Thursday, May 20, 2010

Running in Rice Fields

Mark and I found the most amazing run this morning. The hotel staff recommended a run through the rice fields in Ubud. About 3 miles. We ran through a neighbourhood of the usual B&B's and art galleries and then the road narrowed to a track and then to a muddy lane and we suddenly rose up into the rice paddies. we were running along the dikes that separate the rice fields, past coco palms and small compounds. Ducks were working eating bugs and weeds in the flooded fields and leaving their fertilizer behind them. Cocks crowing, We ran up one irrigatin system and then down another and could see the subak system at work. It reminded me of a similar system in Colorado created by the Spanish, but on a much more sophisticated level.
The run was a real mixture of pre-lapserian rural idyll and post-modern responses to globalization. About half way through we met a young man tending an art gallery, yes, an art gallery in the middle of a rice field! But he was also watching his water alarm a simple water balance that continuously filled and emptied and rose and fell, hitting a bamboo pole as it did so The regular "thock" notified the farmer that the water was still running (and thus that his neighbour had not cut off this water supply yet.) We also saw a man shinning up a coco palm after the ripe coconuts above and small fields of mustard greens and soy beans amid the rice.

It ws a run I will always treasure, but as Hoyt said, in ten years time those fields will probably all be art galleries. bali is a strange experience.

1 comment:

Charlene said...

Love your descriptions. If you see the D'Omah hotel sign, that's where Hoyt and I lived for two months last year...say hi to the ducks and roosters for me. The roosters were often our alarm clocks.