Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Son of Bali, Belle and Sebastain, and a Bottle of Water

Well, I was listening to Belle and Sebastain while I was writing the title, but then it ended and something else came on and it was Tuesday's gone by Metallica and friends and well this is a good song too but I don't want to lead any astray by my title; this blog no longer powered by belle and sebastain.

So before I get started with my 'rest 'o Bali' blog, I want to address the fact that I just watched Elisabethtown, and fucking loved it. I hadn't seen it until now because the critics massacred it, and I try to not waste my time with movies that like 90% of the critics hated (unless it's a comedy. Critics just don't get comedy), but I loved this movie. Maybe I was seduced by the best soundtrack I've ever heard, maybe I'm a sucker for great romantic flicks, all I know is that I'm offering my props to Elisabethtown right now.



Right as the insane drug binge was winding down and we were basking in the afterglow of the night, wishing we had some pot and sitting on our back balcony, bare feet dangling in the pool and stars being way too beautiful for their own good, someone had the thought:

"Maybe we should have saved this sort of crazy night for sometime when we aren't going river rafting tomorrow."

We were headed 3 hours up the island to go river-rafting on the Ayung River and we maybe got an hour of sleep before that.

We woke up to the rafting guy calling our rooms, obviously everyone slept through the various wakeup calls and alarms that went off for a while, to be killed in favor of blissful silence.

But this man would not be slienced (I thought about killing him, despite his good intentions in trying to take us rafting through a rainforest) and we pulled ourselves out of the hotel and into his van.

Driving around Bali is really scary. They drive on the other side of the road, which always takes a bit of adjustment on my part ("DEAR LORD WE'RE ON THE WRONG SIDE AIIIIIE" every time I'm dozing and wake up) and they really like passing each other all the time, on crowded, two lane roads. I'd say 70% of the people on the road are driving mopeds (gas has recently become very, very expensive on Bali. The Hindus blame the new Muslim government entirely, as Gas prices have gone up 300% since the Muslim government stepped in 3 years ago. At least this is what Wyan says)

Anyways, so you'll be drivng along the road somewhere in a mountainous rainforest area, and a pack of mopeds will swoop past you, managing to get back into their lane mere seconds before a huge truck zooms by. This is whith everyone honking the whole time. In Bali, a honk just means, "hey, I'm behind you," or "I'm about to pass you," or "hey man, what's up?" or "fuck you, son of a donkey!" (that last one was a rough translation from the literal 'honk.' The two languages don't translate exactly, you know.) Therefore, people are honking continuously, and strangely, honking ceases to bother you after a while.

Anyways, on this particular drive I saw none of this, as I passed out in the car and didn't wake up until we were in the small town (I forget the name) where we were to begin the rafting trip. We suited up, found our guide, and started down the 500 or so steps into the rainforest basin where our rafts were waiting. (The picture on my pictures page is during a pause in that walk down).

The rapids were only class 2 and 3, so it was pretty mild, but still fun as all get-up. A two hour ride under gigantic, several-hundred foot waterfalls, through the sort of rainforest I always imagined there would be in 'tropical' places, with a long pause to play in the biggest waterfall and really, just to yell a lot and have mud in between my toes. They fed us a Balinese buffet on the side of the river at the end of the ride, which was served on wooden plates covered with huge leaves. No waste! whoop!

Three hour drive back led to even longer naps. I woke up and didn't know where everybody was, so I went to the massage area of the hotel, and got an hour long massage with some sort of crazy milk bath and stuff (I am still a man) for 12 dollars. I became addicted (as well as in love with my massuse) and got four more hour long massages during the rest of my time in Bali. The 12 dollar one was the most expensive one I ever had, too.

The bath had me feeling all spiritual (the stone tub was in this room filled with stone idols and little fountains and ferns and stuff) so I meditated for a while (not for an hour though...crazy Wyan) and then we went out to dinner again (this time I spent a whopping 6 dollars for several courses...haha awesome).
We made a half-ass attempt to get wasted but were too tired, and hit the sack again.

