Come as Scottish as You Like
Tickets Now on Sale for Robert Burns Night Saturday, January 25, 2014 at Bali Dynasty Resort.
(12/9/2013) Continuing a worldwide tradition than spans more than 250 years, the birth day and life of Scotland’s most famous poet Robert Burns (1759-1796) will be celebrated in Bali on Saturday, January 25, 2014 at the Bali Dynasty Resort in South Kuta.
As similar gatherings are convened on that date in Scotland and in every corner of the globe – the Bali “Burns Night” will be a gala celebration of the life, poems and music of the fabled Scottish bard Robert Burns who was born in Scotland on January 25, 1759.
While all are welcome – be they Scottish or merely “Brave Hearted” – seating is limited and early booking is recommended. Australian holidaymakers are more than welcome to join the festivites.
The evening will begin with pre-dinner drinks following by the traditional fare of:
Cock a Leekie Soup
Neeps and Tatties
Rare Scottish Rib of Beef with trimmings and seasonal vegetables
Hot Sticky Toffee Pudding
Free-flow beer and wine will accompany the dinner.
And, of course, guests are most welcome to dress as “Scottish as they like.”
Max Kay - a Famous Scottish Entertainer and also a Western Australian Icon will be on hand serving as Master of ceremonies for the evening. Max has appeared all over the world, including Canada and Carnegie Hall in the U.S.A..
With an extensive background in the performing arts and the organization of many Burns nights to his credit, Max will lead the evening of Scottish poetry and music, aided by members of the Scottish Diaspora living and vacationing in Bali.
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Max was born in Scotland and arrived in Perth in 1967. In 1976 he opened the Civic Theatre in Inglewood and wrote, produced, and performed his own shows. He closed the theatre in 2001 to pursue other interests including becoming a City of Perth Councilor.
In 2001 Max was awarded the WA Citizen of the Year for the Arts Culture and Entertainment category, while in January 2003 he was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for services to the entertainment industry and for charitable works. He is the National Trust (WA Branch) President and is also on the Board of Swan Bells Foundation, the St Bartholomew’s Foundation and Curtin Radio 100.1.
In keeping with Scottish tradition, guests are encouraged to wear the plaid of their clan while enjoying authentic bagpipe music, Scottish song, Scottish cuisine and Scottish poetry. The Selkrik Grace will be offered, followed by the mandatory “address to the Haggis” celebrating the quintessential Scottish dish that will enters the room with much fanfare and accompanying music provided by a Scottish piper.
Following a time-honored ritual, there will be toasts, tributes, Burn’s songs and no small amount of humor to complement what promises to be a memorable evening.
Tickets for the evening cost Rp. 850,000 net (US$72) which covers cocktails, dinner and free flow beer and wine.
Select Scotch Whiskeys will also be available from a cash bar.
A 10% discount is available for advance purchasers of a table of ten.
The Bali Dynasty Resort is also offering special accommodation rates for those wishing to stay the Resort in connection with Robert Burns Night.
The Opposite of Progress is Congress
Denpasar Still Unable to Collect Foreign Workers Training Fee Due to Inaction by Lawmakers
(12/8/2013) The plan by the Social Service and Manpower Department for Bali’s capital of Denpasar (Dinsosnaker) to start charging foreign workers a US$100 per month training fee (IMTA) beginning in January 2013 is threatened by further delay.
Draft legislation that would allow the fee once paid to Jakarta to be now paid to the regional administration has yet to be ratified. For this reason, Dinsosnaker is calling on legislators to formally approve the legislation that has already been discussed and reviewed at length by lawmakers.
The head of Dinsosnaker-Denpasar, I Made Erwin Suryadarma Sena, said on Tuesday, December 3, 2013, the threat of being unable to start charging the foreign workers training fee in January remains very real as there is no legal basis to charge the fee without supporting legislation.
Erwin said that in 2011-2012 between 200-300 foreign workers held formal working permits. This would equate to US$360,000 in annual training fees paid to the Denpasar government once the necessary legislation is enacted.
The right to decentralize the US$100 a month fee from Jakarta to regional collection was granted in Government Regulation (PP No. 97) of 2012.
Regional governments have been entitled to collect this amount since January 2013, but because of a failure to enact empowering local regulations the fee remains uncollected.
The IMTA fee is purportedly to be used to fund skill training for Indonesian workers.
How to Keep Them Down on the Farm?
Decadal Survey of Bali Agriculture Shows Rapidly Disappearing Agricultural Sector in Bali
(12/8/2013) The Bali Bureau of Statistics (BPS-Bali) have release their 2013 census for agriculture revealing some startling results.
