Christmas in Bali

Strange, strange day. The kampung is completely quiet. No sounds anywhere other than the occasional child’s yell. The kampung seems completely deserted. Even our house which is usually filled with the sounds of children playing, fighting, blasting teenage music through their computer sound systems, and calling for their mother is quiet.

I was online earlier this morning chatting with a former student who lives in Denver now, as well as looking for my nieces who I thought may have been traveling to Chicago for Christmas.

It’s an amazingly bright day, some clouds on the horizon, but otherwise a beautiful azure sky. There’s a strong breeze today, not quite a wind, and the sea is alive with ripples and shifting shades of blue.

This is my 19th Christmas in Bali (with the exception of one year when I was traveling back to here from the States and was somewhere near Taiwan when Christmas came). I never quite gotten used to Christmas in the tropics. When I lived in Papua, we would have a Christmas program at the school so there was some sense of Christmas coming, and during the five years that I was in Sumbawa, we also had some Christmas activities –caroling, putting up a tree, and similar things. This year when I returned to Sumbawa, it turned out that there were no Christmas activities planned – I’m not sure why, no one even mentioned it except for my friend – which I found somewhat disconcerting even though I don’t actually celebrate Christmas anymore. So much for multiculturalism.

Sitting here on the balcony, I can see the jetstream of a plane in the Western sky heading off to Singapore, or KL or Bangkok most likely. When I see planes off in the distance, I get that old traveling urge, but it’s mostly a remnant of younger days; the last few trips that I’ve made out of the country, I’ve spent almost as much time in my room watching the news as I have wandering around whatever city I’m in. The truth is that I’ve gotten tired of traveling alone. I’m don’t have that edginess that I had a few years ago that led me out into unknown cities to explore. It could be that I’m more comfortable in my own skin these days.

Have a wonderful holiday season.


~ by drbrucepk on December 26, 2008.

One Response to “Christmas in Bali”

  1. I have never been to Bali but I would love to visit there.

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