We lounged at the villa all day yesterday and then walked down the street (by “street” I mean the main highway through Bali) in Sayan, before stopping at a restaurant for dinner. During dinner it rained really hard, and not a Seattle-style rain, but an east coast rain. Came home, went to bed and was woken up by another hard rain.

Today, we’re planning to go to Denpasar to see “the big city” and then drive through Nusa Dua.

For the last couple days, we’ve listened to chainsaws and falling trees. They’re cutting down seemingly-healthy coconut trees in the river gorge below the villa. Indonesia has the second largest rain forest in the world, but over the last couple decades, it’s been shrinking faster than even Brazil’s. I guess they need to make furniture and wood carvings (naked women sometimes in lesbian embraces, penis bottle openers, etc.) more than they need forests.

One thing you can’t help but notice in Bali is these little palm leaf boxes filled with food, flowers, leaves that are placed everywhere, though mostly in doorways. They also burn a stick of incense by them. Every single day, people put these out as an offering to the demons (both good and bad demons). The offerings to the good demons are placed in decorative boxes positioned in prominent places.

The offerings to the bad demons are on the ground, in less prominent locations.

From reading the travel books, they do this to show respect to the good demons but place the offerings to the bad demons in “non-chalant” ways to appease them, but to act as if they were mistakes, I assume so as not to anger the good demons.

The result is that you see birds and dogs eating the food in them and they’re just strewn around the streets since they’re never picked up. What I wonder about is not the incredible loss of productivity in Bali from everyone doing this once or twice a day, but who makes all these little palm leaf boxes? That’s the business to be in! 🙂

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