A visit to the Mengwi Royal Temple

So on a dreary afternoon, we ventured to the Mengwi Royal Temple, also known as the Taman Ayun Temple in Bali, Indonesia. Other than being a huge and well landscaped complex, this temple complex hosts the altar reserved for the royalty of Mengwi. Some structures looked old but not ancient, while some looked quite modern, all looked well maintained.

Our driver dropped us off at the entrance to the temple and right away you can see the splendor of it all, not grandiose but rather a large, clean, minimalist complex with sparsely placed structures surrounded by plenty of space with a very well maintained landscape. At the ticket both we paid a nominal entrance fee and proceeded in. Our driver had mentioned that some temples require the usage of a sarong if your pants/skirt/shorts are above the knees some do not. This one did and provided the sarong for my daughters who were wearing shorts (I was informed by my older daughter that hers was a ‘skort’ not a shorts or skirt. I told her, “too bad, you still have to wear it”). What caught me by surprise is when my kids pointed out a sign that said something to the effect of “no entry if you’re on your menstrual cycle.” As if they’d check, I’d wondered as we walked away. Anyways, something to note, I can understand and respect the rule, just taken aback by the prominent sign I guess. I do recall some Buddhist temples having this rule as well. Something to be mindful of, I suppose, if you’re a believer and don’t want “bad karma”.

As we made our way in we had a toilet break and in the area was a snack shop and a rather large cock fighting ‘arena’. I’ve never seen one so legit looking but didn’t think it was still being used to fight roosters as they had placed mannequins inside the fighting area so you’d know exactly what this space is for. My hopes of it being non functional other than for offering a glimpse of historic cultural practices were kinda dashed when I saw a big cage with rooster in it. I couldn’t see everything as it was in an off limits to the public, tucked away in the back area enclosed by a tall bamboo fence. I supposed I shouldn’t have been surprised, as cock fighting is a part of many South East Asian cultures and this being the royal temple, it should be ‘fit for a king’, right?

Continuing on we came up to a big wall that had an elaborate entry point. I’m guessing this is the entry to the area where people go to pray, place offerings etc. I didn’t think it would be gated and locked, but it was. So to see this “main” section, you have to take the inclined path that leads around this wall. Not knowing what to expect, I still didn’t expect what we saw. Basically the front wall with the gate is the short side of one end of a rectangle wall structure. Directly behind these walls is a narrow moat, and within the moat is where all the altars, statues, trees and other things are. If I had to guess, this inner area is about the size of an ice hockey rink. The stone structures and carvings looked weathered and old but well maintained giving them a dated but not ancient look. At the back there’s an elevated area to get a better look. Here’s a couple shots:

Back behind the this main temple area is a vast park with a path that goes in and around it, with gazebo placed here and there. We didn’t have the time to walk the whole park nor did the weather allow us to (it started to rain at this point) so we headed towards some pavilions for some cover.

As we made our way to the exit/entrance we stopped to get some drinks at the gift shop. It was while looking around drinking water that I notice the rooster cage but also stone steps up to a gate. I decided to go check it out. the gate at the top of the steps was locked but you can see into the area quite easily. Maybe this is the ‘royal altars’?

Here’s a few images taken in around the Mengwi Temple complex:

Consider following me for updates and to find not only my other travel bloopers, blunders and shenanigans but also photography related news/reviews and the occasional contest entry.

All the photos (unless otherwise noted in the post) were taken by me and are available for sale. If you’re interested in buying an image or three, 😃 please don’t hesitate to contact me for more details. Thanks in advance!

Comments & Critiques are always welcome, as are upvotes and resteems.

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Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/20

COME CHECK OUT THESE FREE ONLINE CLASSES !
For all you creatives, out there if you haven’t heard of Creative Live, you may be missing out. I always browse their site for anything to do with photography (including the legal and business aspects as well as the heavier side of image editing) and sign up for whatever I find interesting. I’ve watched many free tutorials and classes and have made a few purchases as well after watching the free live stream. I’m of the opinion that Creative Live is a very valuable resource even if you only watch the free classes!The above image was something I cooked up in Photoshop after being inspired from watching a free class on Creative Live. Check Out CreativeLive’s Free On-Air Classes.

