A guest post of early 1970 Kuta days….

Your blog correspondent has returned home, his son having scored early, double-overhead waves that made the chest-high stuff later on too boring for him. Let me haul up a comment on an earlier post which came in this past week…it deserves its own post. Thanks, Donna!

*****

I was a young trainee nurse and decided to go to Bali with a friend in the early 70′s. I still get that wonderful feeling when you fly into Bali and look out of the plane window. Back then it was mainly all palm trees!
We stayed at the Ramayana Seaside Cottages, Sari Beach Inn, Puri Damai, 3 Brothers Inn, Melasti etc etc
Nights out were at Gado Gado, Kayu Api, Peanuts. Norms Bar was owned by Nyoman who was a legend because he was the only Balinese that had been to Australia and they called him Norman or Norm. He used to come out and drink with the crowd late at night and they had great drinking games there.
There were many, many places along the beach that people sat around and had mushroom soup or omelettes and then enjoyed the sunset
There was only one disco on the island back in the early 70′s at Bali Hyatt and you only went there for a real special occasion. There was only one Western doctor – he was a German guy at Bali Hyatt too.
To get mail you had to cycle or bike ride to the one post agency to check Poste Restante and making a phone call was a nightmare.
Days were spent at the local markets and stalls along the road. I used to sit outside the little shopfronts/stalls and make offerings and the ladies plaited and braided my long hair in Balinese style.
We ate at places like Poppies,Dayu 1 or 2, Kintamani (Asia) restaurant, night markets in Denpasar, Mama’s
We wore sarongs and sandals most days and if we decided to go to a “nice” place we just stopped at a stall and bought a top and skirt or dress and a pair of size 38 cloth shoes. Our sarong and sandals were put inside our batik shoulder bags and off we went.
If it was late afternoon rain we wore our bikinis on the walk to Legian and bought new dry clothes there!
We went to tooth filing ceremonies and cremations and helped with the village preparations.
We took the ferry to Lombok where we were greeted like movie stars as they had not seen any “white girls” with light or blonde hair.
I am blessed to have spent early days there before it became a tourist mecca. Fond memories indeed. I was in Bali a few months ago and I took some maps of the area back then and some old photos and the Balinese loved to look at the differences and the places where there are now roads and massive shopping complexes etc
Just my memories
Donna

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3 Responses to A guest post of early 1970 Kuta days….

  1. Donna says:

    Thanks for the guest spot J

    Cheers

    Made Donna now Ibu Donna

  2. Colin De Lore says:

    First time 1976 ,it was adventures in paradise my first travel overseas part of the ” Easy Rider Tour Generation”.Things have changed but it is a special place , lets treat it kindly.The Bali Hyatt the only place to go for a dance then,Kuta and Legian separated by Jungle i went back in 2011 couldnt find Sukkaharta lost in the redevelopment.Anyway more thoughts next time. Tall Man

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