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Building a Rehabilitation Center for Bali's Handicapped.
Kapanlagi.com reports that Rp. 3 billion (US$270,000) is being spent on the building and equipping of a rehabilitation center to assist the disabled in Bali. Already in an advanced stage of construction, the handicapped rehabilitation center, to be operated by Bali’s Social Services Department, is located on Jalan Ida Bagus Mantra, next door to the East Bali Police Precinct (Polsek Denpasar Timur). The Center is set to commence operations in 2010. The Center, when operational, will provide shelter for 24 patients and have a well equipped physical therapy and rehabilitation center. According to experts developing the center there are 30,000 handicapped people in Bali, with almost half that number in need of prosthetic legs and arms. The new center will provide customized prosthetic limbs together with a training center to help patients become proficient in the care and usage of their artificial arms and legs.
Tourism as a Three Ring Circus?
Governor Pastika Delivers a Stinging Rebuke on How Bali Promotes its Tourism Products.
BeritaBali.com reports that Bali tourism promotion recently came in for pointed criticism delivered by the Island’s governor Made Mangku Pastika. Depicting Bali’s tourism promotional efforts to the workings of a badly organized three-ring circus, Pastika labeled Bali’s tourism marketing as ineffective and inefficient. The governor complained that the results achieved by tourism promotion compare poorly with the amount of money expended. Elaborating further, he said the billions of Rupiahs spent to promote tourism were more decorative than meaningful, focused on “playing” at tourism as opposed to “working” for the tourism industry, Pastika went on to say: ”There are many cultural delegations sent abroad. When they arrive at their overseas destinations they typically perform before the Indonesian embassy. What use is that? It’s like a circus group without a clear mission.” The Governor called on Bali’s tourism promotion team to spend the billions of Rupiahs now dedicated to cultural missions be diverted to international television promotion. Underling his message, Pastika said: “Make quality tourism promotion films. After that show them on CNN and other international television channels. That will be far more useful than stage performances presented abroad.” For 2009 Bali’s promotional budget has been reduced from Rp. 5 billion to only Rp. 4 billion. [See: Bali Tourism Promotion Budget Reduced for 2009]. Closing his remarks with a final rebuke, Pastika said: “Tourism promotion groups which used to number 7 or more people should be reduced in size. Government officials with a third echelon rank or below should participate in such groups. Those promoting tourism abroad must also be people who really work to promote tourism, and not be on an overseas shopping trip.”
5 Balinese Leaders Honored for Service to Their Island.
Ketut Nadha Nugraha Awards Presented to Former Governor, Two Academics, Dance Teacher, and Handicraft Manufacturer.
Five Balinese were honored on January 5, 2009 through the presentation of the Ketut Nadha Nugraha Press Award named after the founder of the Bali Post. This year’s inductees represent the eighth time that Island leaders were singled out for excellence in their individual professions and service to the community. This year’s winner were: Drs. Dewa Made Beratha - ”Agriculture Must Not be Left Behind” Bali’s former governor, who was born in 1941, held the Island’s top post for two terms. During his terms of office, Made Beratha was known for his efforts to protect and preserve Bali’s traditions and culture, equaled by his attention to preserve the natural environment. Beratha also pioneered cash assistance to Bali’s traditional villages and to the ”subak” irrigation systems. His financial assistance to traditional villages was aimed at ensuring those living in the traditional village context are better able to withstand the pressures of globalization. In a number of interviews Beratha consistently championed Bali’s traditional villages as the first line of defense to prevent cultural degradation. Beratha also used his role as governor to encourage traditional villages to provide cultural education. Also noted by those presenting the award was Beratha’s support for the subak irrigation system seen as essential to preserving Bali’s agricultural character. Prof. Dr. IGN Gorda, M.S., M.M. - ”Attention to Bali’s Workers” The late Professor Gorda was a popular figure among the people of Bali. Throughout his lifetime, this professor from the Royal family of the Puri Anyar Sukasada in Buleleng was know for his commitment to improving the quality and welfare of Balinese workers. To this end, Gorda dedicated his life to being an educator, commencing his teaching career in 1963. At that time, the man who