My trip to Bali
"I had a big desire to work in a social project to do something good." With this demand Laura decided to come to Bali and support our teaching project in Ubud. Learn more about Laura's experiences in Bali and her daily tasks.
My first impressions
Before I came to Bali I was very excited and had a big desire to work in social project and do something good. In Bali I could realize this desire and I also made the experience to live in another culture and community. My trip to Bali started with my arrival at the Ngurah Rai airport, where I was picked up and driven to my new home for the next four weeks. In Kengetan I was welcomed by the family of Ibu Agung and at my first day I directly realized how friendly, warm, keen and hospitable the Balinese people are.
Small disappointment in the beginning...
Afterwards it was not bad but at the moment there when Ibu Agungs sister told me that in my first two weeks there weren’t school because of the holidays for the holy, Hindu celebration of Galungan and Kuningan, I was a bit disappointed because the result was that I only worked two weeks in the primary school of Ibu Agung and I joined her in the after school projects, which were called Bimbel for only three weeks.
...which was not too bad in the end
Therefor I used my first two weeks to meet the other volunteers from the partner orgnaization and I made a lot of trips to see the beautiful places of Bali. Andrea, a volunteer from another school, and I made a trip in the north to see the Gitgit Twin Waterfall and the Danau Bratan. At the weekend we stayed in Kuta and visited the Uluwatu Temple and the beautiful Padang Padang Beach. During the whole time Ibu Agung and I stayed always in contact and she was very keen about my well-being. She welcomed and integrated me in her family and I felt well and was happy that we got well with each other.
In my second week in Bali the Bimbel started. Bimbel is the short form of Bimbingan Belajar and Ibu Agung picked me up every time and we drove together to the different schools where we taught different classes in the afternoon. There I always met very friendly, open and motivated pupils in the class where I taught them English. Ibu Agung and I worked together and I really loved to teach the kids because they were very motivated and we had a lot of fun together. In the Bimbel I also met very nice teacher who were always happy about the support in their English classes.
My work in the school
After this week my work in the primary school of Ibu Agung started. At my first day I was a bit nervous but when I arrived at school, I was friendly welcomed and all pupils were so nice and happy that I stayed at their school for a few weeks. Also the teachers welcomed me very friendly at their school and also in the teachers room. I always taught the third Grade in English and also the fifth and sixth Grade. The pupils were always very motivated but sometimes we had some difficulty with our language because their English were not so advanced, but the kids in the primary school are very young and they begin to learn English there but mostly it worked and we understood each other. Sometimes there were special school days like the competition day, where the pupils competed against each other in the discipline of running, sack race and running with a bottle of water on their head or the cleaning day. There the pupils cleaned and tidied up the whole school. Every class room, the teachers room, the working center and also the schoolyard were got out of the rubbish which I could find all over the schoolyard because the Balinese people have not really a relevance to the rubbish and to the waste disposal. After this day the school looked so good and cleaned. On Friday they had a temple ceremony in the morning which I was allowed to join. At this morning I met Ibu Agung at her house to wear the traditional clothes for the temple. We went there together and I joined the whole ceremony where the teachers and pupils prayed together. It was amazing for me to see how disciplined the kids are in the temple and also to be part of this community.
Thank you, Ibu Agung!
During my whole time in Bali I felt very well and I was very happy to be there. I think mostly because of Ibu Agung. I am so thankful to meet her and to be part of her family during the whole four weeks. She always invited me to her house, to different trips in her environment like the traditional market in Sukawati, to drive along the fields, to visit the waterfall and also to a big temple ceremony in her village. I felt excited before the big ceremony but when Ibu Agung and me arrived there I realized that I had not to be nervous because all people of the village welcomed me so friendly in their temple. Nobody looked at me in stupid way, every body smiled at me and in their eyes and their expression I saw that I was welcomed there. I also joined their prayer and I am really happy that I was allowed to follow their ceremony.
At the end of my time I am happy about my experience in Bali and about my work there and also about my experience to live in the Hindu culture and community. I am also very proud that I stayed there the whole four weeks in a lower standard than we have in Germany and during this time you also recognize if you really live the life you want to live or not. For me it was the best experience I ever made and I will come back to Bali to visit Ibu Agung and also to see the places which I could not see during my four weeks in Bali.