lime soda, lasses and special ice teas. My ice tea has two leeche fruits in it, is not too sweet and is oddly delicious. I order a second just so that I can have two more leeche fruits.

John, Bread Fruit, Ubud
Rock wall, Ubud Bali

After lunch we walk around the corner, up a side street and enter an upscale batik shirt shop. I remember being here 7 years ago. The shop is elegant and it is cool inside and the stacks of hand printed batik shirts are neatly folded and arranged by size. My fashion boy, John slips into several and preens in the mirror. He decides to buy a purple shirt and Tabra and I encourage Art to buy a more subtle, steel blue and brown shirt that will go well with both jeans and kaki brown pants. The shirts are about $35 each and I pass over my credit card and Art and John exit the shop wearing their new clothes.
Flower Mandala

We continue walking and shopping and cut along a side street to Monkey Forest Road where John remembers seeing a Barong Ring.  It is 4:30 and Tabra suggests a margarita and John and I concur.  It is happy hour and Art finds a café offering 2 for 1 margaritas and we sit down and order our drinks.  Service is “Bali time” and often frustratingly slow but we are eventually sipping on cool but smallish drinks.

At the bottom of Monkey Forest Road, John buy a high quality, sterling silver Garuda ring and bargains the price down from $10,000. to $8,000, or about $65.00. We take a taxi from Monkey Forest Road to the bottom of the stairs leading up to Penestanna.  Climbing the stairs gives Tabra and me a work out but we are rewarded by the Sunday night Bali buffet at the Yellow Flower Restaurant.  It is a full moon (or nearly one) and we sit at the edge of the terrace looking out over the valley and Ubud city below.  I am not thrilled with the banana leaf soup that is the first course and by the time we take our plates to the buffet, it is dark and difficult to see what I am spooning onto my plate. Nevertheless, it is a lovely balmy evening spent with our good friend Tabra underneath a full moon.  We walk the pathway back to our bungalow and say good night. Her walk from our bungalow to her house is less than 10 minutes and she tells us that she has no qualms walking alone at night; that Bali is safe. 

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