I’ve included classes in other genre’s just in case anyone is interested in them and If you really haven’t heard about Creative Live, here’s their sales pitch:

Start learning for free today with the amazing selection of live and on air classes from Creative Live. You will learn creative skills from the world’s top experts – Pulitzer Prize, Grammy, Oscar Winners, and New York Times best selling authors, thought leaders, and legendary entrepreneurs. With over 1,500 curated classes in Photography & Video, Money & Life, Craft & Maker, Art & Design, and Music & Audio, there is something for everyone. Students can watch on-air broadcasts for free or buy a class and own the content for life.

Plus, you can get your daily creative fix on the iOS app with 1 free lesson of you choice , each and every day!

Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/20

Class Name: Beyond Etsy
Text Link: Beyond Etsy Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/20/2019
End Date: 01/21/2019
RSVP Date: 01/20/2019

Class Name: The Power of Happiness
Text Link: The Power of Happiness Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/21/2019
End Date: 01/22/2019
RSVP Date: 01/21/2019

Class Name: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Fast Start
Text Link: Canon=C2=AE EOS 5D Mark IV Fast Start Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/22/2019
End Date: 01/23/2019
RSVP Date: 01/22/2019

Class Name: Studio Pass with Steve Evetts and Ben Weinman
Text Link: Studio Pass with Steve Evetts and Ben Weinman Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/23/2019
End Date: 01/24/2019
RSVP Date: 01/23/2019

Class Name: Unstoppable: Inner Power For Entrepreneurs
Text Link: Unstoppable: Inner Power For Entrepreneurs Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/24/2019
End Date: 01/25/2019
RSVP Date: 01/24/2019

Class Name: Function-Driven Interior Design
Text Link: Function-Driven Interior Design Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/25/2019
End Date: 01/26/2019
RSVP Date: 01/25/2019

Happy Learning, y’all ! ! !

FULL DISCLOSURE: Please note that the course/class links have my affiliate code in them and should you choose to purchase a class, I may get a referral fee. The links only direct you to the page where you can watch the course FOR FREE on the stated date(s).

Consider following me for updates and to find not only my other travel bloopers, blunders and shenanigans but also photography related news/reviews and the occasional contest entry.

All the photos (unless otherwise noted in the post) were taken by me and are available for sale. If you’re interested in buying an image or three, 😃 please don’t hesitate to contact me for more details. Thanks in advance!

Comments & Critiques are always welcome, as are upvotes and resteems.

Thanks for viewing and best wishes!

PS. If you want to check out my other ‘works’, you can find them here:

Portfolio
Blog
Fine Art

A couple hours at the Ceking Rice Terrace

We visited the Ceking Rice Terrace in Bali, Indonesia on our second day in Bali. Now I have to admit, I wasn’t that enthusiastic about going to a rice paddy farm. I mean, not having been to one before, how interesting could it be, right? Boy, am I happy to be wrong!

On the drive in, I began to see the beauty. The rice terrace was in sort of a large ravine, below street level. The golden rice plants really stood out from the surrounding greenery. As we neared the ‘tourist’ area, our driver rolled down the window and spoke with the ticket agent and told us the price, I wasn’t really paying attention, too busy looking for spots to take some photos but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t unreasonable (no one complained about it, haha). This area is just a long stretch of road with souvenir shops and eateries on both sides of the street. To get to the rice fields you had to find the staircase down and fortunately for us, our driver dropped us right in front of it. There was a small sign indicating the entrance but it could easily be missed because if you look down over the railing (in between the shop houses), you’ll just see more shops or eateries. Some have zig zagging paths downwards seemingly into the terrace but they could very easily lead you somewhere like a short rice paddy field or a plank suspended by two tall palm trees (that you can pay to swing on) or a hidden “coffee shop”. Oh, some have a “selfie spot” too so keep an eye out for those as well (they might ‘require’ a donation to use though).

It was starting to drizzle so we went into the shops to look at stuff. There were a lot of local arts and crafts on display as well as the usual touristy souvenirs. Our driver, again, indicated that this area is cheaper than in town and that we should bargain for better pricing. This area’s terraces were more green than gold so I decided to walk a couple blocks back the way we came in to take photos of the golden rice fields, as my family went shopping. At the check point, where we paid the entrance fee, is where the sidewalk ended so I was walking on the street for a bit. Not an issue as the drivers did very well to avoid hitting me. I noticed there were people who looked like tourists in these rice fields so there was an entrance somewhere but unsure of the weather and not wanting to go shot less,  I decided not to take any time to find it. I found a spot along the street, in a building under construction and began taking pictures (I asked the workers in there for permission first, of course). I got some shots I was happy with so i made my way back. At the check point, I just showed my ticket to the ‘guard’ who nodded and I walked back to meet my family. Here’s some shots:

