Bali 2014: Day Thirteen – Distinction Team Party Day

Wednesday 19 November 2014:

Today was a little different to our normal pattern – we were excited to be meeting up again with our good friend Fredy from Drivers with Distinction.  Over the past couple of years we have become great friends with Fredy and his team leader Dean.  Dean and I share a common bond in that we are both photographers and this trip I had promised to come spend some time with him and impart some of my knowledge of Photoshop.  Fredy had also promised me that HE made the absolute best Babi Guling (Roast Pork) in Bali so I held him to that with a request he show me how to make it.

So today we would be heading to Fredy’s house just outside of Denpasar to have a small party with Fredy, Dean and the rest of the Drivers with Distinction team.

Great views from our rooftop party in Denpasar tonight.

Great views from our rooftop party in Denpasar tonight.

That being said – first things first – we need to get some breakfast.

BREAKFAST

This morning we headed up the road from our hotel and popped into Randy’s Canadian Café & Bar for their breakfasts.  Randy’s offer some really tasty options for the breakfasts – I went for the American and darling wifey went for the Canadian Breakfast choice.  This with Bali Kopi and Juice came for Rp. 88k ($8.80 AUD).

Randy's American Breakfast - Unfortunately they were out of Bacon this morning so opted for the Sausage.  Also note the "Hash Brown" more of a roast potato - still tasty!  Plenty of food to get you filled up and started for the day.

Randy’s American Breakfast – Unfortunately they were out of Bacon this morning so opted for the Sausage. Also note the “Hash Brown” more of a roast potato – still tasty! Plenty of food to get you filled up and started for the day.

Canadian Breakfast - lovely Pancakes and the Maple Syrup is always nice.

Canadian Breakfast – lovely Pancakes and the Maple Syrup is always nice.

After breakfast we jumped in a taxi down to Hardy’s to stop up on more “essentials” – I am sure I have droned on about Hardy’s before but it is a great place to get everything from Clothes to fresh fruit and groceries.  Upstairs you will find plenty of souvenirs (and most at a cheaper price than you will get in the markets!) and also some good value clothing.  We spent about Rp. 810k upstairs getting plenty of clothes and souvenirs – then about Rp. 400k downstairs on food and grocery items.

Fredy gave us a call to let us know he will pick us up around 1pm so we just headed back to the hotel to laze around the pool and relax.

The Semarandana Pool Area.  Not huge but plenty of room to sit around and relax.

The Semarandana Pool Area. Not huge but plenty of room to sit around and relax.

The pool area at Hotel Semarandana is not huge, the pool isn’t massive but to be honest this is only a small hotel tucked away in a small little area.  We stayed 5 days here in June and I think only saw people in the pool once or twice, so chances are you won’t be fighting for a chair.  We were also a little worried about the noise level with our room upstairs above the pool – but really when you spend your time out and about during the day in Sanur you don’t notice any significant noise.

The pool gets a bit of direct sunlight during the day but not enough to make it a hot-tub! There is also enough shade through the day for those who want to get out of the sun.

The pool gets a bit of direct sunlight during the day but not enough to make it a hot-tub! There is also enough shade through the day for those who want to get out of the sun.

FREDY’S PARTY


Disclaimer: Now at this point I want to put in a little warning/disclaimer – if you are offended by the sight of gorgeous pork roasting on a spit, or the idea of a pig being killed for the purposes of food please stop reading now.  I am not a vegetarian so have no problem seeing how and where my food comes from but I respect not all my readers will agree so rather than being offended please stop reading this post now!

Ok so with that out of the way – Fredy rocked up at about 1pm to pick us up and take us back to his street for our party.  Just to give Fredy a little plug feel free to check out some of my past blog posts about our many tours and day trips we have done with Fredy – search for #Fredy on my blog and you can see what we have gotten up to.

Hard at work with Dean discussing the finer points of Photoshop.

Hard at work with Dean discussing the finer points of Photoshop.

We arrived at Fredy’s house and sat and enjoyed a couple of drinks and snacks with Fredy’s family.  Obviously to protect Fredy’s family and neighbours I won’t show you where we were but they live in this lovely little part of Denpasar but away from the crowds.  It feels more like part of Ubud rather than Denpasar – suffice to say Danielle and I could both easily live in this neighbourhood….hmm any houses for rent?

Next up it was time to get the little piggie ready to become our lovely Babi Guling dinner.  Fredy asked me if I wanted to see how we prepare the pig “from the beginning?” – yeah sure I figured.

So yes "from the beginning" meant the Pork was still alive.  Dean and Fredy helped us take piggie down to the river for it to be "prepared"

So yes “from the beginning” meant the Pork was still alive. Dean and Fredy helped us take piggie down to the river for it to be “prepared”

I will save you from any gory videos or pictures – I figure as a Meat Eater it is somewhat my obligation to see where our food comes from and I must admit it was quite confronting seeing the little piggie get killed and cleaned out.

