Nyepi is a "Day of Silence" that is commemorated every Isakawarsa (Saka new year) according to the Balinese calendar. It is a Hindu celebration mainly celebrated in Bali. Nyepi, a public holiday in Indonesia, is a day of silence, fasting and meditation for the Balinese. It was announced at the parade yesterday to remind people, especially tourist, that NO ONE is allowed out on the streets and there is to be no noise (including tvs and radios). The police are out walking the streets to enforce these rules! There is a break given for hotels who are allowed to keep minimal lights on to serve their guests and they are allowed to serve food. Since we are staying in a fully gated villa away from a main road, we were allowed to go outside and use our pool we just had to remind the kids to try to stay as quiet as possible. This wasn't a bad place to spend our Nyepi!! And really, after a couple of busy days of vacationing and travel, a down day we welcomed!
The majority of the people, with mainly hotel staff and hospital staff being an exception, do not work. Since our villa is a small, private villa our staff had the day off. Our food was delivered on foot (no scooters allowed) by a hotel that is just up the way from us. This guy came to deliver us our meals three times today! He explained that the holiday is from 6am today until 6am tomorrow so after tomorrow he will get his time off for his holiday!
Being stuck inside, we did go for a walk outside of our villa in search for ice cream and because we were walking the little scooter alleys and not on the main road we thought we'd be okay. When we approached on hotel looking for ice cream they advised us to not go walking any farther and to go back to our villa! Leave it to us to try to push the rules! One thing we did set up was in room massages to help to pass our time. Again, these ladies had the day off from the spa so they could come to us and they had to come by foot. Brad and I always said we wanted to make sure our kids didn't turn into "Aramco Brats" and then this happens! You'd swear they are getting spoiled! However, we are really just trying to take full advantage of opportunities presented to us and this in-room massage was one of those! An hour massage including a holiday tip was only $10 an hour and we had the three kids split an hour! It was a fun experience for them and I think they are hooked! Owen is asking when is next massage is!
In the middle of the day we saw this amazing sight in the sky! You can only imagine what the people of Bali were thinking about this as they celebrated their New Year! While we didn't do any fasting or meditating, Nyepi for us was a day of relaxing and playing together as a family! We enjoyed it to its fullest and now we are well rested and ready for another full day in Ubud!