On Wednesday, October 13, I got up at dawn and grabbed a few more flowers from the market and from the Jalan Raya Peliatan. Beautiful watermelon colored heliconias and bags of petals.
I zoomed into the Regency of Karangasem and dialled my friend Fran the Croupier, who lives in Padangbai. Her two day headache was a thing of the past, and, yes, she would help me host the big writer lunch at Tanjung Sakti. I made the detour into Padangbai, the bustling port. I bought ice and boxes of tissue - decorated with reef fish, go figure - and turned up at her gate. She hopped into the car and we drove to Seraya.
My handphone rings.
It's Wayan, my cook.
Yude has called me from Casa Luna... the party is off due to lack of interest. Four people showed up for the bus ride to east bali salt and sugar plants and they all wanted to leave the event early... oh, dear. So that was that. No lunch at my place.
I drove into my parking area and sighed. All of my staff were dressed in their special polo shirts with Tanjung Sakti badges. Very sharp. but it would be lunch for two. Ah, it's okay. I spent awhile getting flowers into pots and the place, oh, the place looked stunning. Pool's never been cleaner, the penjors looked wonderful in the steady sea breeze, and a bottle of Margaret River wine was chilling in the fridge.
I gave Cakra two envelopes of consolation pay to give to the two guys who were booked to come and play Gerentang. That's the bamboo instruments, tuned slightly off from each other to resonate well. They were to provide a little ambient music for the visitors.
Oh, well, so Fran and I had a good chat and I worked on some poetry and prose texts to bring to the festival. It was actually a restful day. The writers missed out on a gorgeous east Bali afternoon, but there's an upside to all this... the event was staged as a diversion for our author visitors. The fact that almost no one wanted to go to east Bali shows that the festival was just so much fun, who could bear to leave it, even for half a day?
Fran left for John's house at sunset, and I spent the night at home in my own bed.
Next morning, after pineapple and coffee, I got right back into the gold Toyota Kijang and blasted off to Ubud. Yeah, that was Wednesday.
Sorry to have missed some of the events back at the festival, but on the bright side the lack of interest in Janet's east Bali tour means one thing. NO ONE WANTED TO LEAVE UBUD. The writers all were having such a marvelous time at the festival... they didn't need a distraction like a trip to east Bali. A very good indicator of the festival's success.
So no hard feelings at all. Glad to be of service to the fest.