After beating the poor sack up, we crashed.

After crashing into things, we went to bed.



The travel package that we had purchased in Saipan got us three nights in a nice hotel in Bali, and now our three days were up. We needed a place to stay. The Guam Clumate girls were staying some 'really cheap place' elsewhere in Kuta that sounded good (ie cheap) and so we packed in a hurry, grabbed a cab that kept getting lost in the chaos of Kuta, and eventually found its way to the hotel where the girls were staying.

At checkin, we found out that the room was going to cost us 25,000 rupies each (for two rooms, actually), which is around $2.50. The girls, however, had already bailed for the day with Wyan, which sucked, 'cause now we didn't have any transportation.

We grabbed our own cab an hour and a half north to Ubud, a sort of cultural center of Bali, where we spent four hours eating at restaruants and cafes, shopping for knicknacks and stuff, and getting more messages. This time, my massage was outside, in a sheltered stone courtyard, and halfway through, it started pouring. It was pretty cool. Afterwards, I got tea with the massuse until the rain subsided, then I found John and we watched monkies run around and have sex with each other until we heard a honk and Wyan arrived. Amanda and Mandy wandered up and then we piled into the car. Wyan wanted to 'take us somewhere.' So we went.

This temple (another Hindu temple) was also located at the beach. I was sort of reminded of some of the coastline near big sur and Santa Cruz, but with more spectacular rock formations rising out of the water like twenty feet out. One of these rock formations had a small temple built into it. There were huge crowds here (I guess this temple is really famous...I wish I could remember what it was called), which detracted a little (as it always does), but it was still pretty cool. We watched the sun set behind the temple and a surfer who was riding the huge waves around the temple (which was probably really, really dangerous. Attention-seeker), John and Mandy had their picture taken with a huge snake, and then we went home.

It was during the car ride home that I started feeling a flu come on. I decided that I wasn't going to let anything hold me back on my vacation, so had Wyan help me buy the Indonesian equivalent of Theraflu. We got back to the hotel, started drinking again, got dressed to go out, I laid down on my bed, saw John lay down on his, and just...rested...my...eyes...for...a...second.


John and I both woke up, completely dressed to go out, and looked at each other in suprise. It was morning. I started laughing. John said 'fuck.' Mandy then came in, dressed to go out, too. "You guys, we're so lame!" Mandy yelled, then sat down heavily on the bed.

We got up, headed down to breakfast, found the Bali girls (it was their last day there) and then Wyan showed up. He 'wanted to take us somewhere,' so I put on my swimsuit and got in the car, blindly.

It ended up being another beautiful beach, right next to the Bali club med. We decided that we were all going to apply to Club Med (we figured were were all very, very qualified from being Clubmates) and took a hike through the Med facilities, until we finally reached the man who who had the authority to tell us that they weren't hiring, and if we wanted a club med job, that we had to contact club med international, see our website, blah blah blah so we went to the beach, played on a Flying Fish (speedboats pull this raft with wings at high speeds until it takes off and flies. Ended up costing us 9 dollars each, but I messed my hands up on it, so it wasn't that worth it.)

We drank beers at a small cafe on the beach until Wyan arrived, then we went back to Kuta for the afternoon. A long walk around town ended us up at Vicks,' a small hippy bar that sells...magic shakes.


John and I split one, mandy had her own, and then we went running through the markets for a while. John decided to take a nap, and so Mandy and I went back to Vicks,' drank...ummm...another magic shake, then headed for the beach (almost getting lost on the way). We sat at the beach and smoked cigarettes and looked at the stars for a while, and then suddenly mandy was taking her pants off and sitting right where the sand was covered with the ebbing tide around half the time. I laughed, took my pants off, and sat next to her. We regarded this scene for a while in silence. The wave would go out, it would be calm for a while, then it would come back in, sometimes with great force, and knock us over. We ended up playing in the waves for a while, and then it started raining. Really, really hard.

