I went on my first real adventure today. I have been on mini adventures since I have been here, i.e. finding my way to the supermarket and then trying to figure out what laundry detergent looks like at the supermarket, but this was the first big adventure...
Let me just preface with, Mapquest does not exist in Bali and street names/signs are a rare sighting. I drove into a little town called Ubud today. What should have taken about 30 to 45 minutes only took me an hour and 45 minutes! I made it in record time. I used the few Indonesian words that I know and at every stop said to the motorist next to me "Permisi, Ubud?" and they would point in the direction I needed to go. I laughed to myself a few times about the whole situation and just thought, is this seriously how I'm finding my way? On my way back to Denpasar, where I am currently staying, I went down a street that was not looking promising. So, I asked a guy who was walking along the road "Permisi, Denpasar?" he smiled, pretended to kick a soccer ball and then motioned to go right. That meant, go past the soccer field, take a right and that will lead you to Denpasar. I gave him a thumbs up and a "terima kasih" and was on my way. That made making a wrong turn totally worth it and put a huge smile on face!
"Permisi" means "Excuse me" and "Terima kasih" means "Thank you". That is about the extent of my Indonesian!
Here is some of what I saw on my adventure today..