Tuesday, February 21

Back to Australia and life goes on......

My flight from Denpasar was due to leave at 10 minutes past midnight, and my driver picked me up in Ubud at around 8 pm.  It was quite a 'hairy' ride through the crazy villages, with little or no street lights and people everywhere, but interesting to see.

Where are all the women?  The men were on the streets, drinking, playing table tennis, shuttle cock or pool, and there were few women or children to be seen.  The women I was told, would be home preparing for the markets at 4 am, and caring for the children.  The men, often drunk, would head home late at night, and sleep in, while their women folk were at work.  It sure is a 'man's world' in Bali, but the sound of it.

I arrived at the airport in plenty of time, luckily as it was quite chaotic.  There is a new international airport being built, so there are few/no upgrades in the old one, and even finding where I had to go presented challenges.

I managed to get to the gate in plenty of time and found a little cafe where I sat with a cold drink to wait until called.  Called?  In that part of the airport there was no signage and no public address system.  I learned that there were two planes leaving from that gate around the same time.  When I saw people walking through the gate I asked if it was the Brisbane plane, and I was (without a spoken word) ushered through the door and directed to a bus.

When the bus was 'loaded' the driver took us on a journey around planes around the tarmac, and stopped occasionally to ask the grown crew "Sydney?"  Other passengers and I were alarmed as we were all going to Brisbane, but when we told him he looked at us without the slightest indication he understood, and went on his way "Sydney?"

When he eventually stopped and opened the bus doors, we cautiously walked up the stairs of the nearest plane, and sure, this was the flight to Brisbane.  We were quite surprised to learn that there were only 30 or 40 passengers and all of us were able to claim a three seat spot, and lie down.  It was not terribly comfortable with chair parts prodding one, and for some of us, wishing for more leg room, it was a challenge, but I had enough sleep to make the night go fast.

It was not long before we were to arrive in Brisbane.

MM was there to meet me, and I was quickly back to our daughters for a cup of coffee and collect my car.  I had 5 nights in a friend's place at Manly, before returning to the house sit.  Oh, how good to be back 'home'.

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