The drizzling had stopped a bit earlier, so down we went zig zagging down the path until it started to get muddy and that pretty much ended our journey into the rice fields. I mean I could have kept going and take photos of other tourists, but i don’t find that fun. So we went to hang out at one of the coffee shops, we picked one that wasn’t crowded and they were more than happy to let me set up for some family shots, even helping me move a table and some chairs! My younger daughter started making a small fuss near the entrance while my older daughter was like “aww cooool!” so I walked over to check it out and saw this:

It may not look big in the photo but it was big enough that when I saw it, I said it was fake. The relief on my younger kid’s face didn’t last too long as the waitress started laughing and said it was real and that there were a lot below in the rice fields. That prompted my older daughter to want to find some but was reminded by my wife about her pretty white sandals. Darn it. So we sat back down and my kids started showing me the loot that they had scored and the “cool” shop that they have to go back to because they saw some other loot that they’ve decided that they were going back to buy.  I guess I should find comfort in the thought that they at least take the time to think about their purchases, sigh. Plus it all goes back to the local artists so it’s great!

Oh, before I forget, after going down the first flight of steps to the shops just below street level, then a short zig zag down a path to the actual start of the path into the rice terraces, there is a person sitting behind a makeshift table collecting a donation based entrance fee.  According to our driver, the rice farmers are paid by the shop keepers on the street to keep the farms going so this “by donation” entrance fee probably goes directly to the farmers. Overall, I had a good time at the Ceking Rice Terrace and am glad that I got to experience it. Sitting in a coffee shop with an ice cold local beer over looking the rice terrace offers a certain tranquility that you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere else. Well worth the trip, in our opinions! Here’s some shots from the coffee shop:

Consider following me for updates and to find not only my other travel bloopers, blunders and shenanigans but also photography related news/reviews and the occasional contest entry.

All the photos (unless otherwise noted in the post) were taken by me and are available for sale. If you’re interested in buying an image or three, 😃 please don’t hesitate to contact me for more details. Thanks in advance!

Comments & Critiques are always welcome, as are upvotes and resteems.

Thanks for viewing and best wishes!

PS. If you want to check out my other ‘works’, you can find them here:

Portfolio
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Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/13

COME CHECK OUT THESE FREE CLASSES !


For all you creatives, out there if you haven’t heard of Creative Live, you may be missing out. I always browse their site for anything to do with photography (including the legal and business aspects as well as the heavier side of image editing) and sign up for whatever I find interesting. I’ve watched many free tutorials and classes and have made a few purchases as well after watching the free live stream. I’m of the opinion that Creative Live is a very valuable resource even if you only watch the free classes!The above image was something I cooked up in Photoshop after being inspired from watching a free class on Creative Live. Check Out CreativeLive’s Free On-Air Classes.

I’ve included classes in other genre’s just in case anyone is interested in them and If you really haven’t heard about Creative Live, here’s their sales pitch:

Start learning for free today with the amazing selection of live and on air classes from Creative Live. You will learn creative skills from the world’s top experts – Pulitzer Prize, Grammy, Oscar Winners, and New York Times best selling authors, thought leaders, and legendary entrepreneurs. With over 1,500 curated classes in Photography & Video, Money & Life, Craft & Maker, Art & Design, and Music & Audio, there is something for everyone. Students can watch on-air broadcasts for free or buy a class and own the content for life.

Plus, you can get your daily creative fix on the iOS app with 1 free lesson of you choice , each and every day!

Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/13

Class Name: Meditation for Everyday Life
Text Link: Meditation for Everyday Life Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/13/2019
End Date: 01/14/2019
RSVP Date: 01/13/2019

Class Name: Etsy=C2=AE 101: Launch Your Handmade Shop
Text Link: Etsy=C2=AE 101: Launch Your Handmade Shop Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/14/2019
End Date: 01/15/2019
RSVP Date: 01/14/2019

Class Name: Design Your First Newsletter with InDesign=C2=AE CC
Text Link: Design Your First Newsletter with InDesign=C2=AE CC Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/15/2019
End Date: 01/16/2019
RSVP Date: 01/15/2019

Class Name: Building Your Photography Business for under $3,000
Text Link: Building Your Photography Business for under $3,000 Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/16/2019
End Date: 01/17/2019
RSVP Date: 01/16/2019

Class Name: 30 Days of Genius
Text Link: 30 Days of Genius Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/17/2019
End Date: 01/18/2019
RSVP Date: 01/17/2019

Class Name: Double Your Followers with Creative Marketing
Text Link: Double Your Followers with Creative Marketing Class at CreativeLive
Start Date: 01/18/2019
End Date: 01/19/2019
RSVP Date: 01/18/2019

Happy Learning, y’all ! ! !

