Today is Kuningan in Ubud, Bali, which is the last day of the 10 day holiday beginning on Galungan when the gods descend and are present. Today the gods leave Bali.
The roads are decorated, shrines are covered in glorious textiles and statues are dressed.
The Balinese pray at their temples and shrines. It’s an important and happy day.
Murni’s Warung was closed as the Balinese staff are all too busy to work. So I left Murni’s Houses to walk into town for lunch. I looked back at the large Balinese gate and admired the penjor, the large bamboo pole, which is symbolic on many levels, and the offerings stuffed into the niches on either side of the door.
Walking down the main street I photographed a few shrines and the shop where I’ve often bought udeng, the Balinese headdress for men, from the old lady, who also sells hats. She’s always smiling. She had a rather nice double shrine.
A little further down shop girls were chatting happily as a lady went about her business carrying a plastic container on her head.
Throughout this period Barongs parade along the streets, always accompanied by umbrellas and music.
I mentioned in an earlier post that there are different types of Barong. This one is the pig Barong.
I decided to follow it and soon it stopped in front of a house and danced bringing good luck to the family who lived there.
I spotted a Balinese girl photographing me. We became friends and she invited me into her home to see her family temple and meet the family. Photography is like that.
The family temple was a beautiful one with magnificently decorated shrines.
But better than that there were several generations of welcoming people.
The youngest member was intrigued to see a large, ungainly foreigner wander in.
His sister was more comfortable with the intruder and slightly bemused.
His aunt had eyes that looked right through you and melted your heart.
His mother was proud and smiley.
His grandmother had a wonderful, wise and kindly face.
Her friend was sitting beside her.
There’s more about Galungan, Kuningan and Barongs in Secrets of Bali.
There are more photographs on www.jonathaninbali.com
- The Barongs of Bali (murnisbali.wordpress.com)