Posts from the ‘eBlog’ Category
I wrote about visiting Bali and what to see last year, but I didnt write anything about my visit to Bali itself last year. The truth is, when visiting a new exciting place with young kids under 3, it is better to enjoy the hotel facilities and have fun there. Yes, we can go out for lunch but not very often. Holiday style will not be very active, but its a good idea to stay in a place that offers plenty of activities for the kids.
We decided to stay in Cemagi Residence, an independent villa near the sea, but away from the razzmatazz of nightlife of Kuta or Seminyak (the in-place for party animal tourists)
Location of this place is around 45 minutes from Seminyak, or on a busy road, it could take 2 hours from the airport. A bit isolated and was difficult for us to get daily supplies; we needed a car to get all the provisions, however, as this was a proper villa to rent, the very nice staff offered us the facilities to buy our daily needs from the local shop every morning.
When we reached the place for the first time, we felt that it was very far and long way into the ‘interior’ of Bali, which in reality is not true. The problem was to go there was through a bit of rice field and a number of small villages.
The main entrance gate was small, just as wide as a car width, less than 2.4 meters, and after a longish drive in seemed even smaller, the front porch as well as the entrance to the house was not that impressive. I was a bit disappointed when I saw the entrance, what could it be once we are there, it might be an overpriced accommodation….
But once we were passed the foyer, straight away we looked at big garden, the swimming pool, the sunken sitting area and the view overlooking to the sea…. It really blew our minds, the place was simply amazing, brilliant. Just right for us to unwind for a week and we didn’t need the noisy Kuta or Seminyak to enjoy our stay in Bali.
Cemagi Residence consisted of 3 double bedrooms, a media room, swimming pool that one can swim laps as well as enjoy the infinity edge that reached out to the sea.
Dining room and a sunken relaxing area is also part of the facilities of the villa.
What I liked most was that it still had a good expanse of grass that we could play Frisbee or even mini football with our grand children.
In addition to that it had an extra gazebo at the end of the property that overlooked the Mengening beach, where we could sit all afternoon quietly waiting for the sunset to fall without having to go to any razzmatazz public beach like in Kuta or Seminyak or Ku-deta or other similar places.
For further information:
Jalan Pantai Mengening Cemagi,
Desa Cemagi -Mengwi-Canggu,
I got lost in a pretty English village, but when I tried to look for a signpost or anything that could help me find my way around. This is what I found:
What does it means, we are at “FOURWAYS” village or at a junction? I don’t think it answered my question which way should I take next.
But wait, there’s another sign says:
Where do you think I should go? I think I am still lost.
These English people are strange…………..
I knew the moment I decided to take this job, to move to the Middle East, the nature of my job would change forever. I used to worked in a nicely designed office, for an Architectural Company. Now, even though I still work as an architect, the position is irrelevant, I work in a PM/CM company where office locations move around according to where the project is, this is what people used to call a ‘site-office’, and instead of working from a proper office building, I end up working from a porta-cabin, and it’s been going on for more than 7 years now. Moving from one porta-cabin to another. From an acceptable structure to a shed as an office.
However, there are times that I question the decision I made almost 8 years ago:
- I left my network that I’ve built since I graduated.
- I left behind the job I loved not to mention high profile position.
- Even though I was single when I left the office, I still had my immediate family/relatives.
- I don’t like the nature of the job; changing project after project every 2 weeks to 3 months confused me and demoralized my spirit.
On the other hand, there are good things that I learned since taking this job:
- This job gives different exposure, and meeting different people and nationalities instead of working in Indonesia.
- Instead of working very hard almost 11 hrs a day, and lots of overtime, I work ‘only’ 8 hours a day, very routine with no unexpected overtime.
- I met my soul mate, and got married, instead of being a lonely spinster.
- I can help my family financially very easily, as well as together with my husband, we can easily save for retirement.
- As I caught the travel bug, this job also pays for my very nice holidays.
- The longer my husband and I stay with our jobs, the better lifestyle we can achieve once we both retire.
- While other people are losing their jobs due to the current recession, we are still fully employed and have a regular income; we should be great full with what we have.
I know that there are slightly more positives to this job than the negatives. I should be more realistic and persevere with this job regardless if I like it or not…. but what about my blogging hobby that requires full time work and attention? And how about my husband who’s already well into his retirement age, but still working full time?
Other things that cross my mind is my passion to travel that is put on hold till now. The plan was once we both retired / quit from a normal job then we are going to travel full time and off course carry on blogging about our travels. And I think we should start traveling now when physically my husband is still strong enough to endure the hot and humid temperature of South East Asia. The question now is when is the cut off time? Now? or the end of the year? or next year? or the year after that? One thing I know is that we are not getting any younger and we only live once….
I am always excited when we go to the UK for holiday. Yes, I have been there many times before and each time we go to different places and thus we experience something new each time. One of the things I always get excited about is finding accommodation. Elsewhere on our travels we normally stay in a hotel, either it’s cheap or a fancy five star hotel, but in the UK, there are so many options that let me be exposed to the daily life of the “ethnic English” – as my husband used to say when we are mingling with the “locals”. As we are in the UK, and I am the foreigner, I love to see how the “locals” go about their daily life. London gives me the metropolitan and busy look of UK, but the country is not about London; it’s about the other cities, the villages and the countryside.
