nov 17

Pengunjung dan Gunung Rinjani

So lately I’ve been trying to talk more and more Bahasa Indonesia, and surprisingly, it goes better than expected. I’m far far away from being fluent. But sometimes I can understand what people are talking about or answer simple questions in Indonesian.

*Fun fact Bahasa Indonesia = Indonesian = literally language Indonesia.  So Dutch would be Bahasa Belanda = language Netherlands. There is actually a logic behind the language. I just have to find it.

So what does the title: ‘Pengunjung dan Gunung Rinjani’ mean?
Pengunjung = visitors (YES! I had visitors here on Bali!)
dan = and
Gunung Rinjani = mountain Rinjani (or Vulcano)

So this blog is about my visitors and climbing the Rinjani Vulcano! Welcome to my new blog!

Let’s start with my visitors: MY PARENTS. My parents went to Bali for 12 days. They arrived October 23th on this beautiful island. I just had to go to school and to my project, so I couldn’t meet with them right away. Instead they had their own driver Ngurah who showed them around. Before I saw my parents they already saw and heard a lot about Bali and they loved it. They went to Ubud, Tanah lot, ricefields, tried Luwak coffee and they saw some more temples / places.

Bali 2017

Thursday was the day I would see them again. It was kinda weird. I’d been living on Bali for only a month and they would already visit me. A month goes by really fast, so it didn’t feel like I hadn’t seen them in a long time. It was just a couple of weeks. So after going to my project in the morning I went to Lovina later that day with Sanne to welcome my parents. I booked a hotel for them 2 weeks prior to their arrival while I was sitting at the pool of the hotel and video calling with my parents.

Bali 2017 cellphone picture

In the noon my parents, Sanne and I walked to Lovina beach which was very close to the hotel of my parents. Sanne just relaxed at the beach while my parents and I went snorkeling in the sea. First we did not have the best places to go snorkeling (only sand), but a little later we found a spot with some coral and pretty fishes. My parents really loved it! (Orangtua saya suka snorkeling in Indonesian). After we went snorkeling I took the time to enjoy the warm shower in my parents’ hotelroom. The first month I stayed here we did not have warm water in the shower at home because something was going on with the boiler and they didn’t bring the boiler back yet. By now they luckily brought it back after having to shower cold for 4 weeks. So we can finally take warm showers at home again.  At night I showed my parents how ‘cheap’ food could be here, we ate at apple where you can buy a good meal for €2 or cheaper. Way different than the Netherlands where you easily pay €15 for a meal. Here I usually go out to eat because prices are not that high. In the 1,5 months I’ve been here I never cooked at home. I only made some eggs and French toasts.

On Friday I decided to join my parents. I woke up at 4.45am to watch the dolphins at Lovina, on the way back from watching the dolphins we stopped at the snorkeling point and went snorkeling for about an hour. Then it was time for (second) breakfast at the hotel of my parents. While we ate breakfast Mylène also came. Her project was not working out well and she couldn’t do anything that day.

We decided to go to the Buddist temple which is not that far from Lovina. Walking around in Lovina we found a taxi driver who could bring us there and afterwards to Singaraja where I showed my parents where I live during these months. We also ate lunch at the harbor of Singaraja and I brought my parents to the traditional market which is on walking distance from my house. Here my parents bought bananas to give to the monkeys on the way next to the road to the South. Later that day we wanted to go to the waterfall, but this was further to drive and our taxi driver asked more money for that. We decided just to go back to Lovina and go snorkeling (again) at Spice Beachclub, the place I have my diving classes at. From my parents’ hotel we had to drive here with the scooter.


Sanne, Mylène and I would join my parents for the weekend in the South of Bali. On Saturday morning 10am we got picked up by my parents and their driver Ngurah. On Saturday it was just a lot of traveling with stops on the way. The first stop was at a restaurant with a view on mount and lake Batur. Here we ate a little before we would go further. On the way Ngurah tested our Indonesian skills. Here we told some of the stuff of which we had learned. One of those words is Hati-hati which means: be careful. But our teacher also told us it could mean have fun. Well the moment we told that to Ngurah he started laughing, because that meaning of the word is definitely not possible. He made fun of us the rest of the weekend…

At the start of our road trip this weekend 👌 We've seen many things and it was a lot of fun!

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

The second stop on the way was at the temple Tirta Empul. Here we were able to ‘clean’ ourselves in the holy water. For this we had to rent a special sarong, because you are not allowed to walk around in a temple with a wet sarong. It was a very pretty temple and you could already see some of the preparations of Galungan, the holiday that was coming up.


