Tuesday, September 1, 2009

spring in my step

Welcome to spring. A curious idea here in Bali where spring seems to bloom eternally in flourishes of tropical colour. The rain and luxuriant green is a treat to my starved eyes. East of the Wallace Line at this time of year, the land is parched, dusty and brown. I think my little garden is progressing, until I arrive here and the sparse plantings seem pathetic in comparison to the Island of the Gods. I’ve had to shift hotels three times in as many days; perhaps a subtle hint from the accommodation gods to keep me moving?

I hire a scooter (for $4 day) and escape to the outskirts of town, where the rice padi are so electric green my optic nerve questions their authenticity. The divine rice plant is considered an animated female being and is treated with particular respect. Each stage is carried out on an auspicious day, accompanied by appropriate offerings (seen in photo montage above) and rites of passage.

Some of the rituals are carried out by the farmer at a small temporary shrine in the upstream corner of the field, others at the water temples. The rites include water opening, field preparations, transplanting, growth, panicle appearance, flowering and harvesting. The upstream corner of the rice field is sacred and it is here that offerings are made to Dewi Sri, the rice goddess.

The Botanic Garden is cool and serene, and for most of my visit I am the only person there. In an island renowned for manicured gardens of grandeur, the Botanic Garden is a little unkempt, but a lovely place to visit and support - if only for the most incredible blue blossom of an unidentified creeper (see photo above).

Steady rain is causing minor flooding in the streets and calls a halt to further scooter jaunts. Best thing to do is escape into the comfort of the day spa for a full body massage.

1 comment:

  1. The "blue" flowering vine is the Jade Vine, Strongylodon macrobotrys, from the Phillippines.


thanks for taking the time

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...