So it's been a while since I've been back to Bali and things have changed sooo much in such a short time!
This time, we went back with baby and my parents.
Our plane arrived late - because we left late from Singapore, so we "lost our spot" and didn't have an aerobridge to connect to and ended up having to take the bus - which was quite OK because it brought us straight to the immigration counter!
So after a long wait - mainly for my husband, we took a cab and spent our first night in Febri's.
The room as OK, they provided a baby cot but it was more like a playpen with a mattress. It was a little hard - you could feel the slats at the bottom, so I ended up putting a blanket I had brought to soften the "bed".
Breakfast was also OK, and I think that overall, it is value for money.
I had never stayed there before and would definitely stay there again.
After breakfast, we were picked up and went to bvilla. I had booked a 2 bedroom villa with a nice private pool because I wanted my parents to have a great holiday and enjoy themselves. The last time they were there was 20 years ago.
The villa was nice, they provided a decent bed - it was old but it made do. The sides of the bed could be opened (not slide down/up) and so you can use it for an infant as well as a toddler.
I had also hired some things from balibaby.com, which had already been delivered to the villa before I arrived.
Now www.baibaby.com made a mistake in the stroller I had hired. I had asked for a three wheeler, but I got a 4 wheeler. I tried to contact the owner but could not read her. I rang the company, but they just said that the boss told them to deliver the items, which was what they did.
So I decided that I would just forget it and use the 4 wheeler. I also noticed that they had forgotten the rain cover, but by that time, I didn't want my parents to know that anything was amiss and our driver was coming to pick us, so I just left it at that.
Then Surya (recommended by Dean) came and picked us up. We went to Ketupat for lunch and then we headed to Dreamland and Uluwatu, etc. I thought that it would be nice to show my parents the beach and etc, as we had planned for Ubud the following day.
My father has difficulty walking and Dreamland was a BAD idea. I didn't know that he had that much difficulty as I have seen him walk around in Singapore and after all, the slope to the beach is not that steep, BUT I think with the heat and all that, it was a killer. My father asked Surya how far it was to walk and Surya said 150m, so my dad said, no problem. BUT at the end, I really, really panicked (HUGE lesson learnt here!!!) because I thought that he was going to have a heart attack!!!
When we got back into the car, we quickly passed him the some cold water to drink and changed plans - and decided to go to Uluwatu temple - at least no gravel, and flat with steps, which he could manage. And, as usual, I had warned them about the monkeys and told them to be careful.
My father almost got his glasses stolen - even though I had warned him more than 5 times to be careful and even advised him to remove his glasses. He removed his sunglasses and then when they came near him - and we could see that they wanted to snatch his prescription glasses, he said, stupefied, "You mean they also want these kind of glasses?" Sigh. We also felt that the monkeys are a lot more aggressive now than before, baring their teeth when they couldn't get what they wanted.
Surya, when he noticed the monkeys being a bit too bold, tried to scare them off - thank goodness for his initiative! My husband and I also tried to shoo them away, but it was more difficult for husband who also had the baby with him.
Now the steps are also higher than normal, so for those with problems walking/knee problems, this is not so good. I just told my father to be careful, which he did.
After that, we headed back to Seminyak. We had a lovely dinner at Chandi. It was cheaper than Ketupat! LOL! And my, that whole street has changed!
When I got back to the villa, I found out that balibaby.com had dropped off the rain cover. So they did forget it after all and brought it over later.
The next day, Dean came to pick us and now knowing my father's condition, we decided to just head to Ubud centre for some shopping and then try some coffee. So we went to Tropical (I think that's the name, I can't remember) for lunch and then my mother and I went shopping whilst my father and husband walked and looked at the shops and then went for coffee.
We met up with them later and because my father is a coffee drinker, let him try the luwak coffee.
Then we headed back to Seminyak and wanted to go to Made's Warung for dinner. We got there and it was so crowded that we got turned away - no seats available. So we went to Mykonos and food there is good and reasonable, as always.
Third day, I took my parents to Centro - easy walking for my father - with air con - although a bit hot) and escalators. After that, my mother and I went shopping and husband, baby and grandpa went back to the villa.
We went to Made's Warung for dinner and were lucky because there was a dance performance that night and my parents enjoyed it then we headed back to the villa after that.
The next day, we chilled out at the villa and met a friend who came with his baby and then we made our way back to the airport. :-(((((
All in all, it was a good trip. I overestimated what my father could do, but at least, now I know. So I hope that my mistake can help someone else avoid doing the same thing!
We didn't do the traditional stuff because my parents had also said that they didn't want to visit temples, see rice fields (they said that they had seen all of that and yes, they have travelled all over the world), etc, etc, but then, when they saw the dance, they liked it and they even liked the surroundings of Ubud! Pah.
When I got back to Singapore and checked my mail, I realised that www.balibaby.com had sent me an email apologisng for the mix up of the stroller and they were very professional because they said that I didn't have to pay for it. However, I had left the money at the villa for them, so they gave me a credit, which I guess I will use the next time I head back out there. :-)
The Good: (from a mother's point of view now!)
For all the places, there were baby chairs/high chairs except at the food court at Centro/Discovery Mall.
I rented a steriliser, stroller and got a packet of nappies from www.balibaby.com I really liked what that they had and went with them instead of the other company only because they had a steriliser that I was familiar with and their strollers came with rain covers.
The Balinese - they are just as lovely as always. I know that they love babies, but now that I have my own, I really appreciate it as they were more than willing to take him from me and I could do some shopping. ;-)
Traffic was TERRIBLE. it didn't happend to me, but someone got stuck in traffic and it took them 3h from Jimbaran to Seminyak in the afternoon.
It was hot, hot, hot.
There were fireworks - now this is not really a bad point, In fact, it's a good point, BUT if you have a baby who is a light sleeper, I think it's best to avoid going to Bali at this time of the year as the fireworks were going off every night - at least, we heard and saw them from bvilla. I was lucky because my baby slept through it all. So I guess this is seeing it from a mother's point of view now! LOL!
All in all, well, we love Bali and baby had a good flight, so we are planning our next trip!!!! But we are squeezing in WA in June, so we may make a side trip to Bali.... or go there before then!!!