Friday, June 26, 2009

Bali Day 3

This morning at 7am all the pool lounges were tagged by personal possessions. One featured a Lufhansa beach ball. The same ball was still there at 2.30pm...enough said!

I don’t normally read when there are other distractions like TV. But in Bali TV is 2/10 and yesterday I read the latest Tim Winton book, ‘Breath’.

I am a Tim Winton fan and his books
have always just felt right. It is probably because he is a Western
Australian and I know the places he talks about and I have known most of the characters.

One of his best, I think, was ‘Cloudstreet’ set in suburban Perth in the late 1940s. Sometimes I think he is a fan of another similar writer Tom Hungerford who is now in his nineties. Tom; and I feel I can call him Tom because he was a childhood friend of my mother, writes with a suburban feel in his anthology of short stories named ‘Stories from Suburban Road’. It is very similar in some ways to Winton’s ‘Cloudstreet’. I suspect Winton is a Hungerford reader!

Hungerford wrote two novels in the 1950s, one dealing with his wartime experiences in New Guinea. It is a great read, but only published in Australia, it entered a quite small market. It might well be that had he published ‘The Ridge and the River’ in the 70s, people would have been prepared to look at war as a topic again?

Anyway, back to ‘Breath’. The first third of the book built the strong characters of the story and the last third a successful denouement.
The middle section of the book appeals to surfers and left me a little frustrated that I had to wade through so much to get the guts of the story.

Nevertheless I would love to be
able to write like both authors, just like I would love to be able to play guitar like Tommy Emmanuel… ain’t gonna happen!.

When we went out to the front of the hotel to meet with Wally, our booked taxi man, he wasn’t there. Kev had the once in a lifetime opportunity to ask “Where’s Wally?”, but nobody got the joke. Wally didn’t turn up on time and other drivers gave us various reasons why he didn’t and why we should take their cab. ‘His radiator has broken’, ‘He is sick’ were a couple. We gave Wal about 15 extra minutes and then we took another bloke.

Kuta is a very busy place and is teeming with scammers. We’ve seen the scam before. A scratch card is given ‘Free’ and every one is a winner. All you have to do to collect your free dinner prize is attend a dinner party where the timeshare spiel is given. No thanks!

Another annoying thing about large stores in Bali is that most, if not all, the staff is on commission and when escaping the street spruikers by dashing into a department store you find a new lot working in the store trying very hard to sell their wares.

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