was to later become the founder of the Universitas Pendidikan Nasional (Undiknas) and the STIE Satya Dharma Singaradja, began his careers as a student at the Singaraja branch of the Malang Teachers’ Institute (IKIP) Not content to confine his activities to that of a simple teacher, Gorda founded a number of educational institutes. Gorda, who also worked part time as a reporter, was a frequent commentator in the Bali Post contributing his ideas on development from a Balinese Hindu perspective. Professor I.B. Adnyana Manuaba - ”Attend to Bali’s Environment” Acknowledged across Bali as a logical and creative academic, Manuaba once caused a sensation when he convened a development conference of Balinese college graduates. That conference brought together 400 Balinese bachelor and post graduate degree students at a Denpasar hotel in August of 1964 to discuss development plans for Bali. Gifted at communicating ideas and concepts both verbally and in writing, Manuaba he has written numerous books and articles. He is also a regular columnist in the Bali Post. His creative and visionary writings cover a wide range of subjects including hygiene, occupational safety, health, and ergonomic design. One of three founding members of the Association for Health in Indonesian Sports (PPKORI), in 1970, Manuaba also served as the Head of the Provincial Agency for Industrial Hygiene, Health and Workplace Safety from 1972-1982. Bright and insightful, Professor Manuaba has played a fundamental role in increasing public awareness towards the environment and remains a thoughtful critic of government policies he views as threatening the natural balance of the Island’s ecology. I Gede Geruh - ”Preservator of Gambuh” If one speaks of Gambuh - one of Bali’s oldest classical dance forms, the name of one of its greatest supporters - the late I Gede Geruh, must also be discussed. Born in Denpasar in 1915 and the father of 6 children, Geruh was acknowledged from an early age to be a naturally talented Gambuh performer. This led to his employment as a special instructor at the Indonesian Academy of Dance (ASTI), the precursor of the Indonesian Arts Institute (ISI). During his long tenure as a professor of Gambuh Geruh earned a rightful reputation as the savior of this dance-drama style and the force behind the creation of the Gambuh Anyar tradition. Tireless in his dedication to Gambuh, Geruh traveled across Bali to share his art by teaching in the many villages eager to learn from the Master. Like all great teachers, Geruh was generous of spirit, sharing his teachings with all who expressed an interest in Gambuh, including many foreign students. Colleagues and fellow dance teachers are unanimous in crediting the late I Gede Geruh with the strong appeal and many followers of Gambuh found in Bali today. Made Sugandhi - ”The Manufacturer of ‘Pis Bolong’” The owner of CV Tripple Star Bali (TSB), Made Sugandhi of Klungkung, together with his family, began recycling metal to manufacture the tradition ”Pis Bolong” or Chinese Keping coins for use in creating interior accessories for homes and hotels. Beginning as a home industry that now employs 54 people and exports its products to Dubai, Thailand, France and Morocco.
Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathi
Bali’s R.O.L.E. Foundation Hosts Two Showing of Documentary Film on the Work of Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathi.
The R.O.L.E. Foundation (Rivers, Oceans, Lands, Ecology) will be hosting two exclusive showings an award-winning documentary film covering the work of the Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Wingari Maathai. ”Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathi” relates the dramatic story of how Wangari Maathi took the simple act of planting a tree and turned it into a nationwide movement to safeguard the environment, protect human rights and promote democracy. Two Special Showings ””Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathi” will be show on the following dates at two different locations in Bali: • Friday, January 30, 2009 at the Seaside Restaurant on Jalan Double Six in Seminyak at 8 p.m.. • Friday, February 6, 2009 at the Nusa Dua Bar & Grill on Geger Beach at Nusa Dua at 8 p.m.. Sylvie Blanchet, a contributor to the film will be in attendance at both showings. Those attending are ask to contribute Rp. 50,000 (US$4.50) which will go to the R.O.L.E. Eco-Learning Center Reasonably priced food and refreshment will be available and a raffle with interesting prizes will also be on offer. There are no reservations required, but seating is limited. Early arrival is recommended to ensure obtaining a good seat for the film. For more information telephone +62-(0)361-778149. Related Website [R.O.L.E. Foundation Website]
AirAsia Launching New Bangkok to Bali Service
Low Cost Airline Will Fly Daily Between Bangkok and Bali Starting January 20, 2009.