The third and last stop before we went to the hotel was Best to Buddha. At this place they make the Buddha to Buddha jewelry. Here we stayed for quite a long time and everyone bought something (except my dad).

Then it was time to go to our hotel. It was very busy on the road and some road were closed. So it took some time until we reached our hotel. In the evening we went to eat at Hard Rock Café. Unfortunately way more expensive than all the other food that I usually eat here, happy I still had a coupon. With this we could get one of the meals for free. After eating and buying my souvenir shirt we walked around in Kuta and visited some stores.


We did not buy anything that night, but Sanne did see swimwear that she really liked. So the next morning Sanne and I went back into Kuta looking for the one store with the swimwear. We also had to hurry, so not being able to find the store at first did not really help us. We had to be back by a certain time because Ngurah would pick us up again for the next day. After a nice walk on the beach, and walking around all the stores we finally found the store we were looking for. Here Sanne tried on and bought a bikini and a swimsuit in less than 10 minutes. After that we had to be fast going back to the hotel. We were already looking around us, because our driver would have to go over the same street but we did not see him. After finding out we were really late we took the first cab we saw to go back to the hotel. Driving in the taxi to our hotel we saw that the car in front of us Ngurah was. So if we waited 10 seconds longer we could drive with back with him to the hotel. Now we just drove the last 100 meter on the driveway of the hotel with him.

That day we went to Pedang-pedang beach and to Uluwatu. At the beach we had some time to relax, enjoy the views and to swim. It was very pretty here. Then at Uluwatu we were warned that there were monkeys who would get anything from you that is shiny. So we left all our stuff in the car including our sunglasses. That was the worst decision ever. I am that person who cannot see when it is bright outside. So I was sitting with my eyes squeezed all the time and I got a little headache. I really missed my sunglasses during the time we were there.





Then it was time to go back to the hotel already. Sanne, Mylène and I got our bags at the hotel, bought some snacks at the store and got into our next taxi which was from family from Ngurah. We still had to go to the university the next day. On the way back we gave the bananas my dad bought in Singaraja to the monkeys. They didn’t really feel like taking a lot. So I just put all the bananas that were left on the side of the road where the monkeys usually are. My parents would stay for a couple more days in Bali before going back to The Netherlands. They also wrote a blog about their trip to Bali, feel free to read it at !



And here a picture with me, my parents and icecream. My dad is like obsessed with the Creme brulee magnum over here haha


In the night I had to do my laundry very fast and pack for my next trip to the Gunung Rinjani. Monday morning I still had to go to school, but Tuesday we would be off because of Galungan. Galungan is a holiday on Bali where they celebrate that the spirits of the people who had died come back to Earth. During Galungan there are a lot of ceremonies at the family temples. We heard that there are not really parades or something, so we decided to go to Lombok to climb the mount Rinjani during our holiday. There are people who went there by motorbike, but I decided to join the group who went with the bus. We left Monday after school. I just had a little time to buy some extra groceries for on the way and to finish packing.

It was a long trip to Lombok. After a 3 hour dive we had to get on the boat, which took us 4 hours to get to Lombok. This was during the night. But we could not be that comfortable to get in sleep well. Towards the end of the boattrip I got so tired that I fell asleep easily. Then at Lombok the next taxi was already waiting for us with some students of the University at Lombok. These students would also be our guides the next days. The first night we stayed at a homestay somewhere towards the East in Lombok. We arrived late at night, so the first goal was to go to sleep. I shared the room with Sanne. At this homestay many things were open which I didn’t like. I know the malaria mosquito is active on Lombok so I did not like that our ‘window’ in the bathroom was just a hole in the wall. So we tried to keep all doors in between closed. Also from our bed we could just see the roof tiles through the hole in our ceiling. There were also huge spiders at the homestay which I didn’t see until the next day. They were as big as your hand and some might even have been bigger. We stayed during the day at the homestay and at a shop nearby where some students bought some more stuff for during the hike, we would hike up the Rinjani with a total of 12 students. After lunch we left with a bus to the next homestay from where we would leave Wednesday morning to do the three day hike. On the way we stopped at a place where we could enjoy the view of the Gunung Rinjani before we continued. Arrived at the next homestay we got our bags ready for the hike, ate, got some information for the next days and we went to sleep.