In the census, undertake once every 10 years, it was revealed that the number of agricultural households decreased by 84,161 from the last census.
Households depending on agricultural enterprises in Bali now stand at 408,233, down from the 492,394 households recorded in 2003
The head of BPS-Bali, Gede Suarsa said the biggest decline occurred among agriculturalists working with livestock suffering a decline of 78,913.
The smallest decline was 3,851 in the sub-sector for fish farming.
Suarsa said the large decline in livestock raising happened because of the high prices currently being paid for farm animals and the change in the use of farmlands to other purposes that have caused many to sell their land holdings.
The 2013 agricultural census represents the 6th time the survey was undertaken by BPS-Bali since 1963.
The latest Bali survey shows 315,747 families still involved in livestock breeding, 238,484 families in cash crop agriculture, and 220,893 families undertaking plantation agriculture.
Professor I Wayan Windia of the Bali’s Udayana University blames the rapid decline in Bali’s agricultural sector on the change in land usage and the fact that working is farming was no longer considered profitable.
Professor Windia estimates 1,000 hectares of farming land is lost each year to other pursuits in Bali.
Pay as You Come
Bali by the Numbers: Visa-on-Arrival Collection Increase 13.3% in Q3 2013
(12/8/2013) The Bali Post reports that fees collected for Visa-On-Arrival (VOA) in Bali during the third-quarter of 2013 totaled US$18.7 million, increasing 15.14% over the amount collected in the second-quarter of 2013.
Citizen of a large number of countries are able to purchase a visa-on-arrival valid for 30-days use upon arriving in Bali and paying a US$25 fee. Visitors from certain select countries, including ASEAN member states, are exempted from obtaining a VOA.
A report published by Bank Indonesia states that VOA receipts increased 13.31% during Q-3 2013 when compared to the same quarter in 2012.
On a cumulative basis from January – September 2013 Bali welcomed record 2.4 million foreign tourists.
Blow into the Tube
Indonesia Trialing Roadside Breath Analysis in Order to Reduce Drunk Driving
(12/8/2013) The Indonesian Police have commenced using roadside breathalyzer testing in Jakarta and Central Java in order to reduce the growing number of traffic accidents linked to alcohol consumption.
Using the state-of-the-art Dräger Alcotest® 7510 the Indonesian police are able to conduct roadside evidential breath testing that conforms to the highest international standards.
The head of the Metro Jaya Traffic Police in Jakarta, Hindarsono, supervised the first use of the equipment on Saturday, December 8, 2013, when the new breath testers were deployed in three separate areas of Jakarta.
Trial testing of the equipment is also being undertaken in Central Java.
In the first night of active deployments of testing 3 drivers were netted during 3 hours trial and released because the evidence collected is still being studied by the Indonesian law enforcement and judicial community.
Bali is carefully monitoring whether or not the police will formalize the use of the Dräger Alcotest® 7510 and extend it use to other locations, such as Bali, where drunk driving is a growing problem.
Sex and Drug Parties in Bali?
Bali Attorney Alleges Event Organizer Providing Drug and Sex Parties for Foreign Tourist
(12/8/2013) A Bali-based lawyer who has worked on many high-profile drug cases in Bali has painted a sordid picture of illicit sex and narcotics on the Island.
In news carried in The Bali Post and DenPost, well-known attorney H.M. Rifan told a discussion group on narcotics held in Bali on Wednesday, December 4, 2013, that an illegal Event Organizer (EO) in Bali prepares narcotics parties in local villas in Nusa Dua replete with a range of sex services.
He said remote villas in Nusa Dua, Uluwatu and Pecatu located on cliffs and ravines are used for the drug and sex parties.
At the same discussion, a representative of the Bali office of the Anti-Narcotics Agency (BNN), estimated that drug abusers in Bali number more than 50,000 with perhaps 20,000 of that total involved in dealing drugs.
BNN extrapolates that Bali consumes a minimum of 7 kilograms of illegal drugs each day.
Authorities worry that the combination of illegal drugs and recreational sex will have the additional negative effect of increasing the rates of HIV/AIDS infections in Bali.
Police officers from the Narcotics Division of the Bali Police expressed surprise at Rivan’s report, promising to investigate his allegations further. Wayan Tantra of the Narcotics Division of the Bali Police warned that such investigations would take time as those organizing such activities select places that are difficult for police to detect their criminal activities.
Separately, the chief of the Bali Tourism Agency Kadispar), Ida Bagus Kade Subhisku, said that the alleged drug activities of illegal EO could not be tolerated and would be fully investigated. He said that his office would be coordinating with police, immigration and other agencies to shut down the alleged illegal Event Organizers in Bali organizing sex and drug themed activities.
