Here I was thinking (actually, not just me...my boyfriend too) that we would be clever and decide where to stay once we got to Bali. We feel like idiots now! We should've booked first.
You see, the last time we booked a package with great looking photos ended up being quite disappointing coz the photos didn't reflect the reality of that hotel! We even wished we'd only booked a night but we had already paid for our entire stay so we were locked in. Soooo, on this particular trip we thought it would be 'smart' to get one night anywhere in Bali and then go hunt around for somewhere I REALLY liked for the rest of my stay. As in check it out in person without relying on photos. Oh boy! Wrong move. We should've booked ahead. At least for the first night.
At the airport, we decided to get a simple hotel room anywhere coz we weren't fussed about this first night right? Well, we thought the guy at the airport was joking when he said "everywhere fully booked madam" but he started to get on to the phone anyway looking for hotel rooms, backpacker lodges, you name it, "Nothing madam. So sorry but I keep trying ok?"
I couldn't believe it. "Huh? How can it be?" Only thing avai was a crazy expensive hotel suite in Kuta for 4 people! Just not worth it and I didn't even want to be located in Kuta. It really didn't sink in just how fully booked Bali was. I mean, how hard can it be just to find one room right?
So we decided to book an airport taxi (we thought the airport hotel desk was exaggerating about no rooms. We figured it was just their official panel of hotels that were booked out) but we knew we were in trouble when our taxi man started calling hotels on his own (we didn't even ask him to) but call after call, we heard him say "oh penuh?" We then started driving into random hotels, even backpacker lodges. Same thing. OMG. This was getting kinda ridiculous. Even Sanur which was far away had no rooms!
I couldn't believe it! This has never happened to me. We were homeless on our first night in Bali and running out of options! Well, our super patient (thank God, seriously!) and did I mention kind taxi driver decided to ask a Govt consulate building if there were any more hotels we could check out in that area coz we had gone thru the whole street. You wouldn't believe it! He managed to get them to take us in coz they really pitied us. We'd been roving around for 2 hours with no success.
This building doesn't even house foreigners. It's not a hotel. It's for Sulawesi govt officials or something to that effect. Can u imagine?? They showed us to a spotless bedroom with air con, hot water, its own TV set and 2 beds (all for 50 bucks) but said we must leave in the morning by a certain time and did we want any coffee? I stared stupidly at this sweet man coz I couldn't believe my luck after such a shitty night "yes, thank you so much. That would be lovely" Moment the door closed behind him, I started cracking up.
This was just too funny! And we felt so blessed that we had a roof over our heads for the night. I thanked our taxi man profusely (couldn't have done this without him) and we gave him double whatever the amount was. He didn't even want to put a price on it. Said it was up to us. What a sweetheart!
What has been quite a disaster ever since arriving in Bali has become quite charming. I don't know any tourists who have ever stayed where we're staying tonight, that's for sure hehe. Funny thing is, I thought the taxi driver knew the folks at the "consulate" He didn't! He was running out of options himself and was just trying his luck. It took a local to get other locals to take us in. We r so lucky!! I mean, at the rate we were going, the taxi man himself would've had to bring us back to HIS home lol ;)