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Saturday, April 7, 2012

5) Sanur: swimming, shopping, eating and staying at an ugly hotel

When I think of Sanur I think of this

another scene that would pop into my head

and another....

 anyone for a swim??

When I think of Sanur I think of flat easy walking, calm clear waters and golden sand....

 ... until this trip gaol cells and zoo cages had never entered the Sanur equation.

Welcome to Oasis Lagoon, the hotel that has cages for balconies

This is actually a balcony,
 they don't even have chairs, you have to sit on the floor.

The rooms crowd around the pool and each other. No matter where you look all you see are balconies that look like cells. We had booked a direct access pool room, but when we first arrived the porter took us to one of the rooms you can see in the photo below (at the back of the deck chairs around the pool). 

We opened the shutters and pointed to the rooms across the pool and said "sorry but we want one of those rooms, this isn't direct access" The guy was really nice as he tried to convince us this was direct access, oh I don't think so mister! I felt sorry for him, they must get people complain all the time. 

We have learnt in Bali that when it comes to rooms you really do have to stand your ground.
 Lisa and I only had to look at each other to know either we get one of those rooms or we we're leaving.

We got the room we wanted then went to the front desk and told them our Ibu was arriving tomorrow and she would want a room like ours.

Our direct pool access room, nice as long as......

you don't look up

The pool was so narrow maybe 10/12 feet wide max? all the way around.

 hello neighbour..
well really, it's not like you 'need' any privacy on your balcony is it

Gorgeous pool

 like we kept on saying to each other just don't look up......

view from the water

Okay so our room wasn't so bad if we kept the shutters closed and didn't look up while swimming

we even had a 'special' toilet

Lobby was lovely, huge and open,
 but a lot of wasted space that could of been utilised around the pool

We settled into our room and decided to go for a walk

out the front of the hotel

Our hotel
Oasis Lagoon next door to Hardy's ( big yellow sign)

The main road in Sanur where our hotel was and a lot of the beachfront hotels back onto.
  Jalan Danau Tambling

The lane way to Bonsai Cafe

Walk through here to the beach, I think it is blocked off since our trip for building works?

Some weird signs in Bali that's for sure!

Bonsai trees at the cafe

Finally the beach!!

Bonsai cafe

The waitress slowly, slowly makes her way over, gives us a menu then stands by while we look. We say we'll just order a drink first then figure out what to eat.

Toes in the sand:)

Lisa and Debbie chilling in Sanur

The drinks came but the waitress never came back, we couldn't even see anyone to catch their eye. We decide to move on. There are so many places to eat and cruising around Sanur with nothing to do is half the fun.

We head along the path towards Griya

Crazy people with green hats on for Saint Patrick's day

We walked out the back of Griya to check out where we are staying in July

The driveway to Griya, this is where Ravens nest Villa sits.

This is Ravens Nest, Lisa said she saw someone up the stairs and later I wondered if it was Whinnie? Did we stalk her without even realising it??
Whinnie says it wasn't her ...LOL
I decided that night I'm not telling my exact villa dates for my next trip!!

Took this lane back to the main street

Fat little dog looked very relaxed

Found a new supermarket and stocked up on munchies

Sausages in a packet 
I know I was going to try lots of new tastes this trip, but I just couldn't! 

my munchies

Back for a swim and I get on the net, trying as hard as I can to find any agent that has a vacancy at The Griya.
Spending time on the beach makes us dislike this hotel even more, Lisa agrees if I can get a room at Griya we'll move. I can't, it's completely booked up.
I bet that American lady from Champlung Sari got the last room, me and my big mouth!!
We had said Griya or stay, so we stay and are just thankful it's only for a couple of nights

Lisa almost drowns

If you swim to the end of this photo and make a right hand turn there is a bridge. There is no airspace between the bridge and the water, so if you wanted to swim under this bridge you would have to hold your breath all the way, wouldn't you Lisa?

Now some of us swim a lot and some of us don't. Some of us love to dive while others haven't done that kind of thing since they were a kid.
Some of us have the good sense not to swim under an unfamiliar bridge with no airspace, while others say " I can do that"
When in reality they can't, can they Lisa?

