Shopping at the Ubud market…

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Ubud is definitely a shoppers paradise. One of the fun spots to shop in Ubud is its huge market. The market is located very centrally in Jalan Raya (Ubud’s main road).

The market is open from 6am till 6pm every day of the week. From 6am till around 9am the fresh fruit/food stall holders are set up. Here you can purchase a vast array of produce. We bought yummy bananas, mangosteens and snake fruit. It is a great time to just wander and watch people purchasing their shrine offerings and daily goods.

After 9am the regular stall holders set up. These stalls sell a vast array of goods from fake sunglasses, t-shirts, beads, Balinese souvenirs right through to cute little pottery teapots.

However the markets are not for the faint hearted! Bartering is the order of the day here and stall holders expect that you will negotiate with them. My tips are:

  • Have fun…remember you are on holidays.
  • Only barter on goods you intend to buy. If you intend to buy decide on your price and stick to it. Sometimes when you walk away unsuccessfully the stall holder will come down to your price (if your price is fair!)
  • If you are not interested a friendly “Just looking” and a smile is your best bet.

My boys loved to barter. They went to the market each day to get presents for their friends and compared notes on who got the cheapest price. They were happy and so were the stall holders.

Lotus be friends…

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My name, Lakshmi, and the lotus go together. Most images we see of the Indian goddess Lakshmi has her seated in the blossoming lotus. Maybe that is why I adore the lotus so much.
In Hindu tradition, the lotus represents beauty, non-attachment, purity and resurrection. The lotus is rooted in the mud but floats on the water without becoming wet or muddy. As a lotus is able to emerge from the muddy waters unspoilt and pure it is considered to represent a wise and spiritually enlightened quality in a person; it is representative of somebody who carries out their tasks with little concern for any reward and with a full liberation from attachment.
“One who performs his duty without attachment, surrendering the results unto the Supreme Lord, is unaffected by sinful action, as the lotus leaf is untouched by water.”
– Bhagavad Gita 5.10

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Ubud is positively blooming with beautiful lotuses. Whether in a small stone bowl or a large pond they are everywhere you turn. Lotuses have the power to brighten even the murkiest pond. In 2014 I’m going to make a more conscious effort to be like the lotus. I want to be more considerate in my actions towards others and work on my attachment to my belongings. The path is long but at least if I am able to identify my faults I can skip along the path without straying too far away from it.

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Casa Luna coffee perfection…

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Each morning we have been having our daily coffee fix at the lovely Casa Luna in Ubud. Situated in Jalan Raya it is only a hop, skip and jump from our guesthouse. The coffee here is stunning and the pastries to die for!

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Casa Luna is open all day for lunch and dinner too. They also have a cooking school which has great reviews.

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Casa Luna has been going strong for 21 years and due to their friendly staff and wonderful food I’m sure they’ll be here forever…