Ubud High « Bali 2020 ~ Bali & Indonesia in the Time of Covid-19
“Arguing with an anti-masker is like playing chess with a pigeon. They knock over the pieces, crap on the board and strut off like they've won.”
Blog posts from the disasterous year that was 2020.
Public poster outside Ubud Market shaming Western tourists and foreigners for not wearing face-masks and
disobeying Indonesia's Covid-19 health protocols. Masks have been mandated in Indonesia
since March 2020. Foreigners' adoption of masks is embarrassingly weak on the resort island.
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia on Feb 13, 2021.
Photograph by © 2021 Ubud High.
It became apparent by mid-August 2020 that I could not keep up with the high-speed news cycle generated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
At that point I began a Twitter account to compile links, news and comment to try to make sense of what I was seeing, and what I was up against in the future – dependent on whether I get one or not.
Current (2021) Twitter feed at @DurianLiftOff
Scroll for news, views, links and free-writing on the Bali scene at Twitter provided by @DurianLiftOff.Tweets by Durian LiftOff
Below are scraps and blog pieces from June 10, 2020 until I created my Twitter account at Durian LiftOff in August 2020.
Fragments from Bali, 2020
- Indonesia's 'New Normal' ~ First milestone of 1000 daily Coronavirus cases hit
- Indonesia records most Coronavirus cases and deaths in South-East Asia
- Play this near anyone not wearing a face-mask near you
- Breathwork, Ubud-style ~ Kill your neighbour, kill me
- Wissam Barakeh & 'The House of Om' on Bali ~ Going full-Covid in the name of heart-centred love and light [Updated 2021]
- Coronavirus / Covid-19 update for Bali, Indonesia ~ Cases and Deaths (July 4, 2020)
- Coronavirus / Covid-19 update for Indonesia ~ Cases and Deaths (July 10, 2020)
- Marked for Life ~ Anti-maskers, maskless foreigners and Covid-19 on Bali
- Thought for the Day ~ Coping
- Extreme courage
- Six specific symptom clusters for Covid-19
- Indonesia breaks record daily Covid-19 death-toll and surpasses China in cases
- Coronavirus / Covid-19 updates for Indonesia and Bali (July 23, 2020)
- Ayurvedic Tantric Sex & Yoga on Bali ~ Tantra Instructors, Teachers, Classes and Workshops in Ubud & Canggu
- Jerinx and maskless anti-rapid test & anti-swab test demonstrators protest in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia
- Yeah, bro, like... anyway ~ Maskless foreigners, face-masks and Covid-19 health protocols on Bali
Covid-19 Pandemic Street Art on Bali
Street art by the anonymous Balinese muralist 'Wild Drawing' (WD) on separation, budding long-distance relationships and the importance of communication during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Bali urban graffiti by © 2020 Wild Drawing.
Photograph by © 2020 Ubud High.
'Distant Hug' (November 2020).
Loneliness, distance, separation and a virtual hug during the disasterous and extreme Covid-19 pandemic.
Balinese street art by © 2020 Wild Drawing.
Photograph by © 2020 Ubud High.
© 2021 John Storey. All Rights Reserved.
The Last Pic
Portrait of the Day
Portraits from Bali by Ubud High
© 2021 John Storey. All rights reserved.
Search Ubud High
Popular search terms ~
ganesha bali / covid / scorpions / scooter rental / bali street art / graffiti / murals / volcano / earthquake / trance / hornets / arma art gallery ubud / nyepi / traditional balinese paintings / rainy season / snakes / 2022 bali spirit festival / dengue fever / ecstatic dance / indonesia
Street Art, Urban Murals & Creative Graffiti on Bali
Street art, graffiti and murals for the masses – the most public of Bali's urban art scene hidden in plain sight on the walls of Canggu, Ubud, Seminyak and Kuta.
THE UBUD HANDBOOK ~ Your free guide to living in Ubud and Bali in an online nutshell.
‘First stop on Shree Ganesha's round-Asia tour was a spell in Buddhist Tibet with its strong tantric leanings – a convenient spot to re-invent himself as Vinãyaka, and then as the dancing red Nritta Ganapati – before a full-blown alter-ego revamp as the scarlet, twelve-armed Maharakta Ganapati. Now, Maharakta Ganapati was unusually fond of skullcaps filled with human flesh and blood – and this we might charitably put down to a bad trip.
After all, what happens in Tibet stays in Tibet...’
‘To cut an all-night story short, the mask was donned by a dancer who fell into a deep trance. But instead of staying in the temple, he began to run. And run. He became violent and uncontrollable. He ran for four kilometers down the road – the crowd scrambled after him. He ended up in a cemetery just past my house, and in the dead of night began to do frenzied battle with unseen foes...’