For a while, I wasn't sure that I liked it. Then I found that I was turning slow circles, arms outstretched and face looking at the sky, and that I had been doing so for a long time.

I decided after a while that I was going to check on our things, and so headed back to where our now very complete pile of clothes was sitting in a heap and being rained on. It was now very, very dark. I reached for my black shirt, and felt FUR AIEEEEEE WHAT THE HELL?

It was a dog.

A little black dog had curled up on top of my shirt and gone to sleep while Mandy and I were frolicking in the ocean. It lept up and barked at me. Keep in mind that I'm ON MUSROOMS OH MY GOD. I slowly backed up, stood uncertantly on the beach for a bit, and then lost my mind. It came back a little time later, and I ran back to the ocean, where Mandy was still very much in mid-frolic. We laughed about it and played for a little bit longer, then came back out sit for a while.

It was at this point that a very drunk local guy came wandering over and asked if we wanted to join his party a little ways down the beach.

You see, when I trip, I fear 'others,' so I was against it, and politely refused him for a few minutes until he left. However, I could tell that Mandy wanted to go, and I was starting to feel a little better about it, so we headed over to their bonfire.

It was a bunch of local boys, our age, surfer types with dreadlocks and no shirts, playing guitars and bongos, smoking and drinking Arak, the local liquor. One had black hair spilling out the brim of a black top hat.

There was also a guy and a girl from Denmark (blonde, naturally), and a cool guy from Mexico. The guy started playing a Java reggae song called 'Coconut Trees' that we are now all obsessed with, but are unable to find a recording anywhere...but anyways everyone was singing and dancing and playing when there was a loud CRACK and it started POURING again. Hooting and hollering, drummers scooped up their drums, guitars were grabbed, and everyone made a beeline for the lifeguard tower that they had been using as shelter. We made plans to meet up with them later and ran for our hostel, and promptly got lost on the streets of Kuta.

It was only for a moment, though, as we found our neighborhood and ran laughing through the streets, soaked to the bone and not caring. The shops and bars that lined the street were filled with people trying to stay out of the storm, who would laugh and call when we ran by.

The owner of a shop called out to us to come take a look at his wares, but Mandy cheerfully responded,

"No thanks, we're a little wet."

A little wet?

This made me burst out laughing, and we laughed all the way to the hostel.

At the hostel, we met up with the Guam Clubmate girls, who were on their way to the airport. We hung out with them for a while, gave them our wishes that they would miss their flight and come back to hang out with us, and then said goodby.

At this point, my theraflu was wearing off, and I was feeling pretty sick, so I decided not to hit the bars, but John, Amanda, and Mandy went out bar-hopping while I crashed.

John stumbled into the room at 5am and fell into bed.

We were supposed to get up to catch our ride to go scuba diving at 7am.


I woke up at 7 and woke John up. John promptly gave me a look more full of hate than any I have been the recipiant of in quite some time.

Finally he was roused, and went next door to wake the girls.

He came back. They weren't coming.

Amanda wanted to stay the next few days to hang out with the cool Bali locals. Mandy was just too hung over to get out of bed. We split up for the next few days. They went surfing, did a lot of shopping, and hung out with the local boys in reggae bars and clubs.

John and I threw ourselves into Wyan's van and passed out for the 4 hour drive to Bali's northwestern edge, where we did our first day of scuba diving.

Some 50 years ago, a US ship sunk right off the shore of Bali, and is now a popular dive site for scuba divers for obvious reasons: It kicks ass.

It's huge, running hundreds and hundreds of feet from end to end, and covered with coral. You can be looking at a bunch of brilliantly yellow and red fish, swimming around a beautiful piece of purple coral, then realize that you're looking at the steering wheel of the ship.