He told Bisnis Bali that his office did not yet know about the alleged EO organizing drug and sex parties. He said the report was still a rumor and must be thoroughly checked for its accuracy.
Never Too Late to Say ‘Thanks’
Posthumous National Honors for Two Ubud Pioneers of Culture and the Arts
(12/8/2013) The Ministry of Tourism and the Creative Economy has presented an Anugerah Adikarya Award posthumously to two Bali-based artists.
Recognized for their contributions to the arts were Tjokorda Gde Agung Sukawati and Walter Spies, making them the first two Bali residents to be so recognized.
As reported by Bali Daily, the Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy Mari Elka Pangestu announced the two awards.
The former royal regent of Ubud, Tjokorda Gde Agung Sukawati extended a welcome mat to Ubud for artists, both foreign and domestic, paving the way for the establishment of the Pita Maha movement in 1936. The Pita Maha is widely credited with acting as the early catalyst for Bali’s place as a center for the arts.
The son of Tjokorda Gde Agung Sukawati, Tjokorda Gde Agung Sukawati (Cok Ace) who is the head of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI-Bali) and the former regent of Gianyar, remembers his Father’s keen love of the arts and his readiness to provide work space for visiting artists such as Dutch painter Rudolf Bonnet, Spanish painter Antonio Blanco and German painter Walter Spies. ??
Together with Spies and Bonnet, the elder Sukawati,who died in 1978, established the Pita Maha that became the point of inspiration for many Balinese artists, including the legendary artist and architect I Gusti Nyoman Lempad.
Cok Ace’s Father also built Bali’s first museum of art – Puri Lukisan – that survives and prospers to this day together with its collection of classical Balinese paintings.
The other recipient of the award was German Walter Spies who died as a prisoner-of-war when a Japanese bomb sank the vessel carrying him to Ceylon in 1942. During the 1930s, Spies redefined painting and, to some degree, the performing arts in Bali. He influenced young artists through Pita Maha, made films on Bali and co-authored a compendium on Balinese dance and drama still valued as a reference book to this day.
Putting on the Ritz
Ritz-Carlton to Open in Ubud in 2015
(12/8/2013) The Ritz-Carlton brand will soon be returning to Bali with the announcement from the The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company that they will open in a new property in Ubud in mid-2015.
The Ritz-Carlton Reserve will reportedly be located along the banks of the Ayung River, near terraced rice fields and village temples.
Herve Humler, President and COO of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company said: "We are delighted to announce another exclusive Reserve project to the hand-selected portfolio. Bali is a well-established destination for luxury travelers and we are confident that our resort in Ubud will raise the bar for style, service, and quality in the area. The Ritz-Carlton Reserve offers guests a contemporary interpretation of the local lifestyle and culture. The concept is simple, yet exudes style and luxurious levels of comfort. The resorts provide a complete escape to the unexpected; a private, exclusive leisure experience that blends unique elements of the local culture, history, and heritage with intuitive individual service, exquisite indigenous design, casual ambience and respect for the surrounding environment."
To Serve and Protect
Bali Governor Reminds Civil Servants to Remain Neutral During Coming Legislative Elections
(12/6/2013) Bali’s governor Made Mangku Pastika reminded the province's civil servants to safeguard their neutrality during the coming 2014 legislative elections in Bali.
As reported by the State News Agency Antara, Pastika said at the 42nd anniversary of the Indonesian Civil Service (Korpri) on Friday, December 6, 2013: “The members of the civil service corps must be steadfast in their dedication to the public and the Country. They cannot take sides; they must remain neutral.”
The governor said that in order that the 2014 elections can select the very best representatives, the neutrality of Korpri is of the utmost importance.
Reflecting on the May 2013 governor’s race in Bali, Pastika said he hope government employees would maintain their neutrality.
Reminding Bali’s civil servants that they are required as Korpri members to always remain just and neutral in the performance of their duties, Pastika also read prepared comments from Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono echoing the call for political neutrality and execution of responsibilities free of favor or influence from political interests.
Using the occasion of the anniversary of the civil service corps, Pastika also reminded government workers to continually enhance their professionalism in order that the public can experience the benefits of a reformed bureaucracy in Indonesia.
That bureaucracy, said Pastika, must be clean, effective, transparent, and accountable while undertaking the building an anti-corruption culture.
The mass anniversary assembly of civil servants usually held at the Margarana Puputan Field in Denpasar was moved to the assembly hall (Wantilan) of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) due to heaving rainfall.