∞ 'Nyepi' ~ Bali's Hindu New Year, and the Day of Silence ~ Melasti, Ngerupuk, Ogoh-Ogoh & Manis Nyepi
‘If previous New Years' Days have seen you waking up with a crippling hangover trying to remember what you did the night before, maybe it's time you headed to Bali in March. Nyepi – the Balinese Day of Silence, and the start of the Hindu Saka New Year – is a day, a night and a day you'll never forget....’
‘Kajeng Kliwon is the kind of day when anything that can happen will happen. It invariably does.
You have been seriously warned...’
“When I had my sixth and seventh babies at the hospital – my twin girls – the doctor ordered me to have a Caesarian. And without asking me, he tied my tubes off as well.
I think he thought I'd had enough babies...”
“On the third bite,” says one hater, “it was as though I'd just eaten a diseased, parasite-infested animal with a bad case of rabies. I prayed I wouldn't be sick because I really didn't want to taste it again on the way back up...”
‘Boobs and political censorship have never been far from the Silver Screen – in Indonesia, they're its bedrock. The silent flicks of Thirties' Bali sucked hungrily on the island's bare-breasted cabinet-postcard image that encouraged so many gilded tourists – and dodgy film-stars like Charlie Chaplin – to visit its sultry, forbidden shores...’
Getting Around ~ Bali 'Biking
“For me, some of the most dangerous people on the road are white people. I avoid them like the plague. You can tell the ones who are going to hurt others – the fixed grins, the hunched over the handle-bars, the wobbling around corners and shouts of indignation when they finally hit someone – because they have absolutely no idea how life and the road works around here...”
‘She tears into the traffic. She can't stop. She narrowly misses hitting a car head-on, swerves past a mum on a 'bike and slaloms across the road. Before she hits anyone – it's a miracle she doesn't – she falls in a bad-sounding heap of bent metal and smashing plastic. A group of Balinese rush to pick her up before the cops see her...’
‘She starts sweeping and I notice that she's limping. There's a spreading bruise and an angry graze running past her knee and down her calf. She wants to carry on cleaning – I sit her down and ask her what happened.
She's shy; I press...’
‘Rule number one on a monsoon day? Don't get wet.
You may not realise that getting caught in a cloudburst or shower on Bali – particularly if you're on a motorbike – is the tropical equivalent of walking naked outside during a Prague Winter after a lukewarm bath.
It'll really slow you down. The shivers, hot-and-cold flushes, a chesty cough, diarrhoea, sneezing, stomach pains, a belting headache and aching bones are all at the top of the list...’
‘Nowhere is free from the tax of life. We all have to pay for our slice of Bali paradise – and this often comes in the shape of our biting, stinging, crawling, flying insect-cousins.
It's the downside of environment-sharing...’
Holidays from the Jungle
‘Agricultural, and unpractised in the dark art of handling international tourists, the aristocratic farmer-people of Trunyan have acquired a damaging reputation for aggression. Their unique tourist draw – a jungle-cemetery where bodies are left in the open to disintegrate underneath a magical banyan tree – is regularly shunned by travellers on the time-sensitive tourist circuit...’
‘Ten meters away and the young man finally looks up – an inane, animal-like grin taped across his face as his girlfriend grips his porcelain butt and grimaces towards the empty blue sky. They disengage like street dogs, utter an invective in Russian, and stare...’
Tourism & Self-Enrichment
‘My concentration's shot to pieces. The spaghetti keeps falling off my fork. She's on her third large beer now. She starts to say 'facking' even more, and is speaking so loudly that people passing on the street have begun to look her way, and she's spitting bits of ciabatta bread and tomato and fish into her friend's dinner...’
‘I'm staying at a cute, family-run bed-and-breakfast – a homestay – on Ubud's trendy Jalan Goutama. A young member of the homestay's family tours her compound, blessing it with incense and rice and flower-petal offerings in little hand-made palm-leaf boxes.
All is well in Bali's spiritual capital...’
‘A Dutch boy in Holland goes to a gypsy fortune-teller who tells him that he is, in fact, Balinese. Afterwards, his uncle visits the Island of the Gods and brings him back a wooden carving of a bare-breasted lady.
Lucky for him it wasn't one of those funny-shaped wooden bottle-openers that looks like a cock...’
‘Shake out those Kundalini Awakenings with some HoopYogini™ and Bhakti Boogie® at the Yoga Barn. Celebrate The Divine Feminine with a splash of Shakti Dance. Puff up your lungs in a Sacred Breathwork Immersion Workshop®, insert a Jade Egg for luck at The Womb Temple™ and polish it off with some tantalising Manifesting And Abundance.
You know you're worth it...’
Search Ubud High
Popular search terms:
ganesha bali / covid / scorpions / scooter rental / street art / graffiti / mural / trance / volcano / earthquake / hornets / arma gallery / nyepi / traditional balinese paintings / rainy season / snakes / 2022 bali spirit festival / dengue fever / ecstatic dance / indonesia
Gunung Anak Krakatau – the infamous 'Child of Krakatoa' volcano – erupting in the Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra, Indonesia.