Thai AirAsia - the Thailand associate of the AirAsia Group have announced the introduction of a daily Bangkok-Denpasar (Bali) service effective January 20, 2009. To kick-start the new Bali service Thai AirAsia is offering a special one-way introductory fare to Bali from Bangkok for only THB 999 (US$28.60). Seats are very limited for this special offer which will be sold on a first served basis. Indonesia AirAsia’s Director of Marketing and Distribution, Widijastoro Nugroho told Bisnis Indonesia: “The opening of the route from Bangkok to Denpasar reflects the commitment of AirAsia to advance the tourism of both countries, especially the tourism industry of Bali with is well known internationally.” The new Bangkok-Bali service will be operated with Airbus 320 aircraft . The new Bangkok service by AirAsia complements an entire range of new Indonesian services being launched by the Group to Pekanbaru, Jakarta, Surabaya and Denpasar. In addition to the daily Bangkok-Denpasar flight, there is also a new daily service planned between Singapore and Bali. This new service is still awaiting formal government approval.
Sink or Swim
Some Facts and Figures on Bali’s Life Saving Service.
Here’s some of the latest figures on swimming and lifesaving in Bali gleaned from a recent article in NusaBali. • There were 390 near-drowning incidents recorded on all Bali beaches in 2008 with 28 drowning fatalities recorded. • Popular Kuta Beach remains the most dangerous beach in terms of swimming incidents with 314 near-drownings and 15 fatalities occurring in 2008. • The Badung and Denpsar Regency/City of Bali provide a total of 146 lifesavers working from 19 posts. • Kuta experienced an increase in incidents in 2008 over 2007 when 277 incidents were reported costing 15 lives. • The Denpasar Tourism service has complained to the press that there efforts to post certain beaches as “no swim zones” has been thwarted by thieves who quickly steel warning signs installed on the beach. • The Balinese names for its lifesaving service is ”Baliwista which is an abbreviation for ”Badan Penyelamat Wisata Tirta” or “The Organization for Water Sports Rescue.”
Domestic Air Passengers Numbers Increase Slightly.
Year to Date Domestic Passengers Through End of November 2008 Increase by 3.37%.
The total number of Indonesia domestic air passengers for the period January-November 2008 totaled 29.09 million, an increase of 3.37% over the same period in 2008 (28.14 million). Bisnis.com reports that domestic air passengers in Indonesia for November 2008 totaled 2.59 million a decrease of 7.95% when compared to the previous month. Downturns in the number of passengers were reported by all major airport across the nation, including Surabaya (-13.37%), Bali (-11.05%), Medan (-10.15%), Makassar (-6.36%) and Jakarta (-3.17%). The biggest contributor of November’s domestic air passengers remains Jakarta with a 37.49% share (970,030) followed by Surabaya with a 11.39% share (294,900).
To the Dalai Lama, With Love
Anand Krishna Bring Delivers 2.5 Meter Statue of the Lord Buddha to the Spiritual Leader of the People of Tebet.
Anand Krishna, an Indonesian inter-faith spiritualist leader and founder of the Bali and Jakarta based Anand Krishna Center flew with 6 members of his organization to Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh in India to present a statue of the Lord Buddha to His Holiness, Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama. The 2.5 meter high statue was carved taken from the same stone quarry used in the original construction of the ninth-century Borobudur temple in Central Java. Carved by a Balinese sculptor, the statue will be consecrated by the Dalai Lama and installed in the compound of the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies (Deemed University), Sarnath, (Uttar Pradesh), India. Anand Krishna the gift from Indonesia to the Dalai Lama is intended to re-strengthen the spiritual and cultural ties between the peoples of Indonesia and Tibet and extend support to the non-violent struggle to protect the cultural heritage of Tibet. According to Krishna: “Representing the peace loving people of Indonesia, I salute His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama for his untiring and relentless efforts in finding peaceful solutions to protect the historical and cultural heritage of Tibet based on tolerance and respect.” A Full Circle Historically. Explaining the deeper connections that exist between Indonesia and the people of Tibet, Krishna continued: “In 1012 A.D., Indian Buddhist monk and scholar Atisha traveled to the Indonesian archipelago and continued his journey to Tibet where he taught the ancient art of Tong-Len meditation which he learnt from an indigenous Indonesian Master, Dharmakirti Svarnadvipi, a name very close to the heart of His Holiness and the people of Tibet.” Adding, “By offering this statue from Indonesia to His Holiness, and to be placed on Indian soil – I hope, I pray that the peoples of Tibet, India and Indonesia are united in love, peace and harmony.” Further said Anand Krishna.” Anand Ashram Chairperson Ms. Maya Safira Muchtar told the press she regrets that not many Indonesians are aware of the historical bond between the Indonesian Archipelago and Tibet: “It truly is a shame that most modern Indonesians are unaware of the existence of grand masters Atisha and Dharmakirti-Svarnadvipi whose works had significant contribution towards the magnificent cultural and spiritual traditions of Tibet. This humble offering is an attempt to correct this.” Ms. Muchtar considers Anand Krishna’s visit to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama as the one of the most significant and historical moments in the histories of Tibet, India and Indonesia., adding: “We all belong to the one and same Indus Valley Civilization, together we can respond wisely and compassionately to the problems faced by our world. Together we can realize our common dream of ‘One Earth, One Sky, and One Humankind.’” Anand Krishna Anand Krishna has written more than 120 books in the past 10 years, both in English and Indonesian, on subjects including spirituality and philosophy, Originally from Solo in Central Java, Krishna is also recognized for his many social and humanitarian activities, and the promotion of interfaith understanding and appreciation. Related Websites [www.anandkrishna.org] www.aumkar.org]
Brotherly Love in the Hills of Kintamani
Marriage Annulled after One Month When Both the Groom and Local Villagers Discover the Bride is ‘Just one of the Guys.’
