Thursday, September 16, 2010

Beautiful Ubud and Tjampuhan River

After the difficulties facing us in Legian for accom’ we were somewhat nervous heading off to Ubud with nothing booked, we had 2 weeks ahead of us and Gabe had been having a little trouble settling here.
Home School Diaries at Casa Luna

The kids had spent a day on the beach a couple of days ago and although slathered in sunscreen refused to listen to us telling them they needed to get out of the sun, the result…………… neon red children!

Not only the kids, Daryll & I had been very dedicated not to be in the sun, knowing how quickly it can burn fair skin, we sat all day under an umbrella – only later to be informed “oh those things, they are UV protective, the sun just goes right through them even though you are in the shade” yep, we sure found that out the hard way.

Ubud Monkey
So with everyone resembling lobsters popped into a pot of boiling water, we decided the sharing a bed thing just didn’t work for the kids.
Every few minutes one would roll over and kick the other in the sunburn where a gut wrenching shriek that I am sure startled even the Ubud monkeys would ensue.

One of the things that you are really never fully prepared for in parenthood is the absolute lack of sleep, however, once the youngest is 6 years old, you get lulled into thinking it’s over and you can sleep again, it’s only when they get sick (or sunburnt) that those memories of being up every 15 minutes (for ever!) seem to emerge.

We therefore decided that a double bed or 2 singles for the kids was a must in Ubud.

We hired a driver whop assured us, he’d drive us to a few and we’d find something we liked.
True to his word, the first place he took us was lovely (350,000 / US $35 per night for 4 including breakfast), however so was the next sand the next, it became difficult to choose and we felt spoilt with the choice.

Our cottage at Tjampuhan Spa Hotel
Driving past Tjampuhan Spa Hotel I wistfully said to Daryll “Hmmm, I’ve always wanted to stay there”, ‘well, let’s then” he said “trust in your abundance Les”, so we asked the driver to turn in, he looked and said “no, very expensive here”, we assured him it was OK and just looking. He shrugged and pulled in.

Arriving at reception, we were told “all full, people have been asking all day” just as we turned to leave the manager said “wait, I have a thought, maybe you like old house……….. maybe free in half an hour”.
OK, we asked “how much” US$135 for 3 including breakfast and 2 big beds, we had decided our budget was around $50 per night, but decided OK if it was meant to be. However, our driver needed to get back and couldn’t wait and they wouldn’t know for 30 minutes if it was free.

TjampuhanSpa Hotel Cottage - Banyan 1
We decided to keep looking, but left our mobile number, we drove a short while up the hill, looked at another hotel, equally lovely, but certainly lacked the charm of the previous, just as we were about to agree a message popped in saying “Banyan 1 room free for you”.

We looked at each other “I don’t know” I said to Daryll, it’s 3 nights and 3 times our budget.
He looked at me and said, “OK, how much do you trust your abundance, CAN you manifest this immediately, I mean – today – within the next hour, well can you? Do you really trust yourself?”

Why is it so hard to back down when someone challenges you, I guess it’s that indeterminable spirit that pushes evolution to press the boundaries and keep trying, always searching for something just beyond our grasp, to make the intangible tangible.
“Absolutely, I answered” feeling just a little uncertain.

We turned around and returned, as we arrived at the counter some women were asking for a room, they winked at us and replied to them “sorry, all full”.

Flying Squirrels leap around trees from our windows
We checked in and were greeted with delightful cool towels and welcome cocktails.
They gave us papers on the history of the hotel and welcomed us warmly, setting off for a walk before lunch, Daryll smiled and said “OK, there you go, divinely organized, as it should be, you have until after lunch to simply manifest another $500 – OK”

Off we went for a divine lunch at Indus where the most glorious views await here of the Tjampuhan river and the gorge, set over lush rice paddies. This is a sister restaurant to Casa Luna and equally as wonderful with their food, drinks and service.

TjampuhanValley Sacred River

Returning, we checked into our room, it was reminiscent of a tree house, high up in the forest with glorious old fashioned  poster beds, the kids rushed in and Emma squealed “oh look at your beautiful bed mummy” we looked around at the even larger bed and said “no darling that’s your bed” The grin on their faces was worth it all, at that moment they squealed at the windows as flying squirrels leapt from tree to tree high up outside the windows and they raced to the balcony to get a glorious view of the river and the forest.

TjampuhanSpa carved king beds
TjampuhanSpa underground Hot Springs & Grotto
They were yet to learn of the Spa here, but that’s another blog story……….. Oh and in case you wondered about my challenge, we checked the internet (at the wi fi hotspot in the lobby) and yes, we received a websale for $505 whilst we were having lunch)