My older sister said to mum "I need to get away" :( so they started planning an escape from reality.
New Zealand? no, maybe next year.
Europe? hmm to much hard work.
India!!! maybe, maybe... again to much hard work and not long enough to plan.
The list went on for a few days until mum rings "guess where we're going? Bali of course!"
I swear mum should just move over there, this was her third trip in less than nine months.
Jealous much?? Hell yes!!
They were leaving in less than two weeks.
Little sis Lisa and I were hanging out one day, mucking around I said "we could go if we wanted to, just for a few days even"... "yes we could" says Lisa. We both know we can't, work and family commitments, plus the fact we are going for three weeks in July ensure that it won't happen.
A few days later I get a phone call from Lisas husband "what you up to Deb Deb?".. "housework why?"
He tells me Lisa doesn't know he is ringing, but they had been talking the night before and Lisa really wants to go to Bali, but only if I go. He has come up with a clever plan, he'll come over and stay with my kids so I can go. OMG how sweet is my brother in-law? I tell him he is gorgeous, but I can't go. My hubby has been away from home for almost 12 months and we still have a couple of months before he will be home, it just felt unfair to leave the kids parentless. I'm already booked for July and we don't have a money tree! He tells me to think about it.
Lisa and I talk the next day, she had no idea her hubby had rung me and we decide 'no we are not going'.
Then a couple of days later on the 26th of February my new hero gabbyo puts a post on the Bali TripAdvisor forum entitled " JetStar sale from Sydney and Melbourne"
We could get fares for $352 return each (including taxes) , within a day it was obvious that the kids and bank balance would survive. Still feeling a little guilty we booked for seven nights, we only had a week before we left!!
We decided not to tell mum and older sister, it would be fun to surprise them, not been able to tell anyone on the forum or share the excitement with mum and older sis was hard!
We would spend two nights in Kuta at Jepun Hotel before we surprised them at Champlung Sari in Ubud, then onto Sanur at Oasis Lagoon Hotel.
At the airport accusations from 14 year old Tannalee of "I can't believe both my parents have abandoned me" gave way to hugs and kisses. With our last goodbyes Tanna even handed over her favourite beaded bangle for me to wear.... and we were off.
I hate flying so took my tablet and spent the trip in a half sleepy state, we stayed in the air until landing and that's all I ever ask of a flight so no complaints from me.
Airports are airports I've never bothered to time how long it takes to get out. In the immigration line the guy behind asks us to mind his bag while he goes to find his girlfriend, she is getting their visas. That's the second time someone has done this. Seriously people I know we are friendly, but you don't know us and we don't know you! What part of keep your bags with you at all times do these people not understand?? Lisa says okay but I think whatever happens we are not going near that bag, if he's not back in time it will be waiting in line all by itself!
We emerge and grab a taxi rp 50,000 to Kuta
I'd read about Jepun Hotel on TripAdvisor, PerthLovetotravel had asked about it so I got as much info as I could from PLTT, then I went investigating on the net. I don't like Kuta, I figured if I have to stay there Jepun looked like a nice little bolt hole.
It's dark and the taxi driver has no idea where to go, luckily I knew it was almost opposite Kartika Plaza behind the school. Lisa spots the hotel sign at the gang entrance and we double back .
The gang is dark and lonely, hazy lamp poles light the way giving it a movie set ambience.
I loved the gang, Jepun and Kuta are so far removed from each other it seems entirely possible to me that the gang is a a corridor to another dimension. Like that Studio Ghibli film Spirited Away.
The taxi pulls up and a young girl gently approaches us with the greeting of "Deborah?" With my reply of yes she welcomes us and introduces herself as Donna.We walk up the stairs arguing with Donna who wants to carry our bags. In the foyer sits an older lady who puts her hand on her chest and pronounces Mama. I'm already in love with this hotel.
Mama is watching some TV drama, Lisa says " everyone's always crying on Bali TV" Mama agrees "yes always big drama on Bali TV"
Next morning the Jepun Foyer
Gang Kuta Pura on the way to Kuta Jepun hotel
Directly across form Jepun driveway
Very funny it says 'no pain no tattoo'.