We spent our first dive circling the outside of the ship. At one point, our Dive Master pointed to the shadows underneath the front of the ship, and we looked and saw a barracuda, which then swam close to us and bared it's insanely sharp teeth at us. (A barracuda is the one who killed Nemo's parents, and now he was going to kill me.) It was scary enough, and it was alone. I've heard they travel in packs of several dozen. damn.

We surfaced and ate lunch, then went back down and this time swam through the ship, which was even cooler, although pretty errie.

After Diving, Wyan flung us back into his van and we drove a few hours east to a small beach town, where John and I got a cool little hotel room for another 50,000 rupies (around three bucks) a night. Wyan, John and I ate dinner at a beachside restaraunt, then Wyan bailed to spend the night at his wife's family's house, and we wandered around for a bit and then crashed, really, really early (around 8pm).


Our Dive Master woke us up at 545am and we walked out to the beach and hopped into his brother's small fishing boat, and went our on the mirror-image still water and watched the sunrise and the dolphins jump, (I think I have a picture of this on my photobucket page). Around 730 we came back in, then took a ride a few more hours west then took a boat ride out to a tiny island with the island of Java towering behind it.

The tiny island, of course, had a Hindu temple on it. We didn't go on the island, but dove right off the boat and explored the coral around the base of the island.

We were diving with a crazy (is there any other kind?) Austrailian couple who claimed to be really experienced divers. The woman, however, promptly took off like almost straight down, and John and I, distracted by all the fish around us, followed her to a depth of 35 meters, which is waaaaaay too deep for a couple of guys on their 8th dive ever.

The diver master came down and got us, though, and all was well. We came up and had lunch on a pier jutting out from the base of the hindu temple, and watched people making their way to some ceremony pile out of tiny boats and across the pier to the temple above. A man's singing voice filtered down through the trees and we ate fried rice and sunburned, then went out and dove again.

It rained on the boat ride back, and we huddled under the wooden roof until we reached the safety of Wyan's van.

I tried to stay awake on the 4 hour van ride back to see the amazing segmented mountain rice paddies all along the road, but only managed to do this around half the time.

We rolled into Kuta, caught up with the girls, got dressed, and ate Dinner at the bar where two our our new local friends were playing. After this bar we flew from bar to bar for the rest of the night, stopping in at a Ultimate Frisbee party, and several other clubs in a night that resulted in a wasted Robin stumbling home in a small rainstorm and passing on on the grimy bathroom floor.


This day was relatively laid back. We ate in restaraunts and cafes, got one last massage, did a little more shopping, met up with Wyan and then went to the airport.

We flew to Guam, from Guam to Rota, then Rota, and now we're back home in Saipan.



Sunday, April 23, 2006

Bali: Monday

Bali: Mondy


I woke up late, groggy, and opened my back door to discover that the balcony to my room had stairs right down into the pool, as did every room. I headed to the other room and found John, the girls, and Lauren and Jen hanging out. Lauren and Jen had been put in touch with a local named Wyan who, for 20 bucks total a day, would be your personal driver, tour guide, and friend. He was awesome.

I spent a lot of time riding shotgun next to Wyan, driving through rainforests or through fields of rice paddys, talking to Wyan about his religion (Hindu), Politics (not going too well for the Hindus. Bali is 98

Percent Hindu, but Bali is a part of Indonesia, which is governed by Muslims.), Meditation (he can blank his mind for an hour), and food (dude loves rice more than anyone I've ever met).

But anyways, on this particular day he thought for a second, then said "I'm going to take you to Dreamland." A half-hour drive took us to the most beautiful beach that I've ever been to, hands down. The water looked laughably like generic postcard tropical water, the sand was white, it was all backed by a wall of rainforest, with pockets of houses and huts poking out all along the ridge.

We tossed our stuff down and ran gleefully for the water, swam out to the waves, realized that they were GIGANTIC, tried to body surf one, caught the wave and then had it land on top of us, and then retreated somewhat less gleefully than we had charged the wave. We were gonna rent some surfboards and surf, but the waves were too big and we feared them.

We ended up drinking at the Beach bar for around a dollar a beer, then bailed.