On Wednesday we had to leave early for our first day hiking. After breakfast we left Sanne and Lieke behind who did not join us hiking but did other fun stuff instead. We had to sit with 12 students in the back of a truck and drive for like an hour. It was a fun experience. But just before we arrived at registration I lost my cap. So the car had to stop so I could get my cap back. The rest of the ride I just held the cap in my hands. Then it was time. We were really gonna start our hike. No turning back anymore. The first part was still a little flat, but we were walking full in the sun. So we had to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. At the 2nd pos we had lunch: noodles with veggies, a boiled egg and fruit.





After the lunch we had to climb further. I just walked easy because I knew I still had to save my legs for the next two days. After a few hours, and a small nap of our guide, we arrived at the crater rim where we would spend our first night in tents. We arrived just in time to see part of the sunset, but after that we still had to find the rest of our group. After finding the group Mylène and I went to our tent. After dinner we went to sleep because it would be a short night.




At 1.30am we woke up again. We were going to climb up to the top and see the sunrise from there. It was a very hard climb up to the top. There were parts that looked like dunes. So just a lot of sand that we had to climb up to, and it was pretty steep too. I also noticed that my body was not entirely awake yet because I had the feeling I could fall asleep while walking. It was also very cold and windy. So 200 meter before we reached the top Valerie, Merel and I decided not to go further and we made some great pictures at that point. Later Mylène and Puck came to the same spot. Mylène went down with me and Puck would try to go a little further up the mountain. No one of our group reached the top. It would not be save there. I also heard someone saying that this climb at that day would be as hard as climbing the mount Everest. So I think I can be very proud of myself of coming that far.






When we got back at the tents we ate our second breakfast before we would continue for the day. This day was going down to the lake and going up to the crater rim on the other side. I like going down a lot more than going up to be honest. Our descent took a little longer than expected. At the bottom of the crater we went to the hot water spring which is warmed up by the volcano. For me it was too hot to ‘bath’ in, so after walking further and further away I found a spot that I could handle to sit in. Only, the water was not that clean. So after smelling because we could not shower these days, we smelled even more because of the hot water spring. After the hot water spring we still had to walk up for a while. During our walk up it started to rain. So we had to get our ponchos out. After walking further for a while it started to get dark. So at the end we had to walk up a scary path where we had to climb straight up with a ravine next to us in the dark. When we got up we were at the place our next camp was at. Back in the tent and after a game of UNO with some of the other students we got our dinner. The tent of Mylène and me had a problem. The zipper was broken and it could not close. Our sweet guides helped us and fixed the zipper of the tent. So after that we could go to sleep.

Where we slept the first night:




Do you see the rainbow?

The next morning we had an amazing view from our tent. We got ready for the next hike and made a group picture. We had to wait a little before we left, because one of our group lost her phone. Unfortunately we did not find her phone. With a little delay we started the hike of our 3rd day, the descent back to the living world. On the way down we went through a jungle. Here the monkeys were almost walking down with us. We also had rain on the way down, it looked like a rainforest. Later it didn’t rain anymore. But it still felt like rain, because water stayed dripping down the trees.









After many hours we arrived down where we got picked up by a bus. This hike was so amazing! I want to thank our guides / friends for the great time I had. And I also want to say I have a lot of respect for the people carrying lots of stuff for us and preparing food. They were just walking on flipflops or bare feet up and down the mountain.



After a great week of hiking the group met up with Sanne en Lieke again. From there we went with the bus to the first homestay we stayed at in Lombok, here we got some dinner and picked up some stuff that was left there. Then from there we had to drive a couple more hours to the hotel we booked. The drive was long, but I think our driver might not have understood that we weren’t going to the harbor. He missed exits and because of that it was very late when we finally arrived at the hotel. First we were afraid all gates were closed. But after yelling for a while and trying to open the gates someone came, let us and brought us to our rooms. All of this was around 1.30am. So it was a very long day again. We just slept in the next day. Our breakfast at the hotel was very good and we just relaxed at the beach and pool. Around 11am we left to the boat to go back to Bali. On the boat it was storming! There was water everywhere. At the time I could not stay dry anymore sitting outside I went inside where it was very crowded. A couple of hours later when we were back on Bali our taxi driver was already waiting. He drove us back to Singaraja with a break to eat dinner on the way.





So it was a busy week with 2 trips. On Sunday I just rested and Monday school started again with our cooking class. But I think this blog is long enough for now, so more about that the next time! I hope I get time to write soon about that soon, because I’ve done a lot more after that already.