Front-page coverage on a number of Bali newspapers was dedicated in early January 2009 to the sudden and abrupt annulment of the marriage between Ketut Bud (30) and his wife, Ketut Nik (25) after only one month of marriage. As best as we can piece together the story of their romance from several press sources, Bud and Nik first met as the result of a misdirected SMS that eventually led to a “date.” Blame it on “love at first site” or “bad lighting,” but Bud was instantly smitten with Nik, managing to even “stay over” at Nik’s house for one night, where, as the story goes, the comely Nik refused Bud amorous advances. Passions denied, Bud pursued Nik proposing marriage three weeks later. It was only later that Bud realized that the lack of the customary village officials at his traditional wedding ceremony held at Nik’s house should have raised some suspicion. In any case, love is blind and Bud brought his wife back to his village in Kintamani where another traditional matrimonial ceremony was performed before village officials and members of Bud’s family. Not Tonight, Dear Alarm bells should have sounded for poor Bud when a perceptive member of his village in Kintamani enquired regarding the status of Ketut Nik, asking if a nyetana ceremony had been held. The nyetana is a particularly Balinese ceremony used to adopt a male into a heirless Balinese household. In this ceremony the bride become a male heir and her husband a “nominal female.” This allows a man to move into his bride’s house and become the male issue of the brides family by abandoning his ancestral village and adopting his wife’s. Snide and somewhat pointed enquiries from neighbors failed to move Bud to action. Married for more than a month, Bud also apparently took in stride Ketut Nik’s continuing refusal to consummate the marriage, refusing her husband’s advances; alternating excuses between frigidity and a chronic headache. Close proximity in the village made villagers aware of Ketut Nik’s continuing rejection of Bud and the poor lad’s lovelorn frustration. Working on suspicions that the bridegroom refused to acknowledge, village officials corned the new bride and performed a physical examination that revealed Ketut Nik was, in fact, a fully equipped young man. Chagrinned and embarrassed Bud and his family quickly bundled off Ketut Nik, returning “her” to her village of Rendang, announcing the marriage was null and void. Bud’s fellow villagers are reportedly still discussing what, if any, traditional ceremonies may be required to return balance and harmony to their corner of the universe.
Vice President End Airport Depate
Vice President Kalla Order Expansion of Bali Airport Be Completed by 2011 Ending Depate on New Airport in Bali's North.
Indonesia’s Vice President Jusuf Kalla has apparently brought the never-ending debate on the future of Bali’s international airport to an end by instructing that a Rp. 1.2 trillion (US$108 million) expansion must be completed by 2011. As reported by Bisnis Indonesia, the Vice President issued the instruction following an inspection visit to the airport over the Christmas/New Year period. He was accompanied on his visit by the Minister of Communications Jusman Syafii Djamal, the Minister of Culture and Tourism Jero Wacik, the governor of Bali Made Mangku Pastika, the Regent (Bupati) of Badung A.A. Gde Agung and the Director of Angkasa Pura I Bambang Darwoto. Declaring there was no immediate need to extend the length of the current airport, Kalla directed that the current improvements should be done by 2011 and should be sufficient to meet Bali’s transportation needs through 2020. Rejecting calls to make the current runway long enough to handle the jumbo Airbus 380, Vice President Kalla discounted the importance of having 12 hour long flights that end in Bali. According to Kalla, “The cost exceeds the benefit if we extend the length of the current runway to accommodate airplanes that handle 500 passengers.” Bambang Darwoto of the airport management authority said the current 15,000 square meter domestic terminal would be moved to the larger 70,000 square meter international terminal. Darwoto also said that the Vice President vetoed the idea of building a mall between the international and domestic terminals, saying the airport was not a transit facility but a destination airport. The changes will also see the international terminal moved to the space occupied by the current domestic terminal and expanded to 70,000 square meters. Other changes scheduled for the improved airport include more apron space to accommodate more parked aircraft, a four floor parking facility, and a new control tower. In 2008 the Bali airport handled an estimated 5 million domestic and international passengers. Related Article
Minister Wacik Lobbies for North Bali Airport]
Rabies Spreads to South Denpasar
Officials Intensify Rabies Vaccination Program for Bali Pets as New Case Proves Disease Has Spread to South Denpasar.
