Ubud Diaries: Day 01



I’m up early, I’m excited, and I’m getting ready for the first day of the festival. There’s a lot to get through in the welcome bag, but I grab my Speaker tag and my Guest tag for my manager, N. We call the front desk to pick us up, ride down the buggy to the restaurant, and have our breakfast.


During breakfast, N points out that it comes with free sparkling wine, and I mean, we had to. The sun is brighter in this part of the world, we clink our glasses over mushroom omelettes, and look across the rice fields that surrounds us. The liason tells us our car has arrived, and we head to the city.


We sit at the beautiful, white table in Indus with a whole spread [my favourite of the day: sate, yellow rice, iced tea] in front of us. We’re at the Patron’s Brunch at Indus. There are our patrons and there are the emerging writers. We talk about cities, art, travelling, etc. I also met my patron, Karen, who talked to me about literature and libraries.


After the brunch, we decide to take a walk around the area. We find a small art gallery and shop, and a swing. We finally settle in a cafe called Dharma, a cafe right by the side of the road that was recommended to us by the patrons, and we order es kopi susu. There was a little corner for crafts, and we bought two matching friendship bracelets.


We have a late coffee with M, and with our friends from Malang, Ayu and Ajip. We decided to meet at Milk & Madu, where we had seafood pizza and Coronas. Our meeting was brief because we had to prepare for the gala, but it was absolutely lovely. It also happened to be Ayu’s birthday [if you’re reading this, happy birthday, my love –– I still owe you a gift!]


We head to Fresh Spa for a little hair touch-up. The place is quaint and filled with a beautiful scent. I wish I had time to stretch out in their wicker so far, and get a manicure or a massage, while looking out at the city, but next time.


Gala at the Ubud Royal Palace, where we had white wine, met writers we loved and adored, and watched traditional dances. It was a beautiful night, full of heat, but still relaxing enough to take a walk afterwards.


Brief dinner at Uno, before our dinner, at Casa Luna. We had Tagliatelle Marinana, it was sumptous and hearty, and the entire place was bathed in pink neon light. Walked over to Casa Luna where we ate, again, and had white wine, again.


Walked around the area for around 20 minutes and had a drink at a bar (I forgot which one, sorry!). We talked about the full moon and how blessed we were to be there on that bright night.

Filled with happiness and white wine, we head over to the hotel for a long bath, and a long sleep.