Meeting Gerry in Ubud


Finally got to meet Gerry Williams in Ubud on Sunday. Gerry is the owner and impetus behind BaliEats.com, probably the best restaurant guide here in Bali.

http://www.BaliEats.com

He’s not going to link to us but that’s okay, he’s still a great guy. During the several months of research I did before coming here he wrote many long e-mails with great information on subjects ranging from money transfer, to immigration to tourism. I look forward to learning more from Gerry and getting to know him, not to mention visiting the restaurants he recommends….I mean it would be a shame not to use all that experience.

Sean and I visited a favourite cafe with him and we both ordered the Nasi Campur ( mixed rice ) which is actually a combo of leftover items so to speak. This is actually one of our favourite dishes.

Gerry had a coffee, probably saving himself for the good stuff after we left.

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An Australian expat living in Ubud after spending years overseas Gerry is a no nonsense guy who goes by the rules and doesn’t not put up with stuff like cops who want bribes.

In a country like Indonesia its important to know where you can cut corners and where you need to get yourself in line.

Balinese local culture dates back hundereds of years and Gerry filled us in on many of the local undercurrents. For example locals form residents groups consisting of 150 families and they pay fees to keep up their temple and land. When one group wants to split off they ‘cut the road’ by digging it up anf making it impossible for people to pass. Land ownership, marriage and death are huge out here. When a man’s father dies he has up to 10 years to save money for the cremation which can cost 100M rp ($11,300 )…. a lot for a farmer or local.

Gerry pointed out that In Ubud the paddies are one block from the main street, even though tourism is huge the traditional life is very strong. Let’s hope it continues.

Sean and I will meet Gerry this week again and look forward to his no nonsense advice.