Sampai jumpa!

okt 25

Already one month?!

Wait.. Someone. Please tell me where the time went.. According to my agenda I have been on Bali for one month tomorrow. I really can’t believe that… Time went by way to fast.

So I’ve been here for a month now and I’ve seen so much! I try to add as many pictures as possible to show everything. But my micro SD card broke so I lost many pictures.. But hopefully I’ll be able to fix that card to get my pictures back. Where to start about everything I’ve done these past weeks?!

Visiting projects
In my previous blog you could already read that we visited all projects. One day we had to wake up early to get to the next projects which are east of Singaraja. Some of the group went there by bus because they were injured, there was still some place left in the bus. So I joined them because I was still very tired. First we went to a very pretty place where we had our breakfast, or for me who doesn’t leave the house without breakfast, my second breakfast.

Goodmorning 🌞 #balilife #morning #selamatpagi #sea #Icanlivewiththis

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

Mornings be like 🌞 #balilife #selamatpagi #views

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

From there we went to a town named Bengkale. In this town there are many deaf people and two students of our group work on a project at the school in Bengkale where they look at how the communication between the hearing and the deaf people/children at that schoool is. In Bengkale we could also visit the temple which was pretty cool to see. I’m also doing my project in Bengkale, but more about that later.


After we’ve been at the deafschool we went to Bali Mandara. This is a boarding school. Everyone had a buddy who showed them around at the campus. My buddy was Dina. She spoke good English! And making the big world small. She applied for the YES exchange program once, this is the scholarship AFS works with in the USA. Unfortunately there were many people who applied and she didn’t make it.



After visiting Bali Mandara we went to Air Sanih, this is a cold water spring. We stayed there for a couple of hours to ‘rest’. So all we did there was swimming and relaxing.



In the evening we went back to Bengkale. Here we watched the ‘deaf dance’. This means that the deaf people of the town were dancing. It was interesting to see. But also pretty short. We had to go over a pretty scary road to go to the place where the deaf people danced. Afterwards we had to go down that road before it got dark. Because of this we couldn’t go to the disabled people in the village who would give us a workshop of making traditional inke baskets.


When I got home at night I went together with Sanne to the hospital. She got sick that day and we wanted to make sure it wasn’t a scary infection. Luckily it wasn’t too bad. So after she got lots of unnecessary medications we went back home.

The next day we went to the local hospitals. People here loved to show to show you around. So they were very proud to show me the mortuary. The man also opened one of the ‘fridges’ where the bodies were in. I’m happy that person was covered in a blanket. The interesting part about the hospital is to see many people waiting outside rooms. This is family of the patients. The reason they are there is to care for their family. The hospital provides the healthcare / medicines that is needed. But does not bring food of drinks. So the family has to make sure the patient gets food and other stuff that’s needed.


After visiting the hospital I left the group for a small moment to check on Sanne who stayed home that day. I just had to make sure her fever wasn’t too high and that she was not feeling too bad. After that I joined the group again at the orphanage where some of us do a project.

Then there was a day more projects were visited. But I didn’t join the group that day because Sanne felt really bad that night. I stayed home with her because it was not good to leave her at home while the group was 1 hour away. We just slept in (which was very good for my tiredness) and did easy all day. Also we worked on our papers and started preparing for our ‘presentation’ the next day, Friday October 6th. The evening of the 6th of October we came together with almost everyone from all projects.
This evening we could meet some other students and talk to everyone. There wasn’t really time for all our presentations about stuff in The Netherlands. So we ended up doing some karaoke and the ‘kabouter plop dans’. I also called my American AFS sister who is staying with my parents that night. It was her birthday that day! Her Dutch is getting very good now, and I’m really proud of her!


Calling Sophia for her birthday! Connection wasnt that good unfortunately.. We’ll try again later 😊

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

My project
Figuring out what my project would be was kinda hard. I stopped by a foundation, Stepping Stones, who helps children with clubfeet. They are mainly helping the kids to recover from this. My education is more about how to live with something by using technology / special devices. So it was hard to get a good project from here. And also, they already had two Dutch students working there. At Stepping Stones they told me about another foundation in Lovina, that foundation works a lot with wheelchairs and maybe they had a very interesting project for me. But unfortunately this didn’t work out. At the other foundation they’re not used to work with students and they had stuff going on. So I couldn’t go there.. So now I ended up in Bengkale. This is a small village east of Singaraja. At this village it is my task to get in touch with the disabled people and see what their needs are. Maybe I can adapt to that and help them to get special devices so they could live easier.
I’ve been at my project a couple of times now, but unfortunately I couldn’t get in touch with the disabled people yet. First I’ll have to learn how to make a inke basket myself according to the person who is showing me around. So up until now I’m making baskets during my project. Hopefully I’ll be able to get in touch with the people soon so I could really start my project. I do see stuff now, but not the stuff I need to see. I’ve already been to a ‘deaf’ meeting and today to another meeting about tourism in Bengkale. It surprised me I could understand what the meeting was about. But I really hope I will be able to get in touch with the physically disabled people soon.

