Arrived early to the Captain’s lair this morning – a lot on – sorting those boards and that ceremony at Benoa. This means running the gauntlet of Bali’s abominable traffic – a hellish nightmare of sweat-ridden bottlenecks and 3rd world misery.
But that’s later…
Today marks a critical step… the wonder-boards must re-enter the ‘Temple of Germania’ to be glassed. As Tim loads his 6’5 (work in progress)… the Captain snares the passenger seat. Crawling through a hot suburban maze of concrete… we arrive to the maestro’s abode. Nyoman stands silent… smiling like a Balinese teddy bear.. all dressed in his black work gear – that shiny name tag – those polished shoes. Inside we march… as the weapons are meticulously layed out. There’s a moment of silent awe… our expressions bring Nyoman pleasure… his eyes sparkle with pride – the artwork’s surpassed all expectation. I hand Nyoman the photo of Kim (as promised)… he places it proudly on the mantel. There’s a quick photo shoot… some cackles & banter.. the boards are wrapped and loaded. Then starts the arduous business of departure. Every speed hump – every pot hole – a potential land mine… completely capable of obliterating our cargo. Slow and steady – no rush – this is Bali.
Later at the Berlin wall – we find the gates sealed. Wayan unlocks the bolt and wrestles a frothing mongrel. The howling mutt is restrained. The Captain explains it’s recovering from a bout of rabies – I check the chain’s length before exiting the vehicle. The crystal ships are nervously cradled from car to the glassing bay. The smell of fiberglass and resin pervade – it’s a comforting essence. The man-ager appears… smiling through his grey beard – he welcomes with sedated eyes – another veteran of island life. The men chit-chat.. confirm the specs… there’s more admiration for Nyoman’s artistry.
Suddenly… all is very quiet – only whispers. The board is nestled in the factory’s cradle – safe and secure. All that remains is the final transformation – that metamorphosis… from prime flesh – to pure fantasy.
The final chapter coming soon..