Thursday, October 27, 2011

A brief update

Bali  has a new bus system. It appears to be working in spite of  its many problems. A  critique can be found here. Despite the pessimism a working bus system is inevitable if the Island is to avoid choking on its own success.

Property prices in Bali are going up up up. Its unbelievable what people are willing to pay for a chunk of swamp without sewage, electricity or water. 300 million rupiah /are now seems to be the going rate in some parts of semminyak. Some very average villas here are now going for 15 million rupiah/month. At these prices its tempting to move and rent out my house but the next question would be to move where?

The beachfront in Kuta is finally resembling something other than a collection of abandoned buildings. There are a lot of new shiny hotels all across the street from the beach. Access to Kuta is still hopelessly snarled amidst the narrow convoluted streets, the surfeit of taxis and the  interminable "proyek galian" (excavations) tearing up the roadways.

The massive developments in south Bali (and they are massive) are serviced by a tiny 2-lane road from Jimbaran to Bukit. Traffic along here can only get worse as these developments fill in. As it is now you are totally screwed going uphill at 4:30 pm and downhill at 7:00 PM (tour buses to Uluwatu).

I'm not sure of the reasoning but the developers in Pecatu placed a large water park in the middle of a luxury housing development and golf course. Perhaps they should have sold the houses first but I find it difficult to imagine some wealthy pensioner buying a house with 100 decibel bass pumping out some techno beat at 10:00  AM overdubbed with some idiot presenter screaming into a microphone. Just what I like with my morning coffee and porridge.

The little golf driving range in Tuban is gone - victim to the ever expanding Ngurah Rai Airport. I think that it has been gone for some time but I'm only now getting around to mentioning it. Pity. It was the cheapest and best kept secret in Bali.

Finally I have to say that I lost one dog while I was away and a new one seems to be hanging around in its place. The lost one was a bit touched from the day we found him so I'm not totally surprised. The new dog is a friendly type with an unfortunate habit of digging up the lawn. Not sure how to cure him of that.

Having a heck of a time organising my next work trip abroad. More on that later.