University Undiskha
So as you guys know. I’m here for school. This also means I have to go to the local university. I go here two days a week, on Monday and on Tuesday. During the classes at Undiskha we learn about the language, Bahasa Indonesia, and about the culture.
The days at school aren’t that long. We start at 9.30am. Then around 11am we have a 30 minute break and we are done around 1pm. Up until now I’ve had 4 days at school where we learned some of the basics of the language. Also, there is a holiday next week. So yesterday they taught us about that holiday, Galungan, and we made some typical Balinese decorations.



Fun stuff
Some people are asking me if I’m really here for school or if I’m only doing fun stuff. So I decided to write the more serious stuff first. But of course I can’t forget to write about all the fun stuff I did in my free hours!
In weekends we usually try to do stuff here. There was one long weekend we had, the weekend after our ‘presentations’. Almost our whole group left that weekend to Kuta. But because Sanne was sick earlier that week and I was really tired, we stayed in Singaraja where we’ve still seen a lot. On Saturday we woke up very early to see the dolphins with Nicole and Inske. They are two other students who are for their study on Bali. They work at the foundation of Stepping Stones where I was earlier that week to see if there were any options to do my project there. Watching the dolphins was so pretty!! There were many many dolphins! You can see shots of it in my vlog that I made earlier this month.

Waking up early to see the dolphins, totally worth it!!! 😍🦈 #balilife #dolphin #lovina #indonesia #6am

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

On Sunday Sanne and I decided to see if there were any nice pools around. But at many hotels they ask an entrance fee. We ended up at one of the most beautiful pools ever where we only had to buy a drink. Later we found out that there was a miscommunication. So next time we will also have to pay an entrance fee here..

Relaxing at a pool with my watermelon tube 🍉 #balilife #nofilterneeded #lovina #pool #swimming #watermelon

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

On Monday we were also off. That day we decided to go snorkeling at Menjangan Island. This is the island all the way in the north-west of Bali. I got a pretty bad sunburn, but it didn’t make my experience any less amazing. The snorkeling there made me decide to start diving lessons, I just wanted to go deeper all the time. But this is not possible with only snorkeling stuff.

Snorkeling ✔ Next up diving? #balilife #snorkeling #pulaumenjangan #menjangan #bali #underwater #hdsj4000

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

Snorkeling with the blue starfish 🤗 #balilife #snorkeling #starfish #bluestarfish #menjangan #pulaumenjangan #sunburn

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

So… Diving classes. Yeah that’s what you read. I started diving classes. The packet I got is for open water diving. In total for this I’ll have 3 days of lessons. I already finished the first two. I’m doing the diving lessons together with 3 other students of our group: Sanne, Maud and Puck. We started off in a very small pool where we had some basic exercises that we had to do. We did our second diving day on Monday after school. Then we went into the sea by Lovina. We did two dives here. I really like the feeling of almost no gravity and seeing the fish swimming around you. We went down to 12 meters deep this day.

First diving class ✔ #balilife #lovina #divinginapool #diving

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op



Diving at Lovina. One more day of the course till I get my PADI certificate 😊

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op

Last weekend we decided to go to climb the Mount Batur. This is one of volcanoes on Bali. On Friday I left together with Sanne, Mylène, Lieke and Puck to a hotel close to the volcano. The view from our hotel was amazing. On the one side we had mount batur and on the other side lake batur and another mountain.




We stayed at the hotel so we didn’t have to wake up too early the next morning. It was still very early tho.. Because we had to be ready to leave for our hike at 3.30am. In the morning other students of our group joined us to go hiking up the mountain. They stayed in the weekend in Ubud and left from there. Around 4am everyone was ready to leave to hike up the Mount Batur. It was still dark outside, so everyone had a flashlight.


We walked quite fast up the volcano, we had to be on top before the sun rises. The views were very beautiful from the top. Up in the mountains it is a lot colder, so I was happy I brought my hoodie with me. There were also some places where steam came out of the volcano, so there I could also warm up.