We headed back to Kuta, the capitol of Bali, to do some shopping (Shopping in Bali can be very, very cheap if you know how to bargain well...shirts, bags, etc for 2-6 bucks, etc) then Wyan 'wanted to show us something,' and so we just got in his car and he took us to a Hindu temple clinging to the lip of a cliff a couple of hundred feet above the ocean. It was pretty kickass. We spent a while exploring the temple and feeding the monkies pieces of pineapple, then Wyan 'wanted to show us something,' so we went to another part of the temple and watched a Kecak Dance.

A Kecak dance is a Hindu legend acted out in dance, driven by a chorus of around 70 barechested, beatboxing, shouting, chanting, singing, murmuring badass guys ranging in age from 20 to 65. They provide all the music with their voices, and it was heaven for an accapella music nerd like me. Fucking amazing, and the sun setting into the ocean behind it all was pretty cool , too. Near the end of the dance they set all these piles of brush on fire, and the demon-king character ran around and kicked them (barefoot!) into the air. I've got some amazing pictures that Amanda took of all this that I'll put up at some point on my photo page:


I've got some Bali stuff up already, but I'm working on more.

Anyways, we then headed back to Kuta.

The Guam girls were pretty exhausted, so they headed to bed. On their way out, we found out that they were tired from being out at the bars until 6 am. They said that a 'magic drink' that they had tried at some bar had something to do with this. John and I decided that we needed to try said magic drink, and so after our amazing, 4 dollar dinner, we went to the bar that they had found it.

John wandered up to the dude, and goes,

"Ummm....do you have....magic shakes?"
"Er....do you have...mushroom drink?"
"Oh yeah. Come in!"


When you arrive in Bali, one of the first things you see in the Airport is a huge sign that states: Bringing drugs into Bali carries the DEATH PENALTY.

As a result, I was skeptical that this dude was really going to give us a drink with magic mushrooms in it. I was sure that it would just be some sort of tourist trap drink with a lot of alcohol that would convince you that hey, something's wierd! I must be on mushrooms oooooh!

So he brought us both a shake for 4 bucks each. We downed them, playing pool, and then Mandy wandered in (amanda had gone home to sleep). John and I ordered another round of these 'mushroom' drinks. Haha yeah right are these really mushroom shakes. We finished playing pool and decided to find this reggae bar that the girls had been talking about with a killer live band and good ambiance.

We went up to the bartender of Venom (the bar with the 'magic' shakes) and said goodnight. And then he did something that we would later shake our fists at and yell, "He knew!"

He shook our hands, looked us in the eye, smiled in a knowing way, and said, "you guys have a good night."

At the time, I didn't think anything of it. We started walking down the street when suddenly I felt a little tug. Holy shit. Those really were mushrooms. And a whole lot of them. Uh-oh. We have to get off the street. Now.

The problem was, we didn't exactly know where this reggae bar was. the street was dark, crowded, and filled with seedy-looking dudes who would pop out of the dark and ask if we wanted to buy pot. Everything was looking sort of grim when suddenly we could hear some fantastic Marley song. There was bar!

The bar was lit with all sorts of cool lights, and the best reggae band I've ever seen played all night long. I know because we were there all night long. They played Marley, hits from Java and South America, and Sublime! Bah-Bah!

We, too were up until 6 am.

Okay, so I'm writing too much. I just spent two hours covering my first day and a half in Bali, and now I'm out of internet time. Again. Okay, next time I'm here, I'll do the rest of the days real fast and just get 'er done. dang!

Bali: Part One


Whew. So much to say and no way to start out
...well, that's a start.

I'd also like to start this out by apologising for the last blog, specifically to Elliott, for it's complete lack of anything about Bali. I really, really did mean to spend my two hours of prepaid internet cafe time writing about Bali, but then ended up writing a fantasy conversation with a dude that I don't even like that much for most of the time I had to spend at the internet.

But here's the Bali scoop!

