New Year in Gili

So after staying up late after our New Year celebrations in Bali and getting only 3 - 4 hours of sleep, we woke up bright and early to take a 9.00am ferry out to Giliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii.

1 January 2015 (Thursday)

We arrived at Gili at about 12.30pm, earlier than the check-in time which was supposed to be 3pm but the villa we stayed at made quick arrangements so we could check in earlier! Yay for Kelapa Luxury Villas! ♥


Look at the three of us, attempting synchronized swimming bahahahaha

Anyway, we got the 3-bedroom villa named Villa Orchid and it was such an awesome villa to lepak lepak!!!!! The food was great and the service was excellent too, we had absolutely no complains. We were checked in by their staff Bayu, who was very friendly and helpful and patient!

The location of Kelapa Luxury Villas itself is a little dalam for my liking though, it's not by the beach or anything, so we had to take horse carriages in to reach the villa. Villa provided bicycles so it's a 10 minutes' ride to the main shops and restaurants.

We ordered food in since we were too lazy and tired to cycle out. Spent time swimming and chatting and napping before taking horse carriages out to our very special dinner on our first night in Gili.

Why special? Because.....


..... our dear Fattah proposed to our dear Faezah lah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GOT SO LOMANTIK NOT KENA PROPOSE ON GILI BEACH. 

Part kena propose tu memang lomantik ah. Part nak kena plan surprise dengan the groom-to-be tu more like lunatik aku jadinya hahahahaha.

I think we almost blew our cover a few times planning for this surprise wedding proposal lor! But everything turned out really, really, really nice and heartwarming in the end, although I couldn't believe it when the bride-to-be started crying halfway?!!! I'll spare her from embarassment and not post her weepy face shots here lah hahaha. But don't both of them look so damn radiant in the above picture awwwww

Okaylah, actually I know why she started crying, it was quite sebak okay, they've been together since FOREVER (Okay, when we were all 14) and like what I said to Faezah right after I congratulated her... "Long time coming, isn't it, babe?" I was there when they first met and to see them happily arrive at this life chapter after so many trials and tribulations is truly an amazing thing, and an honour of sorts.

After rounds of congratulations and toasts and "selamats" (hahaha inside joke) we tucked into dinner which was fully paid for by the groom-to-be WOOHOO SIAPA NAK MINTAK AKU TOLONG PLANKAN PROPOSAL DINNER LAI LAI haha

And when dinner ends, that's where the kuda story starts. 

It was quite late when we were done with dinner so the streets were deadly quiet and dark since Gili kan belum fully developed. No proper roads and no proper lights to illuminate the way when you want to travel around the island.

Since we didn't want to walk back to the villa in the dark with our stuffed tummies and we didn't have our bicycles with us, we got the restaurant staff to arrange for 2 sets of horse carriages to bring us back to our villa (which came after 1 hour by the way, geram je aku tak boleh picit 6552 1111)

Faezah, Saliheen and I took the first horse carriage together and as we were cutting through the forested area in the darkness, with only the rhythmic sounds of the horse's feet click clacking through the bumpy tracks and the mud sloshing under the carriage wheels when suddenly... *BAM* OUR HORSE WENT NUTZO LAH SIAL.

He started neighing hysterically and started kicking its legs up into the sky and our carriage rattled so much from his sudden jerks and jolts that our carriage almost toppled over!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



TAK KELAKAR BEB. 

Itu kuda pikir dia geng kuda kepang beb.

The first thing that flashed through my mind was this is it, this horse is going to gallop too fast, too crazed, too erratic for its jockeys to catch up and we are going to spend the next few seconds deciding whether to jump off the carriage, roll onto the muddy tracks and risk sustaining injuries as we crash through the roadside graves (there were plenty on the way to our villa) or hang on for dear life not knowing where this freaking kuda is going to gallop towards in the dark and just fervently hope it doesn't slam the carriage away and hurt us in the process.

