TIMOR-LESTE REPTILE & AMPHIBIAN SURVEY
DOWN TO THE ISLAND OF THE GODS
Today was primarily a travel day. We rose early and left Kuala Lumpur for Bali in Indonesia on a packed Malaysia Airlines flight. Bali is sometimes known as the "Island of the Gods" because being the centre of Indonesian Hinduism, there are numerous temples decorated with Hindu gods and demigods.
In Bali those of us who had visited before were pleasantly surprised to find ourselves in a much more modern, much more organised terminal. Gone were the touts who would offer to help you circumvent the visa queue for $20, but gone also to a greater or lesser degree were the queues for Immigration which were now much like those at any airport, and you did not require binoculars to see the front, as previously.
From the airport we traveled to the Best Western Kuta Resort, a hotel we have used on numerous occasions in the past. Hinrich and the rest of the team then left for a Balinese cookery class, something that he has arranged to great effect in the past. I stayed behind to sort camera and field gear as we have an important trip planned for the next day. I would probably have benefitted from the course though as despite guesting on several TV cookery shows I am no cook. I once told TV chef Ainsley Harriott that I "didn't believe in anything that took longer to prepare than it did to consume", to which his comment was "Hummph!"As a professional chef I don't think he approved of my thoughts on cooking.
Tomorrow we have another early start, to fly to Flores and make a side-trip to the Komodo Islands.
I dined alone, and probably not as well as my friends!
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