I'll rock this chronologically.

(note: I reserve the right to write that I'm going to 'rock' things at any point that I'm listening to Jurassic 5. Thank you. That will be all)

...so I'm driving back from the hospital, gingerly sitting in the front seat of John's car, when I notice that there is a cop on a motorcycle behind me and one lane over (of the two possible lanes...The widest road Saipan has).

I immediately remember that this car has no insurance, no glass on the back window, hasn't been registered since 2002, and no emergency brake, amoung other problems. However, it's the registration that worries me.

I realize that I'm worrying needlessly. Cops in Saipan are reputadedly easy-going to a fault. I've heard of people being pulled over, but never ever given a ticket for anything.

I promptly got a ticket.

He was like "Ummm...sir, are you aware that this car hasn't been registered...in four years?" I pretended to be amazed but probably failed admirably. I mean, look at this car, sir. Of course it hasn't been registered in four years. It was, however, amazingly bad timing for me to be pulled over. This car has been evading arrest for four years, and I get pulled over, 5 minutes from PIC, with only 15 left minutes to pack for a week in Bali?

This is so like me, I thought.

I sighed and waited and the cop finally finished and gave me a ticket for just no registration (which was only 25 bucks) instead of the 300 dollar "no insurance" ticket that he "should have given me."

In retrospect, he was pretty cool. I mean, I got pulled over twice in three days the very week my registration expired in San Diego, and the cops were all dicks there.

But anyways I flew home, grabbed a single backpack (and a small one...this comes into play later) and stuffed it with a few shirts, one sweatshirt, one pair of jeans, one pair of shorts, some running shoes, a book, my ipod, my passport and my wallet.

I ran out the door as John, Amanda, Mandy, and the driver waitied in the car for me. I stopped. I had no idea where my ticket was.

After gutting my room, I miraculously found the ticket buried in a pile of random papers in my desk (in under three minutes! I rule!) and jumped into the car. We're off.

We flew to Guam for a few hour layover and ran into the Saipan ultimate frisbee team (which in another life where I have more time I play for), which was en route to a tournament in Bali. They (captained by Amanda's boyfriend, Bruce) bought us beers and had a fairly merry time in the Airport.
While we were waiting in line for the security checkpoint, Amanda tapped my arm and pointed at a sign my the U.S. Homeland Security Department that declared that the airport in Bali did NOT meet U.S. Security measures.

"Haha," I said, pretending not to care, and we got on the plane.

The flight from Guam to Bali was...er...uncomfortable, due to the...erm...Boil situation.

that's all I'm going to say about that.

We arrived in Bali around 9PM on Sunday the 9th.

Bali kicks ass. The bus and club bombings that happened in 2002 and 2005, respectively, have contributed HEAVILY to the complete downfall of the tourism industry. Austrailian, American and European tourism has slowed to a complete crawl, and while this was cool for us, this is not good for Bali.

As a result, I'm going to say the locals have never ever treated me ANYWHERE as nicely as the Bali locals did. Sure, most of them were trying to sell me things, but even those who weren't were friendly and helpful, everywhere we went. A few towns we drove through even had a little pack of kids that would run along the side of the car, smiling and waving. I loved the Bali locals.

We were picked up at the airport by our hotel (we had pre-paid for 3 nights at a pretty nice hotel, then were on our own for the rest of the week). A few clubmates from Guam were also on island (Lauren and Jen) and there was a message from them at our hotel that they wanted to go out with us later.

We just crashed instead.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Bali: The Prolouge

So I went to Bali last week.

Hmmm, before I get too far into this story, I should start out by talking about The B.O.M.B.

Hmmmm, maybe before I get too far into that, I should talk about THE EAR.

Okay, well start with THE EAR, but Ill keep it short, this one's not too interesting.

