Keeping Sumbanese culture and open-heartedness in mind, we headed off to Bali for another stopover before flying to our other fieldwork location Belitung. It took us ages to decide for a restaurant where we wanted to have lunch, as we were overwhelmed with the many choices we had.
As we had one day off of our field project, my group started to spread out a little bit. We all had different wants and needs after our amazing time on the forgotten island. Nadine was managing her email and social life whereas Anna and Nikki managed their health – the both of them received a pretty amazing back massage leading them to once forget about carrying fully packed backpacks daily. As I was fed up with wearing long skirts only, I desperately hunted for wide and comfy pants – vainly. Having the Sumbanese friendliness but also hospitality in mind, the “touristy” culture of Bali hit me really hard. Locals were shouting and waving at me constantly. This time however, not to get the attention of a foreigner/ tourist they hardly ever see, but to sell their products. They were so obtrusive that I felt really uncomfortable and left without any pants.
In the evening we wanted to experience the vivid nightlife of Bali that we heard of so many times. After long hesitation, primarily because of interesting but disturbing stories of our drivers on Sumba, we finally dared to go into the busy and scary nightlife of Kuta. “Sky Garden Bali” was the name of the fancy night club we went in to for literally the whole night. The atmosphere was amazing and the beat bouncing beneath our feet. We made contact with the DJ who even turned out to be Dutch. He was not only handing us free beer but also giving Nikki the opportunity to face time with one of her favourite soccer players of PSV Eindhoven. At the end of the night, it was already past 5am, the DJ organised scooter drivers that brought us to our hotel.
We had a great and adventurous night on Bali. As we however needed to be ready for take-off again at 9:30, I wished I had a little bit more of sleep and water during the night.
Written by: Chiara