Mixed feelings today, sad as this is the last leg of an amazing trip, but happy as we LOVE Bali. It would have been rubbish to have ended with an anti-climax, but we arrived at 8.30pm and got a taxi from outside the airport to Ubud where we were staying for the first 3 nights. It's about an hour from the airport and as we neared Ubud we could tell this was going to be fantastic. There are statues, temples and shrines everywhere and as we drove through Ubud the plethora of bars, restaurants and little arty shops all looked great. The real surprise was the hotel. The driver turned up this tiny little road, which then became a track and then it was pitch black, nothing about at all. I had to give him the hotel details to ring to find out to where on earth the hotel was, which he did (so funny trying to suss out what on earth someone is saying in Balinese) and it turned out we were in the right place. 100 metres further on and we were there, it seemed in the middle of nowhere, but actually it was only a 15 minute walk from town, with the last 5 mins up the track. Although it was dark, we could tell the hotel was going to be amazing and it didn't disappoint. The next morning when we looked out from our balcony the view was paddy fields and a tropical rainforest and down below us, an amazing infinity pool. We didn't really want to leave the hotel but it was sightseeing time so we decided first stop was going to be Monkey Forest. We had been told to buy food from the ladies who sit on the gate outside the forest selling bananas, as the monkeys can be a bit aggressive. This was BAD advice. We had been in the forest for about 2 minutes, Ian clutching a bunch of bananas when he got mugged by a monkey! It whipped most of the bunch of bananas off Ian and ran off! Mugged by a monkey!!! We soon realised that the only way to get left alone by the monkeys was to have no food whatsoever, but this was fine now we had given the remaining couple of bananas to some cute baby monkeys. The monkeys are everywhere, there's loads of them, clambering over the temples, swinging through the trees and harrassing anyone with bananas! We wandered over to a wall to look at the view beyond and I put down my bottle of water....for one whole minute........and a monkey nicked it! He sat down and after a minute of so, worked out how to open it and started drinking it. So we had monkey muggers and monkey water thiefs and a soon after I saw a monkey pick pocket steal someones map out of their trouser pocket. Apart from the big scary monkeys, they were really cute though and it was a lot of fun. That night we went to see one of the traditional dances at the Ubud palace, which was great and spent the next day just enjoying wandering the streets of art and craft shops and the markets of Ubud. Last destination of the trip was 2 nights in Jimbaran in the south very near the airport. Jimbaran is well known for it's seafood warungs which are rows of cafes set up actually on the beach. You can pick your seafood live from the tank and they cook it on a bbq of coconut shells. Our meal was fantastic and the sea actually lapped right up past our table while we were eating and Ians shoe was whisked off into the sea. Him and half a dozen other people all had to rush down to the sea to retrieve their footwear. The hotel gave free pushbike hire, so the following day we went for a bike ride, but not for long as it was sooooooo hot. That night was a trip to Uluwatu temple which is one of the most religious temples in Bali and set high on a cliff top. It's home to lots of monkeys so we kept our water hidden, although one did jump up and clung on to Ian to try to get his water as he'd spotted him hiding it in his bag. They hold a nightly Kecak and Fire Dance at sunset, (the Balinese, not the monkeys, ha ha) which was fanstastic. It's an adaption of an ancient ritual ceremony and unlike other Balinese performances it is not accompanied by musical instruments. Instead a chorus of about seventy men provide the sound effects. The name Kecak comes from the chattering cak-cak sounds of the chorus. It ended in the fire dance and a man dressed as a monkey kicked the fire as part of the performance and accidentally set the sarong of one of the Kecak men alight. He jumped about a bit and put himself out so all was well. Then back to the beach and a this time had a starter of corn on the cob from the beach stalls. It has so much chilli on it we were doing our own fire dance on the beach! A second seafood warung meal later and this was the end of our last night of holiday. It was a great last day and we reflected on what an amazing trip we have had, the fact that we are going home engaged to be married (feels weird) and that we saw Michele and Andy get married which was so lovely and the fact that we are actually looking forward to getting back to work! You may think we are mad, but we really are. Hope I haven't bored everyone too much with my blogging, but it will be lovely to look back on and remember our most fantastic trip ever and the good thing about the end of a trip.........is it means I can plan the next one!!!