In January I got an ear infection. Swimmer's Ear. Those of you who have been swimmers definitely know what this is; for all you others, its a huge fucking painful ear infection that you get from having water in yer ears too much. Bacteria have a little fiesta in yer ear canal, and it's a bummer. Anyways, I got one of these in January, went to the Doctor, got eardrops, and figured that was that.

But this is Saipan, and these are no ordinary Bacteria.

I dont know if it's because it's so humid here, or maybe because of the crazy tropical bacteria in general, or maybe the Spam that everybody eats all the time, but Bacteria here don't fuck around.

To cut the story short, I had the infection for two and a half months. I was on all sorts of antibiotics and nothing seemed to work. Around three weeks ago, I got an appointment to see the ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) specialist at the hospital. I was really anxious to see this dude, as I was going to Bali in two weeks, and playing in water was definitely on my agenda for Bali. I had to go to Human Resources to get a ride to the hospital, and while I was sitting in the waiting area, this guy Cole came in.

Cole: "What's up, Robin?"

Robin: "What?"


Robin: "Ear infection. Can't hear too well."

Cole: "Oh man, that sucks."

Robin: "Yeah, Ive had it for like two months."

Cole: " Dude, there was this Clubmate who worked here a few years ago and had an ear infection for a few months. Dude was a dumbass and just thought he could ride it out and just put some alcohol in there every now and then, and it just got worse and worse. When he finally went in to the Doctor, and they took a look in his ear, there were like worms in there like eating at the inside of his ear."

Robin: (horrified silence).

Cole: "Alright, see you later, man."

Robin: "...gasp...see you Cole."

Cole: "Oh, one more thing, man."

Robin: "Yeah?"

Cole: "Was it really necessary to put this whole conversation in quotes like this? I mean, couldn't the message have been conveyed by just writing that I mentioned the worms thing?"

Robin "Hey man, don't ask me."

Cole: "But aren't you writing this right now?"

Robin: "Nah, that's me in a few weeks. Not me now."

Cole: "Well, I'm talking to the 'you' of right now, but this is being written by the 'you' of a few weeks from now."

Robin: "Yeah. Why don't you ask him?"

Cole: "Okay. Hey Robin from the Future?"

...Okay, my characters are talking to me. Didn't see that one coming.

Cole: "Robin?"

Ummmdo I like write back? Put myself in quotes?

Cole: "Nah, man, we can hear you fine."

...Oh...Ummm okay. What's up, Cole?

Cole: "Isn't this whole section kind of unnecessary? Like, wouldn't one sentence like 'so this guy Cole came in and told me a scary story about worms in some dudes' ear 'have been enough? I mean, aren't you trying to write a blog about Bali?"

Uh...yeah...I guess. I get easily sidetracked.

Cole: "No kidding, right Robin from the Present?"

Robin: "What?"


Robin: "Sorry. Ear infection. Can't hear too well...right about what?"

Cole: "I was just talking about how Robin from the Future gets easily distracted."

Robin: "Oh. I didnt hear that part. I was playing with this string I found here."

Cole: "...Oh, that was lame."

Robin: "What?"


Robin: "I heard you the first time, man. I mean, what was lame?"

Cole: "Robin from the Future set that whole part up so that you'd be playing with the string while I was talking to you, you know, cause he gets easily distracted, which means you do, too, as you're just him from two weeks prior."

Robin: "Are you saying you don't think this piece of string is pretty sweet?"

Cole: "Well, okay. That's some sweet string...hmmm....hey....hey Robin from the Future?"


Cole: "Could we have some laser guns or something?"

Ummm...I guess...but this isn't supposed to be a fictional blog.

Cole: "Oh, yeah, like it's stayed completely nonfiction. We're talking to a version of yourself from the FUTURE."


Robin: "Hey, my string just turned into a laser gun!"

Cole: "Hahaha! The world is our oyster!"

Robin: "Haha!"

Anyways, that's about what happened.

