People leave you alone in the hotel complex. Guards w/ metal detector wands (presumably just to put on an appearance of security since the bombings- they didn't detect my camera or other people's laptops or anything) keep taxi drivers and assorted rif-raf away. Key-holding rif-raf like myself excluded. The beach is pretty nice too. The surfing is obviously quite good.
Z, the first of my friends, is set to arrive in Bali at 6.30. Around that time I tell the receptionist that a friend will be looking for me before long and ask that they direct him to the pool area. They promptly ignore this message and it's not until I return an hour later to check that I see he's been waiting in the front lobby. Fresh off multiple nearly missed flights and something like 20+ hours of travel time, he's grateful to have a place to leave his bags and shower.
Friend #2, K, is not due to arrive for some time, so Z and I head out for food. We wander past the closed tourist shops and find an open faced building on the corner with a sate trolley out front. In addition to the chicken and beef skewers, we get some rice, a soup of some mysterious meat and 2 large bintangs. We watch a guy enthusiastically pulverize a tomato into a fine pulp and Z asks what he's making. "Chicken" is the reply. I am skeptical.
We're back at the hotel pool when K arrives & manages to find us. While we're exchanging pleasantries about airports and inflight movies and assorted things travelers enjoy discussing, there is a splash behind me in the pool. I turn and see something frantically swimming across the pool. About the time it reaches the other side and impressively scrambles out despite the lip of the pool, I realize it's a big rat chased into the pool by a cat that's watching it from the edge of the pool. Clever rat for swimming, dumb cat for not going to the other side of the pool.
Day 1 of our Indonesian wildlife tour is a success.