 Lisa and I are happily swimming around, bagging the hotel. When we get to the bridge, we wonder why they didn't build it with some clearance so you can swim under it? We wonder why there are rolls of clear plastic on either side. We hang around the dead end and stick our legs under the bridge, just because we can.
 I say "Imagine if you went to swim under and the other side was blocked with clear plastic or something"
"no you can swim through" says Lisa.
"How do you know?"
"well why would they block it off ?"
 Hmm "true, but still imagine if you got stuck under there"

 I'm thinking to myself, there is no way that someone isn't going to drown under there one day, it is really dangerous. I mean it's not very wide, maybe eight feet? but if you have ever swum under a boat or similar you'll know it's a bad feeling to be totally cut off from the air, even for a few feet it can be very disorienting.

When all of a sudden Lisa says "I'm going to do it!" and pops under water.

Now I know Lisa doesn't swim very often and I know what it's like to swim/dive under things. I feel sick straight away and stick my head underwater to watch her. I'm holding my breath and it's getting short, in my head I think "shit, shit, I can't reach her to grab her. I'm going to have to swim under and pull her out, bloody IDIOT!!!!"

Next thing she does this weird under water twist and all these bubbles are rushing towards me. I stick my head up to get more air and suddenly she appears. Gasping for air, water is streaming out of her nose and mouth, "you bloody idiot, I can't believe you just did that!"
 She just looks at me with those big blue eyes and more water comes out of her nose.
 Yes we burst out laughing, because we don't want to cry!

After that Lisa kept telling scary stories about people who drown under the bridge and haunt the pool, they grab you by the ankle, drag you around the corner and under the bridge.

We stay away from the bridge.

The pool guys seemed to be there all the time, even walking through the garden to get leaves and things off our veranda while we were sitting out there!

Lisa giving the hotel the thumbs down

Lisa puts her little dog that she bought at Sukawati markets into guard dog mode for the night.

We head out to Mona Lisa for an early dinner.
 I had three restaurants in my mind to try this trip. I knew they were from someone's blog and I was almost positive that one of these restaurants had been touted as having "the best cream brulee ever!"

The restaurants were Mona Lisa, CharMing and Warung Little Bird

 I don't usually go by lists and prefer to discover things on my own but in this case there was the matter of dessert.

So yes eggumwest it was your blog! at the time I thought it was gabbyo or brisbanyLizzy, I even got online to try and check out their blogs. To no avail, the magical cream brulee evaded me this trip but now I know better and I will be back to try it at CharMing in July!!:)

 I LOVE cream brulee, when I sit down to dinner the first thing I do is check the dessert menu, so far not one restaurant we had been to had cream brulee.

Dinner at mona lisa
with Lisa :)

Complimentary bruschetta

OMG it might not be creme brulee but this gado gado was divine
 I can't wait to go back for more!!!

Stomachs full and tastes buds in heaven it was onto the Retro Bar and Restaurant for happy hour
Happy hour is from 2pm till 8 pm, from memory all cocktails are 35,000rp I think?

I had a mudslide

One is enough for me, so it's more like happy 30mins:)

Hello baby, sorry we have no food and you aren't getting any of my mudslide!

That night there was the most incredible thunderstorm I have ever heard. Lisa and I were both disappointed that we didn't get to experience it from the balcony in Ubud. Looking up through the cages  sure didn't do it justice! 
Our doors were shaking and the rain hit the doors so hard that the water was coming in under them, it really was an amazing night, not much sleep to be had, the thunder echoing through the tunnel that was Oasis Lagoon seemed to shake the very foundations.

The next morning mum and Joanne are arriving from Ubud so we go to the front desk to check on their room. I tell them my mother won't be happy if she doesn't get a room like ours, around the back with direct access. Then Lisa asks if they can have the room next to us and gives them the room number. They try and put us off but Lisa is determine, and magic! yes the room next door will be vacant today:)

We then go walkabout, checking out a few hotels.
 One was the Parigata I'd been interested about this place for a while 

The garden was lush but I wouldn't stay here over the beachfront hotels.

We look at lots of menus along the way, but none of them have cream brulee for tonight :(

One of my favourite shops 'Rita Gift Shop' fixed price but they always give a discount.
This time I bought a highly glazed green pottery bowl, LOVE it! (I'll put it on my shopping page)
From the shop on the left I bought a fish that hangs in my tree and catches the wind.

At Cafe Batu Jimbar there was a fresh food market on (Sunday mornings) we decided to buy a few things to try, without asking what they were:)

We arrive back at the hotel to see mum and Joe sitting in the foyer. They have been shown a couple of rooms and like the one Lisa got for them.