I went to the ENT, who was some heavily accented dude from Somewhere in Europe. He was totally proficient, though, and sucked all sorts of gross stuff out of my ear with a vacuum. He told me that my ear hadn't been infected for a long time, it was just totally irritated at me for all the antibiotics that I'd been unnecessarily putting in it for so long. God damn it but hey my ear is better I'm finally healthy again! Hooray! What's...what's that...on my butt?

The B.O.MB., otherwise known as Boils On My Butt.

I kid you not, the SAME DAY that I got rid of the pain in my ear, I grew a huge boil on my butt cheek. For the uninitiated, a boil is essentially a really, really bit zit. Let's just say in the ballpark of 4-6 times bigger than a zit. And I didnt just have one. Oh no. I had THREE.

Before we go any further with all of this, let me make one thing clear: I did not get the BOMB because I dont clean my butt cheeks. I shower every day, okay?! OKAY!?


Anyways, the same merry band of Bacteria from my ear, bummed that the party had ended in my ear, made their merry little way down to my butt. The boils got bigger every day, and after four days, I was unable to sit without huge, fantastic amounts of pain, which was problematic, BECAUSE I'M A LIFEGUARD.

It was now only a few days before I was to fly to Bali, and I knew one thing: I needed to get these boils taken care of. Now.

On Friday, April 7, I went back to my friends at the Marianas Medical Clinic (not the ENT). I walked in, and the doctor happened to be standing in the waiting room. She saw me walk in and sighed. "Your ears' still not better," she said in a flat tone. She's also from Somewhere in Europe. I think France, judging from her accent and general disdain of everything.

"No, I said, It's...umm...something else.
"Oh." She said, "What's that?"
The whole waiting room full of people looked at me expectantly. I hesitated.
"It's...ummm...well...it's...I've got a...cough...boilonmybutt."
"I've got a boil on my butt."

She laughed and took me into a back room. After showing her the boil, she told me to go into the 'procedure room,' and then left me there, because she needed 'help with this one.'

I spent a while wondering what that meant, then the doctor came back in, pulling on rubber gloves, followed by a Physicians Assistant, who was also pulling on gloves.

"Allright, lie down on your stomach," she said.

They closed the door, and I'm going to leave you guys out there, too.

Let's just say I can now cross off 'Have four hands in my butt cheeks at once' off my 'Things to Do Before I Die' List.

As we were walking out, she gave me a prescription for some (sigh) more antibiotics, and told me that she needed to see me on Monday, so she could pop 'em again. I told her that this wouldn't be possible, as I was leaving for Bali on Sunday the 9th. She considered this for a second, then goes,

Well, do you have a girlfriend?

(where was she going with this? No...no it couldn't be...I said No)

Well, do you have any friends who you are close enough with that they could


Needless to say, I told her that I was going to take my chances, and waddled back to work.

Sunday finally rolled around. We (my friends Amanda and Mandy, and my roommate John) worked a half-day, and then got off at noon. Our flight was at two thirty, but I needed to zip over to the hospital and get my 'butt drugs.'

(and now, a monent of silence for my use of the term, 'butt drugs.')

Anyways, we were getting a ride to the airport at one-fifteen.

I borrowed John's old beat-up van (The one I'm driving in the picture on my picture page) and drove to the only pharmacy open on Sundays: The hospital. The drive took me twenty minutes. It was Twelve Thirty. I waited in the slowest line POSSIBLE behind a lady WHO HAD FORGOTTEN HER PERSCRIPTION AND WAS STILL SOMEHOW SURE THAT SHE COULD STILL GET HER DRUGS MY GOD LADY IF YOU DONT GET OUT OF MY WAY I'LL REALLY GIVE YOU A REASON TO NEED DRUGS OH SORRY AM I HOSTILE I'M LATE FOR A FLIGHT AND OH YEAH HAVE THREE BOILS ON MY ASS!

But I just waited and finally got my drugs and got out of there at eleven fifty. I had twenty-five minutes to get back, pack (I had only just started packing) and then jump on the ride to the airport. The drive was going well enough...until I saw the lights flashing in my rearview mirror.