On the way down we took another route. On this route we also passed wild monkeys. They kinda wanted to have everything you had. So one first sat down on my lap and then he went for my phone. He started chewing on it. Because of that I have 2 wonderful holes in my screen protector as souvenir.. Another monkey just sat down on my shoulder. I already made sure someone else held my stuff so they couldn’t steal anything.


With my new 🐵🐵🐵 friends. #mountbatur #monkey #wildlife #hiking #selfie

Een bericht gedeeld door Anke Prinsen (@ankeprinsen) op


When we came back from our hike around 9.30am we found a mini scorpion in our room. We first thought it was dead. But when we found out it was alive we asked the people of the hotel to get rid of it. After that we got our breakfast and we just chilled at the pool of the hotel which was really nice and warm.



On our way back to Singaraja we decided to stop by the temple on the way. They say this is the 2nd biggest and / or most important temple of Bali. I’m not entirely sure which one it was. At the temple there was also a group of people who made a group picture. They saw us and they insisted on making the group picture with us. This happens quite often here on Bali, that people want to take pictures with you.




On Sunday we had a surprise party for Sjoerd, one of my roommates. It was his birthday and he wasn’t home all day. We decided to surprise him with the whole group. The surprise worked! He didn’t see it coming! So everything was perfect!

I guess that was about everything. I’m so sorry that my blog is that long again. I have no idea how people could write short blogs. The coming weeks I’m already fully planned, so I keep busy. Right at this moment my parents are on Bali too. So I’ll meet with them tomorrow and then Sanne, Mylène and I will join them in the weekend in the South of Bali. Then next week it is Galungan here, which means there won’t be school on Tuesday and no project the rest of the week. So I’ll be going to the Rinjani volcano on Lombok for a 3 day hike. I’m very excited to do that! I’ll try to keep you up to date!
Sampai jumpaa!!

okt 11

My first Bali vlog!

Hey everyone, here my first vlog in Bali! I hope you enjoy it! Many people asked me if I was here for school or holiday. The answer is for school, but these first weeks we’ve seen a lot. I also didn’t put shots at the projects in my video now. Also due to privacy reasons. And of course not everything here is fun to see. I see lots of poor people, stray dogs and garbage around. Maybe I can show you this somewhere in the future. But for now I just put shots in there which show how beautiful Bali is.

okt 02

My first week in Bali!

Selamat pagi/siang/sore/malam everyone! (depends on time zone which one to use)

I can’t believe I’m already (almost) one week in Bali, Indonesia. 😮 I’VE DONE SO MUCH IN THIS WEEK!! I’m sorry if my blog is long, I just have too much to say!

So last Sunday was my last day at home. That day some family and friends came over to say goodbye. I also had to finish packing. I did that in the evening. It took a little longer than expected, but after packing and unpacking my bags for like 3 times I finally finished.

Monday morning my dad woke me up when he had to leave to work. So I already had to say goodbye to him then. Later when I just came downstairs I had to say goodbye to Sophia who had to go to school.. (my parents wouldn’t get her out of school… 🙁 ). Around 9.30 am (NL time) I left with my mom to the station in Meppel where we would leave with the train to the airport. Parking is really expensive there and because I travelled for free and my mom had a good deal we decided to take the train. Yerke, our puppy, didn’t come with. So I had to say goodbye to him (and to my goldfish, Dip) just before we left to the train.


Arrived at the airport I had to stop my student OV (train deal). Jannie, the teacher from Windesheim and our ‘coach’, was also with the train and we found her pretty quickly at the airport. From there we walked to departures to wait for the other students. When everyone was there we checked in our bags and after that we had some time to say goodbye again before we left to the gates around 13.30.



After security we went to the gate where our plane was waiting for us. Around 15.20 we left with our first flight to Dubai. We landed around midnight (Dubai time). At Dubai we had a 1,5 hour layover. We had to go to a different part of the airport. This took a while, so when we got to the next gate we could start boarding right away.






When we arrived in Bali, 18 hours after departure, we had to go through customs. This went pretty smooth. We still had to wait a while until all the luggage of our group was there. When we went out of the secured zone of the airport there were many people waiting. Most of them were taxi drivers, during the time we walked out I got asked like 20 times if I needed a taxi. It was already a long trip but we had to wait for a couple more hours at the airport because 2 students were on other flights. While we waited we sat at the Burger King, we ate something, we got some cash from the ATM and we got many water bottles. When the last two students arrived we just had to wait for a little longer till the busses from the university in Singaraja came to pick us up.




