Our inaugural trip to Bali departed on 20 April – SHE would like to say a huge thankyou to the wonderful ladies who joined us on this trip. Our first 3 nights were spent in Jimbaran staying at the wonderful Intercontinental Hotel – we took full advantage of the hotel facilities (breakfast was a highlight – nice buffet!). Our ‘welcome to Bali dinner’ was held on the beach at Jimbaran’s best seafood restaurant Sharkey’s (and SHE’s not the only one who thinks so – these wonderful people win awards on a regular basis!). Natalie (our lovely Aussie co-owner / hostess with the mostess) was given the task of ordering for us – she delivered beautifully! The ladies worked their way through a feast of seafood – and of course no dinner would be complete without a band of wandering minstrels serenading the group! (In fact at one stage SHE wasn’t sure who was seranading who!)
Dinner at Sharkey's
We ate, we drank a cocktail or 5, we shopped and we ate (can’t get enough Nasi Goreng!). SHE made some time to give a little back too – we visited a local orphanage in Denpasar to see if we could share some joy – we’re still not sure who got the most pleasure out of our visit – the kids were amazing! We stopped at a local supermarket on the way and stocked up on pens, pencils, colouring books and…balls! Lots of them in all different sizes – these were a big hit with the kids (and with us!). We also discovered some hidden talents amongst our group – our lovely Trish delighted the kids with drawings of Aussie animals – well…we think that was a koala!
Trish & the kids
Suzanne & her new friend!
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands!
The days went by way too quickly for any of us – before we knew it we were on the road to Ubud. The stunning Maya Ubud Hotel was home to us for the next 3 days – it’s hard to describe the overwhelming sense of peace and tranquillity that washes over you when you arrive at the hotel – it is a truly magical place.
SHE had arranged a very special surprise for the ladies – a blessing and purification ceremony with the High Priest of Ubud. We were measured for traditional Balinese outfits when we arrived at the hotel (that were delivered to our rooms the next day). Two of the beautiful Balinese hotel staff came to our rooms to show us how to tie our sarongs – we felt like we were getting ready for a wedding…all chatty and giggly – making sure we had matching earrings and our best sandals!
Purification ceremony with High Priest of Ubud
Our resort guide Wayan accompanied us to the temple and was our translator throughout the ceremony. It was a truly moving and memorable morning – we left the temple a little lighter in spirit (definitely a little soggier after being doused in holy water!) It was an honour and a privilege to be a part of such an important cultural and spiritual experience.
Praying at the temple
Wayan leading the ladies in prayer