But lucky there were 2 jockeys (More like 1 jockey and his friend decided to come along on his night shift lolz) because both of them managed to grasp the carriage ropes in time as the horse surged forward and somehow found the super strength to rein the horse in time. Kita kat belakang dah tersynchronized ah kita punya WHOAAAWHOAWHOAwhoaWHoawhoooaaaWHoa macam choir tak bertauliah.

It took them about 5 minutes to sort of calm down the horse and guide the horse back ke pangkal jalan. I think it was about that time I decided I wasn't going to return to fucking Gili until they pave proper roads so we can move around on motorbikes or buggy carts, at least! #pamperedcitygal

Besides it was quite kesian to see the horsies trudging along all around Gili! Apparently the horses are well fed and they work in shifts but, you know... still.

Oh, and in case you need some visual aid, horse carriages in Gili look something like these:


Check out how 'open' the carriage is yer. Nasib baik aku berat geng, kalau kudut confirm aku dah slip through and tercampak keluar. Well, come to think of it, maybe kerana aku and Saliheen berat, the kuda tetiba mengamuk and nak mogok kot??? Hahaha ha ha ha ha ha


2 January 2015 (Friday)

Group snorkelling the next day! Honestly, I wasn't keen to go because: 

(1) I promised myself I'd take it slow in Gili (which part of snorkelling is relaxing, you tell me?) 

(2) I've snorkelled in Maldives which was already gorgeous and memorable - how can Gili top that?  

(3) I'm not really a water activities person (I love everything that has to do with the sky - parasailing, bungee jumping, skydiving, count me in. But the sea? Nah-uh, not my thing) 

But Saliheen didn't want to go if I didn't, and I know how much he loooooves the water and when he's happy, I'm happy so kita pergi lor. 


Unfortunately I wasn't particularly impressed by the spots we went to at all, there was a lot of rubbish in the sea, and when I saw one packet of Indomie trapped under a reef underwater and three freaking plastic bags floating around me at one particular area, I lost it. Sat out the rest of the snorkelling trip ha ha. Part balek seram sikit because the skies were dark, the rain threatened to pour and our little boat was getting whipped back and forth by angry waves.

Part dah sampai balek villa lagi best and what I was looking forward to because after washing up, it was time for our massages! Arranged for in-villa massages and even though getting massaged on sun-chair cushions laid out on our villa bedroom floor weren't my idea of an ideal massage experience, the quality of the massage more than made up for it.

The masseuse I got was soooooooo good!!! I told her all about my abused thighs from trekking in Bali and expected the pain to be unbearable when she started kneading my thighs but there was no such thing. She was so gentle but so so so effective!!! All the knots and aches in my joints and thighs were all gone by the time I slipped her the huge tip she deserves lah!

Anyway, we timed our in-villa massages such that when we were done, our in-villa barbeque session would have already started... and it did. Perfectly on time. YUM YUM YUM! 



Sorry, gambar makanan blur sikit sebab aku dah excited and tak sabar nak makan haha. And actually ada banyak lagi dishes but no need to see lah, just know that they were all sedap. Everything was grilled to perfection!!! Needless to say, we had a nice hearty meal on our last night in Gili :)

3 January 2015 (Saturday)

Nothing much to say pasal our last morning in Gili ah, we had our usual breakfast, rode out to Ombak Sunset for more photos on their famous swing (see below), did some last minute shopping and then headed back to Bali to catch our flight home. 


I think the journey from Gili to Bali made this one of the worst days from this trip? We had to wait for close to 2 hours for the ferry in Gili, we were in the ferry which was thrashing through crazy waves for close to 4 hours (when it was supposed to be less than 2 hours) and then another 2 hours inside a cramped passenger van which brought us to the airport in Bali.

(Apparently we were stuck in the ferry at sea for almost 4 hours because the sea went wild and the waves went higher than the ferry sampai my friends started fearing the worse and looking out for exit points lol can you believe I freaking slept through it all?  I've always thought that in cases of emergencies, I'd be the first one to die because I'm always so clueless and ignorant of my surroundings)

Will I return to Gili again?

That last day really made me re-think as to whether I would return to Gili again, honestly. The exhaustion from travelling to and fro Bali and Gili sucked. The journey was time consuming and energy sapping and takes the fun out of a relaxing beach holiday, imho.

