An early rise this morning, I take the last of the raspberry juice, why, I don’t know. I still feel the dire-rear is with me……. yep here it comes. On the toilet, just like an upside down volcano, I start to hum a Johnny Cash classic hmm hmm hmm “burning ring of fire”.
How am I going to travel nearly two hours to the Telega Waja river and then spend two hours floating on a raft on fast free-flowing liquid? I have a piece of toast for brekky and spend the next hour evicting angry tenants and exorcising demons from my body.
Our driver arrives and he is informed of my dire-rear, he understands and says “you let me know I will stop” We pass an Ace Hardware, I think to myself I should stop and buy a plug (or a bucket). There is some nice scenery along the way, especially the view of the rice paddies, palm trees and mountains in the background. It is a long drive, made longer by the fact that at any moment I could erupt.
We arrive at Alam’s start point, there is staff everywhere but not many seem to be doing much, a couple patch a raft (not ours I hope) and the other 30 watch. There is at least one more angry tenant that needs to be evicted, so I find the toilet, upon exiting said toilet, a crowd has gathered… crikey, I hope any noise and smell was not noticed. I tell the man waiting outside with his daughter that I have a bit of BB so I would give that toilet a miss for ten minutes or so, but he ignores my advice, and he sends his daughter in, total dis-regard for her safety, even after he was warned. He will NOT win Father of the Year.
We finally get our gear and walk through the rice paddy to the start point. Some people have a plastic bag with live fish in it. The young people behind us ask where ours is, I say we don’t have one, the young bloke smugly says “we must be special”. At that moment, “the chosen one” loses balance and drops his bag of fish, three of the five fish escape into the rice paddy, and most of the water is lost also. Me, Fred and Barney start p155ing ourselves laughing, and then help by spotting the fish for him, he steps into the rice paddy, grabs a fish, retracts his foot from the mud without his shoe attached. He is now missing two fish and one shoe, we point to another fish, but before he enters the mud he removes his remaining shoe, damn, he is smarter than he looks. He recaptures all but one fish and he does find his shoe after sinking his arm deep into the mud to retrieve it.
The special people with fish get to release them into the river before we begin rafting, including those that prematurely released them! I stop and think, what if one of those fish in the bag have dire-rear like me? Picture that.
We push off and commence our journey, it’s Fred and Barneys first time rafting, and already they have a smile on their faces, this is my second time rafting, and also my second time rafting with dire-rear. It is pleasant with nice scenery but after half an hour I’ve had enough, I don’t feel well, my back is sore (spinal problems) but I have another two hours to go. The boys are enjoying it, Fred is impressed with the scenery, cliffs and waterfalls etc. A couple of rapids almost tossed me out, I don’t know how I stayed in, as 97% of my body was outside the raft.
We stop for a well earned break, a nice spot with a small waterfall, a Bintang would be lovely but a lemonade will have to do. Back in the raft and off we go, we still have the dam to do yet, a 4 metre drop. The Guide tells us which positions we should all adopt whilst going over the drop, the moment arrives we go over, we hit the bottom, I snap in half, I could kiss my toes at one point, but we survive. We just cruise the last few hundred metres, Barney relaxes and lays down with his head out of the raft close to the water, then “Whack!” Our guide slaps the water with his paddle right next to Barneys head, well, for a moment I wasn’t the only one in the raft that might soil themselves. Barney looks at the guide in shock and looking for answers, the Guide just says “crocodile” with a massive smile on his face. We all have a good laugh at Barneys expense and give the Guide the thumbs up.
We finish the rafting, get changed, I test their toilet, then head up for lunch. I am starving but can’t eat through fear of soiling myself, but I manage a spoonful of white rice, just to ease the rumbling belly. Back to the car, and I get some sleep on the drive back to the hotel.
We have short break at the hotel, more toilet time, before we head up to Legian to collect our paintings from Julio. He has done a wonderful job on the family portrait, it was very surreal seeing it at first…. that’s us… in an oil painting. Julio wraps all our paintings up we say good-bye and head north to Seminyak. I really want to keep on the move, not knowing where the next toilet is, plays on your mind, but I like to live on the edge, push the limits, a lesser man would be back at his hotel, not me, …..I am a complete…. idiot.
Not far up the road I get the urge, The Haven is just there, what an apt name at this moment. We go in have a seat order drinks and I go and test their toilet. We have our drinks and they cost about $20 so decide to get my monies worth and return for seconds…. to the toilet. It seems like a nice hotel, not for young kids though, lots of water features around, and some stairs.
We now catch a cab to Schappelles house, Fred and The Wife are keen to see it, traffic is shocking but we get there. What a terrible, run down place it is, if it’s that bad outside you could only imagine the inside. We enter the car park at the entrance, The Wife gets out to get photos, she goes up to the door which has a note on it, written in Indonesian. She takes a photo and returns, I have a look at it, my Indo is average but can normally get an idea of what it says. I can only understand a few words, so just tell The Wife it says “Photography of this area is illegal and carries the death penalty”.
After accepting my punishment we head back to Seminyak, I noticed a shop named Bad Face that I bought good quality stuff from 18 years ago, but it was in Jl Melasti then. It’s not the same, very pricey and not the same stuff or quality and only two 10 or 12 year old kids to serve? us.
We decide to go back to Beras Merah at Adhi Jaya (where we stayed first) for another metre of satay for dinner, our favourite meal this trip. I manage to eat three chicken sticks (no satay) and only two trips to the toilet. We say our final and emotional good-byes to these wonderful people that made our stay there very memorable and enjoyable.
We then do some final shopping, a new case from Chris’s more Beats and sunnies for the kids. We go for a massage at Merrys but there is an hour wait so just head back to the Holiday Inn. Tomorrow is our last day in Bali, let’s hope it is a good one.
That also means one more JBR.... hooray.