The High and Mighty
Asian Development Bank Finances Power Crossing Cables to Supply Bali’s Electrical Deficit
(12/6/2013) The Jakarta Globe reports that The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has loaned $224 million to improve the Java-Bali power grid. The loan, made to the State Power Board (PLN), will increase the standby power much needed by the industrial, commercial and tourism sectors in Bali.
Aruna Wanniachi of the ADB sees a dependable power supply as important to job creation, particularly for low-income groups.
Bali currently has an electrification rate of only 69%.
The loan will finance a 220-kilometer long overhead crossing cable carrying 200 megawatts in power via lines suspended on what the ADB says will be the world’s tallest power pylons across the straits between Java and Bali.
The coats of the project is put at $410 million financed by the loan, $25 million from the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund (AIF), and US$161 million from the central government.
Power is now brought to Bali by two submarine cables carrying 200 megawatts. The number and capacity of undersea cables between Java and Bali will be doubled by 2014 with the addition of two more underwater cables.
A Missed Departure, A Lifetime in Return
Man Denied Boarding on Pan Am 812 on April 22, 1974 Remembers the 107 Passengers Who Died on a Hillside in North Bali
(12/9/2013) April 22, 2014 will mark the 40th anniversary of a tragic air crash in Bali that killed the 107 passengers and crew when a Pan Am jet crashed into a hillside in North Bali at about 11:30 pm.
Pan Am 812 was flying from Hong Kong to Bali, an intermediate stop for the Boeing 707-321B destined for Sydney, Australia
Investigators eventually concluded that the plane, inbound for a landing on runway 090 at Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport, was the victim of pilot error and flight instrument failure. The plane was cleared by Bali Flight Control to descend to 10,000 feet. Later, 52-year-old Captain Donald Zinke and First Officer John Schroeder, seeing an automatic direction finder needle swing, turned, believing they were inbound on the Bali runway, and requested permission to descend on a bearing for Bali’s active runway.
The last message from the pilot-in-command suggested the cockpit was disoriented with Schoeder asking, “Hey - Tower, what is your visibility out there now?"
That was the last communication from the aircraft heard by Bali Tower who were repeatedly broadcasting the unanswered messages of "Clipper eight one two, Bali Tower" and "Clipper eight one two, Bali Tower, how do you read."
Pan Am 812 had plowed into a remote hillside in North Bali, 37 kilometers Northwest of the airport
Today, a dignified and serene monument bearing all the names of the 107 who died from 11 countries sits amidst a clump of trees on the bank of the Ayung River in Denpasar, just 5-10 minutes from the busy Jalan Ngurah Bypass in Padang Galak.
Past coverage by balidiscovery.com of the tragic crash occasionally provokes emails from people who remember the crash or who had friends and relatives who died in the accident.
None, however, are more interesting than the communication we recently received from a 55-year-old Australian, John Plummer, living on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast with his wife and 4 children.
Plummer, who works as a consultant to the oil and gas industry, has a unique perspective and vivid memories of crash of Pan Am 812.
15-years old at the time of the crash, John Plummer was enjoying an Easter holiday with an Aunt in Hong Kong, taking a break from The King’s School in Sydney where he was boarder. Preparing to fly home on as a member of Cathay Pacific airline staff family (his Father worked for Cathay) and using a concessional ticket, he presented himself at the stand-by desk for the Pan Am flight that would take him back to Sydney via Bali.
However, because Pan Am 812 was fully booked, young Plummer was denied boarding, sent home and told to try again the following day.
Disappointed at not to being able to fly back to Sydney, young John returned to his Aunt’s home and a warm bed only to wake the following morning to read of the disaster in the South China Morning Post and learn that the all the people with whom he shared the boarding lounge in Hong Kong's airport had died during the night.
Plummer relates that he has suffered “survivor's grief” over the intervening years, haunted by the knowledge of how narrowly he escaped death.
In the early 1980s, as a young man in his 20s, John Plummer visited Bali and traveled to the mountainside where the Pan Am aircraft crashed. There he found a hot springs where he lingered, gazing a mountain that nearly became his grave.
He says he still remembers all the faces of his fellow passengers checking into the flight in Hong Kong.
John Plummer has seldom spoken of the incident with friends and families but would now be interested to hear from fellow survivors, families of survivors and those, like himself, who failed to board the flight in Hong Kong or Bali.
He is also asking if some sort of memorial service is planned on the 40th anniversary of the crash in Bali that he and surviving friends and relativescould attend.
Shown on Balidiscovery.com are pictures of John Plummer in 1974 and today with his family.
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