We tell them about the food market, they go and buy a little taste adventure then meet us on our verandas. We sit and talk about the hotel while tasting our surprises then decide to head over to Toot Sie and the beach markets.

 Sanur Beach path

When we are heading down to Toot Sie  a group of ladies from the beach markets starts to follow us, "you come to my my shop" etc. etc. so we say no we aren't going to the market, which at that point we weren't. Later they tell us off when they see us with shopping bags, whatever!

Toot Sie fixed price shop, we bought a few things.

I want to go for a swim so we agree on Bennos for lunch.
 Of course as we are walking back a different group of ladies ask us " you come to my shop" ect. ect. This is all okay for now, but I know it doesn't matter what I do someone is going to get annoyed with me. Either I won't look in their shop or I won't buy anything if I do look, you really can't win your damned if you do, damned if you don't.
 I'm sick of it and told my new friend Nyoman from shop 88 as much. I said to her "do you know people are starting to talk about the market ladies from Sanur?" 
I told her how people are talking on the forums and travellers are starting to say stay away from the markets because the ladies get so mad with you. She promised not to get mad with me....LOL "Okay I'll remember number 88 " I have found that to be the best way agree to visit one or two shops remeber their names and shop numbers.

Bennos for lunch right at the entrance to the beach markets!

The water at Sanur, looks good to me

Come on in Lisa!!

Me in the water...it's nice.

Looking back at Bennos

My satay yum!

Who had this? not so yum.

We all wanted to try chilli crab so ordered one for the centre of the table. hardly any meat, pretty much a waste of money.

The markets

Nyoman from shop 88 is waiting for me and I'm surprised when she mentions she has thought about what I said. She says she is sorry if the ladies ask to much but if they don't' ask no one will come to their shop. We talk about it and I say it's okay to ask, it's when some ladies get nasty when we don't buy anything, that's when it's not nice.
 Nyoman says "yeah okay, I not get cranky, I promise"
I hope more tourist pass on this message in a nice way and maybe they aren't fixed price but they could be known as the ladies who don't get angry. So tell Nyoman from shop 88 I sent you because she won't get angry if you don't buy anything! 
Not sure if it's true though because I did buy something ...LOL 

Lisa saw this frog and I said wow I love it, she didn't make a move so I bought it! Then later she was saying how I could give it to her for her birthday, no way sister. I'm not lugging that home for a gift, if you you want it you buy it now and carry it home yourself!
So she bought it off me, she had seen it first and I kind of pushed in, so it was only fair:)

Hey puppy Lisa has something for you

That yucky dish from Bennos went to a good home

The Tandjung Sari Hotel has dance lessons for youngsters a few times a week I've seen them before it's very cute and they are happy for your kids to join in

Showed mum and Joe Ravens Nest villa
 we are all really excited to stay here so I hope I have the right place?

We head back for a swim in the pool and Lisa says "lets take a photo of our hands" 
I have the bangles on see the white one Tannalee gave me at the airport for good luck:)
Then clock wise Mum, Lisa and Joanne at 3 o'clock.

Shazam girl power!!

We go to The Retro Bar and Restaurant for dinner, sitting out the back with a local band playing live music made for a really chilled evening. We actually enjoy the music and the laid back vibe better than the much rated Jazz Cafe in Ubud.

Our happy hour drinks mine is the green Grass Hopper yum yum yum!!

Pizza! I can't remember what everyone had, but we all enjoyed it.

A second round was enough for us,
 I had a Sanur delight :)

No photos please!!

 The same little kitten from last night he was in luck tonight 

This the sign out the front of the restaurant, no creme brulee but hey this looks exactly like a black bottom tart from Ubud so I was excited.
It's free with a particular dish but I could still order it.
I'll let you in on something I learnt, if your waitress is giggling when she brings over your dessert then she runs away ...you probably aren't going to get what you expected :)

 This is exactly what was put in front of me! Is it just me? I don't think it looks like the picture advertised does it?
Not only did I not get my creme brulee this trip but I had the ugliest dessert I've ever seen!

Mums was a little better but only just!
We laughed a lot so it was worth it and the way the waitress had run away laughing just made it funnier.

Now see why I don't drink.
 When you have sisters like mine.
I do not sleep with stuffed animals and had no idea they had put a fluffy cow in bed with me while I was fast asleep.
Not until I was sorting out the photos for this blog!

One more day.......

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