Sarah and I arrived for a week in Bali to do photo shoots for NOVICA and National Geographic. We had a very packed schedule of shoots and scouting locations and had really ONE free day to sleep in and do what we wanted.
Our fashion shoot took us to the sacred monkey forest and the monkeys were all over us! The local men were putting down their ceremonial offerings to the statues and the rogue monkeys would just patiently sit and then eat and toss the prayer offerings. They are a menace!
I had to show my “monkey toes” compared to theirs, because my family and friends have always nicknamed me “monkey toes”, but I HOPE my feet look slightly better than theirs!
While I was shooting the monkeys jumped on my bag and tried to steal my photo gear and one monkey even was imitating my assistant and tried to hold the reflector!
So when we finally ventured out it was raining and since we have been to Bali a couple of times before, we decided to do something different.
We had never been to the East side of the island to Tulamben and we heard about the USS Liberty Shipwreck that was there. So since the rain never really affects diving under the sea, we hired a driver and just took off!
The drive through the mountains was spectacular. It is the Bali that I know and love. Rolling hills and terraced rice paddies, people working in the fields with their straw hats, families packed onto motorbikes, people weaving prayer offerings out of palm leaves and leaving them at their home temples, and ceremonies spilling out into the streets blocking traffic. Ahh, Bali. I will always think of the sounds of the Gambalan playing and smells of wet grass and burning incense.
After three hours and a mixture of sunshine and rain, Sarah and I finally reached Tulamben. In thirty minutes we were under the sea in a huge WWII sunken warship that was torpedoed by the Japanese. Over 60 years later it is now a natural reef with gorgeous coral growing on the sides of the ship. There were huge schools of Parrot Fish larger than we were and it was surreal to swim inside the ship. The sun set while we were in the ocean and I had to use a flashlight towards the end of the dive. Pretty terrifying at first since I have a fear of dark water, but the beauty around me helped overcome my fears. Here are just a few shots of the gorgeous drive we took from Ubud to Tulamben.