Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Bali adventure

My friend Steve just got back from several weeks of exploring Bali. He hosted a potluck and at the end of the night I finally got to hear one of the countless stories recounting his time spent in this tropical paradise. Being a surfer and at one time a traveler, I listened intently as he related an experience which exemplifies the paradoxical nature of human beings.

Steve related how one day Peter and he awoke and decided to just drive and see where the road took them. Along the way, the natives were incredibly hospitable. All were full of smiles and welcoming spirits. Everyone that saw them seemed overjoyed and fascinated by these world travelers. Seemingly, Steve and Peter had gone well off the beaten path and were mingling with those unused to the presence of ocean-crossing tourists. Eventually, they chanced upon a temple. Upon trying to enter, Peter was stopped. Through gestures and body language the message was conveyed: One could not enter the temple without a sarong. Someone ended up lending Peter one and they were allowed to pass the threshold. They walked up the steps and were surprised to hear the commotion of yelling and cheering. Upon making their way thru the crowd, they were shocked to see cock fighting. Each rooster had razor blades taped to their toes. It was incredibly brutal and shockingly crass - gambling in the temple on roosters killing eachother.

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