FULL DISCLOSURE: Please note that the course/class links have my affiliate code in them and should you choose to purchase a class, I may get a referral fee. The links only direct you to the page where you can watch the course FOR FREE on the stated date(s).

Consider following me for updates and to find not only my other travel bloopers, blunders and shenanigans but also photography related news/reviews and the occasional contest entry.

All the photos (unless otherwise noted in the post) were taken by me and are available for sale. If you’re interested in buying an image or three, 😃 please don’t hesitate to contact me for more details. Thanks in advance!

Comments & Critiques are always welcome, as are upvotes and resteems.

Thanks for viewing and best wishes!

PS. If you want to check out my other ‘works’, you can find them here:

Portfolio
Blog
Fine Art

Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/6

COME CHECK OUT THESE FREE CLASSES !

For all you creatives, out there if you haven’t heard of Creative Live, you may be missing out. I always browse their site for anything to do with photography (including the legal and business aspects as well as the heavier side of image editing) and sign up for whatever I find interesting. I’ve watched many free tutorials and classes and have made a few purchases as well after watching the free live stream. I’m of the opinion that Creative Live is a very valuable resource even if you only watch the free classes!The above image was something I cooked up in Photoshop after being inspired from watching a free class on Creative Live. Check Out CreativeLive’s Free On-Air Classes.

I’ve included classes in other genre’s just in case anyone is interested in them and If you really haven’t heard about Creative Live, here’s their sales pitch:

Start learning for free today with the amazing selection of live and on air classes from Creative Live. You will learn creative skills from the world’s top experts – Pulitzer Prize, Grammy, Oscar Winners, and New York Times best selling authors, thought leaders, and legendary entrepreneurs. With over 1,500 curated classes in Photography & Video, Money & Life, Craft & Maker, Art & Design, and Music & Audio, there is something for everyone. Students can watch on-air broadcasts for free or buy a class and own the content for life.

Plus, you can get your daily creative fix on the iOS app with 1 free lesson of you choice , each and every day!

Free On-Air Classes – Week of 1/6

Class Name Intro to Apple Logic Pro
Text Link Intro to Apple Logic Pro Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/06/2019
End Date 01/07/2019
RSVP Date 01/06/2019

Class Name Goal-Setting for Your Best Year Yet
Text Link Goal-Setting for Your Best Year Yet Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/07/2019
End Date 01/08/2019
RSVP Date 01/07/2019

Class Name What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast
Text Link What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/08/2019
End Date 01/09/2019
RSVP Date 01/08/2019

Class Name LIVE CLASS The Photography Starter Kit for Beginners 2019
Text Link The Photography Starter Kit for Beginners 2019 Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/09/2019
End Date 01/09/2019
RSVP Date 01/09/2019

Class Name Photography 101
Text Link Photography 101 Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/10/2019
End Date 01/11/2019
RSVP Date 01/10/2019

Class Name iPhone X: The Quick Guide to Great Photos + Video
Text Link iPhone X: The Quick Guide to Great Photos + Video Class at CreativeLive
Start Date 01/11/2019
End Date 01/12/2019
RSVP Date 01/11/2019
Happy Learning, y’all ! ! !

FULL DISCLOSURE: Please note that the course/class links have my affiliate code in them and should you choose to purchase a class, I may get a referral fee. The links only direct you to the page where you can watch the course FOR FREE on the stated date(s).

Consider following me for updates and to find not only my other travel bloopers, blunders and shenanigans but also photography related news/reviews and the occasional contest entry.

All the photos (unless otherwise noted in the post) were taken by me and are available for sale. If you’re interested in buying an image or three, 😃 please don’t hesitate to contact me for more details. Thanks in advance!

Comments & Critiques are always welcome, as are upvotes and resteems.

Thanks for viewing and best wishes!

PS. If you want to check out my other ‘works’, you can find them here:

Portfolio
Blog
Fine Art