The Long Journey Home travel blog

Monday, March 10:

Today we rented motorbikes to ride around the island.

We started out with breakfast at our lovely Grandma’s Hotel. From there, we took a taxi to Quyen and Dan’s hotel. He drove us in circles since we insisted on him using the meter and we were a little annoyed with him. How annoyed can you really be in paradise, though? We arrived at their hotel (which is not nearly as nice as ours) and laid by the pool until our motorbikes arrived. We got a map, chose our route and started off on our journey. We decided to explore the bottom of the island because the locals told us some of the best beaches were there. We drove, and got really lost, for about an hour before we found a narrow road that wound down to the ocean. We got to the bottom to find a beautiful beach club, but they wanted 250,000Rp or 25 bucks a person for us to enjoy their beach. We decided to keep trekking and found a serene beach that was mainly just for locals. We bought 3 umbrellas and enjoyed the ocean, coral sand and beach-side caves for the day. We got back on our bikes about an hour before sunset so that we could see the sun set one last time in Seminyak. On our journey back in to the tourist area, we were stopped by the Polisi. They pulled over our 3 scooters and asked us to drive into a secluded parking lot. Once inside, they told us that we would either have to take a ticket for 500,000Rp ($50) or pay them off. We bartered down the cost of our payoff, but I was livid that we were trapped in this situation. I took out my iPod and told him that I was going to take a picture of his badge for verification with the police department and him and his partner freaked out. They told us to leave and were practically pushing us out onto the street. As we were leaving, we saw that they had pulled over 4 more foreigners on scooters. They probably make so much money off of us. I wanted to take the ticket (which they couldn’t actually validate since we didn’t have any ID on us), but Cody thought we should just pay them off. We ended up getting to the beach right in time for sunset and grabbed a couple of beers on bean bags to unwind and forget the events. For dinner, we met up with another girl we met that lives in Gabon, Africa, and got fresh Mahi Mahi tacos near the beach. Overall, it was a good day.

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