The food was good and the beaches were pretty and blue on the surface but I also couldn't get past having to choose between horse carriage, bicycle or my own pair of legs to move around the island. Too much time, too much hassle.

If I ever do return, it's because they've done something about their transportation choices and I'd fly out to Lombok instead of Bali before taking a ferry out to Gili so that the travelling time will be quicker. I'd also choose accommodation that is on the beach and near the famous Ombak Sunset swing, like Hotel Ombak Sunset.

Will I return to Bali again?

As for Bali (which I've blogged about here), I'm really not that thrilled about it either. Which sucks because I know it's because of my own personal experience? It was my first time in Bali and everyone who's been in Bali told me before I left that I will love Bali and what it has to offer. I did not.

I got hassled everywhere I went, almost every seller I encountered was aggressive or out to cheat, the traffic jams were unbearable and a colossal waste of time (apparently only during New Year period though!), I didn't get to taste enough good authentic Balinese food, I was blindsided into doing outdoorsy shit that my body and I were not prepared for (e.g. trekking downwards for millions of miles before water rafting), I didn't get to have proper good time to relax on the beach, I didn't get to be at places I wanted to be because we were either short on time or everywhere was jam packed.

I won't write off Bali completely, though. I don't mind returning to give it another chance but I'll probably do it differently: 

(1) Choose another area other than Seminyak (Shopping not so shiok and no street food in Seminyak wtf)

(2) Choose a villa that is nearer to the beach 

(2) Take it slow and not pack too many activities in one day. I'd want time to go Tanah Lot and Waterbom!

(3) Get a good knowledgable driver who will not be goblok and recommend shitty places out of his ass

(4) GO TO BALI DURING OFF PEAK PERIODS GODDAMNIT.

Will I travel overseas again to celebrate the New Year? 

Sure. But only if it comes with a nice private villa by the beach, with my husband, who will not mind celebrating the stroke the midnight with cuddles by our private pool instead of battling it out with swarms of sweaty slimy revellers. Other than that... KIRIM SALAM SUDAH.

7 comments

  1. You're not alone.. I didn't fall in love with Bali like everyone else I know. But I think I'm willing to give it another shot haha.

    Also "Kita kat belakang dah tersynchronized ah kita punya WHOAAAWHOAWHOAwhoaWHoawhoooaaaWHoa macam choir tak bertauliah." <-- I was trying soooo hard to suppress my laughter in the office!!!! Hahaha

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    1. You too?!?! I figured it's because I went during the crazy busy New Year period and didn't get to enjoy much but deep down inside, I know any part of Indonesia is just not for me... I guess I'll forever be #teamThailandFTW hehe

      Hahahahaha we were all in shock ok!!! Only after the whole thing was over baru kita realize how ridiculous all of us sounded hahaha

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  2. I went to bali for my honeymoon and i think i swore(hahaha so serious kan) not coming back ever again. My preferred beach destination is krabi!

    Your experience on the kuda is very scary.. do you think the kuda saw a jembalang walking past sebab itu terus jadi kuda kepang? Thank goodness you're back home safely..

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    1. YAY HIGH FIVE! We are obviously #teamThailandFTW

      I really hope it wasn't a jembalang! We agreed that it was probably because the kuda was having trouble with the weight and since the tempat jalan in Gili banyak lobang lobang and was muddy and slippery (baru habis hujan), I think the kuda just gave up and struggled :(

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  3. This is the first time I've heard that Bali isn't as awesome as what some has claimed. You laid out the other side to the place where people rarely talk about. I really appreciate the experiences you shared :)

    I'm hoping Lombok would be a wee bit better since its known to be the sister to Bali.

    Glad you came back in one piece despite the occurrences!

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    1. I think it might be because the driver I got was lousy and I went during a crazy packed weekend :(

      I heard Lombok is peaceful and gorgeous, are you travelling there soon? I'm sure you'll enjoy it!

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  4. Yeap! Going Lombok some time in August this year, I hope it will be an enjoyable one :p

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