(1/9/2009) Despite mass efforts by officials to vaccinate pets and cull stray dogs, the threat of Rabies has now spread beyond the Ungasan peninsula area of South Bali as authorities have now confirmed the disease in a street dog captured in the Sesetan area of South Denpasar.
As reported by NusaBali, the head of Animal Control (Dinas Peternakan) for Bali, Ida Bagus Ketut Alit, has confirmed that a sick dog captured near a veterinarian clinic in Sestan has tested positive for the potentially fatal disease. The findings were the results of clinical pathology tests carried out in Bandung, West Java on January 1, 2009. The latest finding now demonstrates that the rabies virus have been confirmed in 7 separate tests from samples taken from Ungasan Village (South Kuta), Kedonganan Selatan (South Badung) and Sesetan (South Denpasar). Alit told the press that the latest results means that Denpasar must now officially be considered a rabies infected area.
Free rabies vaccination will soon be available to all pet owners in the sub districts of Denpasar as official hold clinics, typically based at the banjar halls of each community.
In response to the latest findings vaccination and capture programs were scheduled to get underway in South Denpasar beginning on Saturday, January 10, 2009. Authorities had already conducted vaccination programs in the Panjer and Sesetan areas of Bali.
Since the rabies epidemic was uncovered in Bali in December, nearly 800 street dogs have been captured and eliminated, while over 6,000 pet dogs have received vaccination.
Bookings Strong Over Chinese New Years
Bali Expecting Many Visitors for Two Weeks from January 24 2009.
(1/9/2009) Many Bali Hotels and Villas are reporting strong booking activity over the Chinese New Year Holidays coming in late January 2009. While the official celebration of Chinese New Year will be marked on Monday, January 26, 2009, the celebration of the changing of Chinese Zodiac stretches for fifteen days.
The Year of the Ox
The Chinese New Year that is ushered in on January 26th will be the “Year of the Ox” – just one animal in a 12 animal Chinese zodiac cycle used to designate the specific character one can expect from the year to come. Meanwhile, the year to which we bid farewell on January 26th will be the "Year of the Rat."
We'll let you decide whether or not to place any credence in these animal associations, based on the kind of year you had over the past twelve months and what kind of year your expecting ahead.
• The Year of the Rat - The Rat, associated with the year now ending, is linked with aggression, wealth, charisma and orderliness. On the downside, the rodent can also bring death, war, black magic, plague and atrocities. The rat represents the first animal of the 12-animal zodiac cycle so those born in that year tend to be first as leaders, trend setters and even generals in battle. In keeping with their station in life, these "rat" people are charismatic, hard working, determined, passionate, and single-minded.
Since rats are alert, cowardly, quick, sly and ambitious - your “Year of the Rat” might have contained any of these characteristics.
• The Year of the Ox - The Ox, representing the year to come, bespeaks prosperity obtained through courage and hard work. Those born under this sign are leaders, dependable and often achieve great things in their lifetimes. They are also persistent and dogged in their determination – trudging on until their goal is eventually achieved. “Ox” people tend to be quiet, kind, compassionate, logical and realistic. Like an old ox, these people are intelligent and determined; and not amenable to being pushed around by anyone.
For the difficult financial year ahead, please remember that the Ox despises extravagance and always lives within his or her means. They do not like debt or credit cards, because they need a peaceful atmosphere without the worries of debt in order to do their best work.
Looking for a Room Over Chinese New Year?
If your seeking accommodation in Bali over the coming Chinese New Year, balidiscovery.com is here to help, regardless of your Chinese Zodiac sign.
[See: Bali Tourism Promotion Budget Reduced for 2009]
[Bali on a Budget]
Khong Hee Fat Choy!
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