On the way to Singaraja we stopped at a small store. Here we also got our first culture shock. The toilets here aren’t like the toilets in Europe or America. It is more like a toilet that is almost like a hole in the ground. And they don’t have toilet paper. So the first thing we did was buying toilet paper at the store. After a short stop with some small groceries shopping we continued to Singaraja. First we dropped off some other students at their house. From there we left to our house, the green house. Our home is pretty big! We have 2 balconies, 3 bathrooms, a big kitchen and a bedroom for everyone. I live here with 4 other students: Sanne, Mylène, Sjoerd en Joost. Dividing the rooms went pretty easy, I didn’t really mind which room I would get so everybody chose and I took the room that was left. It is upstairs on the right side (in picture windows upstairs left). I was planning on going to sleep quickly and put my mosquito net up the next day. But the moment I wanted to go to sleep I saw a dead mosquito in my bed. So that’s when I got up, got my mosquito net from the bottom of my suitcase and put it up in my room with some rope that I found in the house. After that I went to sleep.




Woah, this blog is getting so long already. And I’ve only talked about the trip there and our house…… But let’s continue with all stuff I did this first week.

The first night on Bali I slept really bad. In our house you hear everything, and we live on a pretty busy road. We knew that before. But I didn’t expect trucks to be driving there at 2 and 3 am… Then at 4.45 I woke up because of the mosque. I can enjoy the very lovely sound of the mosque every morning, and during the day (if we’re at home), and in the evening. But I might hopefully get used to it in the coming 4 months. I already slept through it a couple of times in the morning. 🙂
When I got out of bed I started unpacking my stuff and got some breakfast. Later I walked around in the neighborhood with my house mates. We also did some shopping by then. First we got a phone number, so we have internet here. Then we also got a blender (for smoothies), another fan for the kitchen and some other stuff we still wanted. We also went to the harbor of Singaraja and got some lunch there. I thought I ordered white fish, but it ended up being a squid. Whoops, next time I’ll pay a little more attention.




When we came back home we got picked up by a super cute truck. We drove to Lovina. Here we picked up our scooters. I am getting pretty good driving this one. After picking up the scooters I went with my roommates to Lovina Beach. It is really pretty here, but they see that you’re not from there and will ask you every time to buy stuff. In the evening we went out to eat with everyone (21 students, Jannie, Enik and Sari). This was at a place where we sat down on the floor to eat. There was a lot of different food that we could try.



Thursday morning I found out we didn’t have that much food anymore. So I went with Sjoerd and Mylène to the supermarket here to get some more food. After that we went again to Lovina Beach. Here I bought a Sarong at Enik and Sari’s store. Enik and Sari are our buddies here. If there is something going on we can always call them and they will stop by the house so now and then to check if everything is still alright. After choosing a sarong I wanted to try the whole Indonesian / Balinese look. So then I asked and Enik gave me this shirt to try on. It was pretty hot. But I could take pictures on the beach with it, it was really pretty. So I was happy. 🙂



After Sanne, Mylène and I bought the sarong we went back to the group who just got ready to get some lunch. One of them stepped in a sea urchin, so first we checked with the locals what to do. One of them (family of Enik and Sari), helped us and dispoissoned the sea urchin thingies which were still in the foot. After that we went to a really nice place for lunch. They had live music there, lots of Ed Sheeran songs and the musicians even tried a Dutch song. But they didn’t know the lyrics and stopped pretty quickly with that. When we finished lunch we went to swim at a hotel for a while. Then we wanted to check the sunset which was disappointing because it was cloudy. It was still very pretty though. At the sunset place there was also a local who wanted to take a selfie with me. It was very funny. It already happened more often that people want to take pictures with us and we already made it to some Instagram stories. At night we went out to eat again with a whole group. Here it takes a long time till you get your food. But it is very good. And everywhere in Indonesia (at Bali?) we’ll need patience, so it is a good practice.





On Friday we visited the first project of our group. So here we will look at different projects, at these places we will ‘work’ the coming months. This means that we’ll learn from there and they can learn from us. We will work together with the locals. The first project we visited was the preschool. First they had a small ceremony. It was really interesting to see the difference with there and with NL. After the ceremony we could join the kids in their classes and see how everything works there.