Thanks to Booking dot com we found a great little Bed & Breakfast place near Shaftesbury – the small English town that I planned to photograph. I decided to stay in the B&B called The Old Forge, however, the picture shown in it’s website shows everything except the most important thing: the bedroom and the bathroom.
However, from Booking dot com, there are:
- No pictures of how the bed/bed rooms look like. In normal condition, I wouldn’t want to go to a place where I can’t see where I would sleep – I ignored this condition.
- No review from previous visitors about this place; as I think its important to know what people say about the place – I ignored this condition again. (this is a new place in Booking dot com, thus no body had written a review).
The reason I was so attracted to this place is because the outdoor images were so interesting; this is the country living that I could ever imagine. Fingers crossed that this place was the genuine article and good enough to stay overnight. We booked it for 3 nights, and if it was not good enough we could always run away to the next better place near by….
We arrived at The Old Forge very late that day, almost 10pm, and we failed the intelligennc test as we missed the location which was exactly by the main road. There was no sign from the street that this is It, and it was dark already. My husband then said: “I think this is it, it looks similar to the picture on the website….”
As soon as we knock on the small cottage house door we were greeted by Lucy and Tim, our hosts for the next few days. As it was very late already – at least according to our norms when we normally go to bed at 9.00 pm – they directly show us around, where breakfast was serve and our bedroom and bathroom. Somehow they understood that we were too tired to have a little chit-chat, so they let us go to our room after agreeing breakfast time.
To my surprise, the room was beautifully clean, and it had everything there as a 3+ star hotel would have, small telly with it’s widget, kettle to heat water in case we wanted to make our own coffee or tea. In the hallway, there’s a little fridge where Lucy put a pot of milk, for our tea with milk as some English people do. As it is an old cottage house, there is a wash basin inside our room. however, our bedroom has no en-suite bathroom but we have our dedicated private bathroom/toilet in the very next room.
The next morning, as agreed we came down to the breakfast room, the breakfast table was set nicely looking towards the window to a small garden and another cottage house they owned as an independent cottage.
If you look at the picture above, Lucy offered us four different menu options, where she baked the bread every morning and the eggs are from their free range chickens.
As we were the only guest that morning, Lucy and Tim show us around their interesting barn/cottage, where it turned out that they have several room to rent, as a matter of fact they have three types of accommodation:
- Conventional bed and breakfast the type we were staying.
- Self catering accommodation, with it’s own living room and kitchen, one located attached to the main cottage, and the other one is an annex to Tim’s garage.
- Last type of accommodation are what they call ‘Glamping’ – glamorous camping. Located on their grounds.
Added to the attraction of a unique facility of this B&B, they also has a bit of ground where they keep their animals such as a horse, a donkey called Scrumpy Jack who even has his own Facebook page
We stayed there for three nights and before we knew it, it was time for us to leave. Lucy and Tim had been perfect hosts and we enjoyed very much our stay with them, including their three generation dogs Willow, the black lab, Pudding and Pie, the labradoodle dogs, Scrumpy Jack, the chickens which we ate their eggs everyday and their horse. When we left, Lucy was waiting to give us her last wave from in front of their porch.
I have even more photographs of the Old Forge which I will upload on my gallery on the 1st June.
What I did not know was they are not new in the business, they have run this business for more than 20 years, even though they are new to the Booking dot com database. If circumstances enable us to visit them again, I definitely will do that, however if you are interested to visit Tim & Lucy Kerridge then contact:
Dorset SP7 0NQ
This is my first time to see The New Dubai and Burj Khalifa, and as we are meeting Keith’s daughter and her new baby the next day, I thought I’d better to get it off my chest to photograph Burj Khalifa and it’s singing fountain that only happens in the evening. I asked a shop keeper of a souvenir shop in Dubai Mall when will the Singing Fountain start and he said “It won’t start before 6.30 pm and it will only show every 30 minutes.
As a good photography enthusiast, I learned that:
- Do a reconnoiter how to get to the location of where I would shoot the picture later on and how to get there.
- A nicer picture should be taken during the magic hour, or around sunset; and sunset was supposed to be around 6.02 pm and twilight should be at 7.01 pm.
- Come early and prepare my photography gear for action.
Thus I decided to arrive between 5.30 to 6 o’clock, so that still plenty of time for me as well as I won’t keep my husband waiting too long… the thing that he has to put up with – waiting for me photographing nonsense. However, I did not expect is this:
There’s no way to find a space for me to set up my tripod and take pictures over those heads and arms with cameras. I wonder where are all these people are coming from? If they are residents, how often do they take pictures of this as the singing fountain happens everyday? If they are tourists like me, I salute Dubai for it’s ability to attract tourism so much.
Another hick-up I had was as I was using my new camera, which is a Nikon D600, a full frame camera but able to mount a DX lens. What I didn’t quite understand was how to look for the framed picture through the view finder, thus this is the result:
I realized then that the location I chose to take the picture was too close to the object and too low. I needed to be further away from the object like this:
What do you think???
I also uploaded some picture on Nin’s Lenscape - my photography blog