The various herbs and oils that would be put inside the pig to basically baste it from the inside out while the pig is roasting.

The various herbs and oils that would be put inside the pig to basically baste it from the inside out while the pig is roasting.

Was really interesting to see how the pig is prepared and also how much of the pig actually gets kept and used for cooking.  Unlike here where we tend to only want to buy the “best” bits of a Pig almost all the animal gets used including many of the internal organs – which is actually quite good to see that very little goes to waste.

Fredy, Dean and Dan getting a lovely heat tan from the open fire.

Fredy, Dean and Dan getting a lovely heat tan from the open fire.

Such a simple way of cooking – just put the Pig on the pole and roll backwards and forwards from the flame.  The spot we were cooking was between a couple of buildings and had a nice concrete wall to the side so A LOT of radiated heat.  There is quite an art however in the cooking in that you don’t want the pig too close to the flames otherwise the outside will cook too quickly compared to inside.  It basically cooks from the inside out.

Using a palm frond to baste the skin with some oil towards the end to help crisp up the skin and finish the cooking process.

Using a palm frond to baste the skin with some oil towards the end to help crisp up the skin and finish the cooking process.

Towards the end you can see the lovely golden colour of the skin - just towards the end they move it towards the fire to really crisp up the skin into a nice crackle.

Towards the end you can see the lovely golden colour of the skin – just towards the end they move it towards the fire to really crisp up the skin into a nice crackle.

PARTY TIME

So after the little piggie had been thoroughly cooked we moved up to the gorgeous rooftop terrace at the end of the street to have our dinner and a couple of drinks.  Dean had arranged for almost all of his Distinction Team to come join the party as well as Fredy’s family.  Was glad to see so many people come together because there is no way wifey and I could have eaten all 20kgs of that Pig alone!

Got to give a massive credit to Fredy's Family - they managed to move their entire loungeroom setting down the road and set it up here on the roof so we would have somewhere to sit and chat! How awesome is that!

Got to give a massive credit to Fredy’s Family – they managed to move their entire loungeroom setting down the road and set it up here on the roof so we would have somewhere to sit and chat! How awesome is that!

Great view from the rooftop - hard to believe this is technically still Denpasar with great rice fields and farms only across the river

Great view from the rooftop – hard to believe this is technically still Denpasar with great rice fields and farms only across the river

Great place to sit and watch the sunset over a few cold drinks.  Was great to catch up with some of the team as well – over our last few trips to Bali we have driven with Hadi / Nyoman (Mandika) / Fredy / and Kasa so nice to be able to sit back and have a great chat with them about their lives and families.

Can you pick the odd one out? I think I will fit in well as the new team driver for the Drivers with Distinction Team.....  Some funny guys here great to have a drink and a chat with them.

Can you pick the odd one out? I think I will fit in well as the new team driver for the Drivers with Distinction Team….. Some funny guys here great to have a drink and a chat with them.

 

As always - Photographer Dean was on hand to take some great shots - even though he uses a Canon (I am a Nikon Man) he is a fantastic photographer!

As always – Photographer Dean was on hand to take some great shots – even though he uses a Canon (I am a Nikon Man) he is a fantastic photographer!

The men sitting down enjoying dinner and a chat.  When in Rome they say - so sit on the floor and eat with your hands!

The men sitting down enjoying dinner and a chat. When in Rome they say – so sit on the floor and eat with your hands!

After dinner however things got a bit messy – so sorry the photos somewhat stopped, the Johnnie Walker Scotch came out and we all had a couple of drinks…. was wonderful fun bonding with these guys and having a great time – good to see the generally Scotch and Coke will bridge almost all cultural divides.

The party ended at about 11pm and we headed back to Sanur, making it home around midnight.  Was an absolutely fantastic night having a party with these guys – Thanks to Dean and Fredy for organising this we had such a great time.

If you are heading to Bali and want to do some tours with a great team of drivers please do check out Drivers with Distinction – especially my friend Fredy.  His sense of humour and genuine smile will ensure you thoroughly enjoy your time in Bali.  They will also be able to ensure you see the REAL BALI and experience some lovely memories.  *I can’t promise you a Fredy Special Babi Guling but he can definitely take you to some good quality Babi Guling Warungs so you can sample this lovely cuisine.

 

Straight to bed tonight, strange the head is feeling a bit sore – can’t have been the scotch surely…. see you tomorrow morning.


Thanks for your continued support of Just My Travel Blog.  It is a great joy to see so many people viewing these posts and also leaving me comments – Have you even had Babi Guling in Bali?  What did you think of it?  Thanks for following along this trip and we will see you tomorrow.

 

 

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