That same day we also visited another project place in a small fisherman village next to Lovina. From here we walked a little further through a really nice place. It was only very hot, because it was the middle of the day. After we ate lunch at a little fancier restaurant we went to the beach again. From there I went back home with Sanne and went to the brown house (somewhere else in Singaraja). From here we went to the store, and later we met up with the group again to buy some helmets for the scooters. Don’t worry, we did have one. But they were rentals. Because a helmet is not that expensive here and I’m not sure what happened to the one I got, I bought a new one. In this way I’m sure it is a good and save helmet. In the evening we ate with the whole group at the white house. It was very spicy though. So I only ate my rice.. When we got home that evening we found lots of ants. We also found our first lizard in the house. He was very cute! 😉



(I’m wearing the facemask for dusty roads)

On Saturday we went with one other house to the waterfalls. It was so pretty there. It was a beautiful hike where we could swim, jump and slide. First we went to a place called ‘blue lagon’. Here we could swim and do some small jumps. This summer I couldn’t make it to the blue lagoon in Iceland, so now I’ve still been there in Bali. After the short swim we walked further to the next waterfalls. It was so pretty. At the next waterfalls we could slide down a waterfall, which was pretty cool. We could also jump from the rocks from 5m, 10m and 15m. I did all of these jumps.






After the waterfalls we walked further to a place where we got fresh coconut. I really wanted to try to cut to coconut myself. It was so hard! So after I finally got the bottom straight the local person took over and cut the rest of the coconut in less than half the time I cut the bottom off. Later I also opened to coconut myself to eat the fresh coconut.


On the way back from the waterfalls we stopped at the most beautiful pool ever! Here we also had our dinner, where they took a picture that is posted on the Instagram account of the pool. Not gonna say too much about this. You should just see the pictures!!





On Sunday we went to the rice fields. It was very beautiful. The rice was just harvested and the land was dry. It is very different from what you expect with rice fields then (I expected it to be very wet). After we got back from our walk we ate the local food that was made while we were making.




On the way back we went swimming by a pool in Lovina. If we bought a drink we could go in here, so that’s a very good deal I think.


When we came home we saw the neighbors were home. So we introduced ourselves there. They were very happy to meet us. But I think they didn’t understand everything that we were saying. Also when we came we could go straight in there house where we got something to drink and where were a lot of people. The whole room was full looking at us. The neighbors seem very nice!


This morning (Monday) we had to be at a middle school at 7am. Here they had this special ceremony that they do every Monday. I forgot to bring a bottle of water. So that’s kinda stupid. There were more people who needed something from the store, so we went there real quickly. After that we went to Putu Tastre, he is the head of the cultural things in the Buleleng area. He explained us some of the projects. Also was the location we were at the location of one of the projects. It was a museum and a palace. It was very pretty there.


After that we went to another project. Only the group broke up in 3 groups, I was in the second and we didn’t know where to go to. We did eventually find it by going up a pretty dangerous and steep hill. There was another way to get there, but we didn’t know. When we finally arrived we had to leave soon too again to go to the university.

Around noon we were at the university. Here we will get classes in Bahasa Indonesia and in the culture. We got to know some of the people there and payed our tuition for these months. After we filled everything out and payed we could go again. In two weeks our classes will start. So before that we will have 2 days off next week.




After this week I am already really tired. So I went home after visiting Undiskha, the university, while other students still went to a pool at a hotel in Singaraja. Here I just rest now and I am writing my blog because I have some free time.

I lived here for a week now and think that the people here are very sweet. Not everyone speaks English. But with my basic words, google translate, arms and legs people can understand me. I noticed that there are a lot of stray dogs around here. Also the traffic is crazy, people here drive left and just honk when they pass you. Then you have to make sure there is enough space next to you, because people are still passing you while there is traffic coming from the other side. Also stuff here is really cheap compared to the Netherlands. So as you might have noticed. We go out to eat very often. It costs only like 2 buck for some food, when you buy this and you have to cook it might be a little cheaper but not as good. And for those 2 bucks you get a good meal with enough food. In the Netherlands you might pay like 10 bucks for a small meal. So if you see that comparison it is better to buy food at restaurants here. We could also get food for 50 cents, but this is really from the streets which I don’t trust (yet). I do want to make sure my stomach gets used to the food here too. I try to avoid spicy food.

Well that’s about it I guess. Tomorrow and the coming week will be very busy for me with visiting more projects. I’ll try to write soon again if I have some time!

Terima kasih for reading!!! Sampai jumpa!!

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