Mr Frog tattoo shop was opposite this sign and we had to pass the group of young men sitting out the front every time we walked up the gang. Not once was there a smart comment or laughing behind our backs, a nice change for Kuta boys.
Our room number 7 on the left, they are building behind us but we heard no noise. When they are finished building the new rooms they are knocking down these two rooms. I think it will be really nice. We looked in the windows and the new rooms which will be deluxe are gorgeous.
Our standard room, is so clean!! The door squeaks really loudly in the morning so I grab our can of Bug Off and spray the hinge. Ha ha the squeak bugs off.
Old but very clean
View from the pool, the water was really warm,
I loved it but Lisa thought it was to warm
Deluxe room B1 down stairs really nice out look
In front of B1
I forgot my door block so we put our room service plates in front of the door as a type of alarm ha ha
I was impressed by how well the grounds are kept,
even behind the buildings it was clean and tidy.
Standard rooms are one level, deluxe are in the two level buildings
Shrine outside deluxe room A1 and next to Standard room 1, a gorgeous little corner.
Standard rooms #1 through to #4 are in a lovely spot # 5 and #6 are to close to the new building for me, they have little privacy at the moment but that might change??
View from our room #7 which we loved
On the left is standard room #6 and the rooms at the back are the new rooms, not open yet.
That first night we ventured up the gang for dinner and supplies. We were ready for a scary walk but we got a real surprise, it was much shorter than we remembered, the most worrisome part was me tripping on the speed bumps, slow down Deb!
I'm sure it takes longer to go from Kuta to Jepun, than it does to get from Jepun to Kuta.
We decide on pizza as most places are closing. Kebab Palace seems as good as it gets tonight.
Pizza was yummy!! Pizza rp 48,000
Near the gang entrance
Breakfast at Jepun is simple but enough for me
although our pancakes were all gooey and not cooked in the middle
Walking towards Kuta Square
Kuta Square to the left
Went to Matahari, we bought new make-up and shoes:)
Orange Fizz drink yum yum.
I decided on this trip to try new drinks and food. Orange fizz was the first, not very game I admit but I had no idea what would be put in front of me :)
We got a taxi to Seminyak Lisa wanted to go to a particular DVD shop so the cab drops us off where she asks and we spend about 20mins walking before she announces we must of missed it! So we spend another 20mins backtracking, it's all good though as there is plenty to see.
Walking around Seminyak
Lunch at Lanai on Double Six with a view of the beach and our new sunnies.
A small glass bottle of aqua cost us 22,000 we should of checked the menu!!
A small glass bottle of aqua cost us 22,000 we should of checked the menu!!
Lunch was delicious and the setting was lovely Saytay RP 58,000 Chicken Caesar RP 54,000 water 22,000!!
I think this was the 101 hotel?? cool pool, Lisa says amazing view from up there she looked at it in December.
Front entrance Discovery Shopping Mall,
is this also known as Kartika Plaza??
After the above photo we head back to Jepun, on the way we pass a group of about ten boys who look to be under the age of 13 years. They are western tourist, sound like Aussies and there is not a parent in sight. It's dark and they are in a big group crossing the road in front of Bubba Gumps is this for real? Where are their parents? Who lets their kids wander the streets of Kuta after dark? Hopefully they had just wandered ahead of the adults, but it didn't look like they were with anyone to me.
Had room service the second night
Leaving Kuta to head up to Ubud the traffics not to bad it's about 9.00am. Lady in the middle of the road making an offering, we wonder why she is doing this, is this a bad intersection?
Next 3 nights at Champlung Sari where we gave mum and sis a BIG surprise and I have to face my fear of monkeys. I fight the monkeys for my breakfast and veranda rights!
We visit Jazz Cafe and Sari Organic for the first time, have a black bottom tart at Kafe Batan Warang for about the fifth time and thanks to ubudpuppy on TripAdvisor forum we visit Campuhan temple, the pretty little temple opposite Bridges restaurant.