Tom's amazing photo for "Sightings on the Beach in Bali"...Impressive macro skills!...Small things...



This is a common site on the road, a motorbike loaded with vegetation for the local's cows and buffalo which they harvest at no cost from the forests including designated locations in the national parks.
"Sightings on the Beach in Bali"
This praying mantis actually looked at Tom while he took this photo.  Good shot, Honey!  He was as big as the palm of my hand.
When life is so simple that we spent the better part of a day watching and taking photos of the interaction between a female and a male praying mantis positioned on the infinity edge of the pool, we know we're in paradise.

As I spent my usual 35 minutes exercising in the pool, it was hard not to notice the two good sized creatures seeming to be keeping an eye on one another over a period of hours, long after we got out of the pool and our short stints in the sun to take cover under the cabana.

The vegetation in Bali is breathtaking staying lush and green with fairly consistent short bursts of rain.  We haven't experienced one entirely cloudy day in over a month.
As they waded in the water on the stone edge of the infinity pool I made my way as close as possible.  The larger of the two which I assumed was the male, seemed to look me in the eyes, totally unafraid of this huge being in his presence. 

While in the pool I asked Tom to get the camera and take a photo of the praying mantis from the ocean side of the pool, never expecting it would come out so well.  When he got this great shot, I couldn't stop smiling.  Ah, nature.  Even in its most primitive form of insects, there's magic to behold.
Its common to see these archways upon leaving a town or village. Selamat jalan means "have a good journey" in Indonesian.
In my old life if I'd seen anything crawling, walking or flying in my close proximity, I'd have screamed and run for cover. Now, in this life, I can't grab the camera quickly enough to take a photo, whether its an ugly scorpion as shown in this photo I took in the bathroom or a butterfly we attempt to capture near the blooming flowers.
This scorpion was in the master bath, very close to the hanging bath towels.  Since that time, we been shaking out our towels and clothing before use.
No, we'll never have the skills of a professional photographer using the relatively inexpensive lightweight cameras we replace every 18 months or less due to humid conditions.  But, taking photos nonetheless provides us with some pretty wonderful memories we delight in sharing with our readers.

Yesterday morning when Gede stopped at a few choice spots on the trip to Negara.  In this short period since our arrival, he's come to understands how much we love taking photos of the simple aspects of life in Bali as opposed to the typical tourist locations.
On yesterday's trip to Negara, Gede stopped so I could take this photos of workers planted rice for the new season.
Of course, we're far from many of the typical tourist locations which for us isn't disappointing.  We still have hundreds of photos we've yet to share as we continue to explore a few times a week whether on a road trip or a walk in neighborhood, both of which are equally interesting.

Yesterday as planned, we completed the paperwork for one more of our required embassy visits while in Singapore, the 60 day extension for our second trip to Bali beginning on September 1st.  As required by the Indonesian immigration department, we must provide proof of our flights both in and out of the country during that period.

The rice paddies are meticulously designed for perfect crops.
After completion of the necessary applications and printing them on the villa's printer, we got to work on the flights we'd yet to book.  September may seem like a long time from now but time flies quickly this needed to get accomplished before we depart at the end of this month.

Finding good flight times is always tricky when neither of us likes flying in the middle of the night. We don't sleep well on a flight making the following day challenging while we're in a state of sheer exhaustion. 

Note the scarecrow in another area where the workers were planting rice for the new season.
As we've aged staying up all night isn't as easy as it used to be in our youth.  On several occasions we've traveled overnight which after one good night's sleep we return to feeling well and energized.

Tomorrow, we'll share the details of our required early departures, losing a few days of prepaid rent in order to accommodate our itinerary. We don't expect or ask property owners to credit us for a day or two early departure (or a late arrival). This isn't always a scenario we can easily anticipate a year or two in advance when booking vacation rentals and flights much later.

Calamari and prawns over a bed of stir fried vegetables, a wonderful meal made by the two cooks that we both enjoy.
Today, we'll prepare yet another batch of "paperwork" for the third of our four required visa applications.  We can't wait to be done with this stuff to be able to go back to our previous level of mindless drivel as we continue to search our surroundings for more "small things" photo ops.

May your day present you with "small things" you find interesting!
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Photo from one year ago today, June 3, 2015:
The waterfall in a park in Tahiti we visited with our friends, a popular tourist attraction.  For more Tahiti photos, please click here.

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