Category Archives: Feature

Expat Recruitment Bali Style By Ines Wynn

With strict laws governing expat employment and the expensive work permit process it involves, getting a job in Bali or Indonesia is fraught with challenges. Yet, many expats find gainful employment, some legally, some not. How do they go about it?  There are a few recruitment agencies with dream job postings and a mission to help qualified candidates navigate the choppy waters. There is also a sort of underground network that may steer the hopefuls to a successful ending. What advice do they have for the novice or jaded job seeker? First the rules – To work legally in Bali, one absolutely ... [ Read More ]

Move over Moringa Make room for Spirulina By Ines Wynn

Remember the spirulina craze from the 70s and 80s? Yep, that tasteless, motley green powder we mixed with water and choked down because it “was healthy and good for you”? Today it is enjoying a rebirth as one of the most talked about superfoods.  Amidst all the hoopla about superfoods it is taking a prominent place with the recognition that it is, in fact, the most nutrient dense food on the planet because of all the nutrients, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and proteins it contains. The United Nations and the World Health Organization have labeled spirulina a complete food because it contains all ... [ Read More ]

Little Gladiators: Bali’s Cricket Fights

Tajen jangkrik, or Balinese cricket fighting, is an ardent island-wide hobby enjoyed by villagers and city folk during the dry season in Bali, a splendid way for Balinese to spend an idle afternoon, chat with neighbors, boast about their champion crickets and enjoy all the noise and excitement of the fray. David Attenborough, Colin McPhee and many other scholars and celebrities have written about Bali’s cricket fights. Raffles noted in his History of Java: “The Balinese are strangers to the vices of drunkenness, libertinism, and conjugal infidelity: their predominant passions are gaming. In these amusements, all the vehemence and energy of ... [ Read More ]


Can you imagine having a boss that demands that you work seven days week, making up to forty trips a day traveling eight kilometers to and from hundreds of workstations? And not getting paid to provide people with fruit, vegetables, coffee, seeds, nuts, cocoa, cotton and oils? That’s exactly what a queen bee demands of her workers. She also supplies millions of dollars of agricultural services each year to humankind. Without the queen bee and her workers humans would soon run out of food. Albert Einstein said many years ago, “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, ... [ Read More ]

The Wonder Women of Indonesia

At first the novel ready-to-use water purifiers, portable solar lights and efficient low-tech stoves were met with rejection after rejection in the remote dirt poor communities of eastern Indonesia. People refused to drink unboiled water or take the risk of their houses burning down. Heads of households had already been burnt by cheap Chinese solar lamps from itinerant Makassarese traders that had malfunctioned after only a few weeks. But all that soon changed. You may not think that simple technologies would make that much of a difference, but there was a time not so long ago when – after the sun set and ... [ Read More ]

Art Basel and Beyond By Renee Melchert Thorpe

  Regional art lovers flocked to Hong Kong for Art Month (now every March).  With its virtually free port, state-of-the-art logistics, and service-oriented banking, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) has become the perfect art marketplace for Asia. Art Basel Hong Kong, March 23-25, comprised two stories of the HKCEC exhibition center: gallery after gallery from 242 exhibitors from 24 countries who brought their most visually dazzling or most bankable names. Bali’s own blue chip painter Ashley Bickerton had pride of place in Ganesha Gallery’s booth, with a very decorative Mangu Putra painting nearby. There were panel discussions and a mini ... [ Read More ]


When I went to university to study to become a teacher, it was compulsory to study a unit called Special Education where the novice teacher learned all the possible problems a young person might have with learning and behavioral difficulties on the Autism Spectrum and how we might go about dealing with it in the classroom. It was an impossible proposal that a fresh, inexperienced student teacher might learn practical skills from these intellectual theories but mandatory all the same. In reality, during those first few years as a teacher, I became extremely nervous when I saw a teenager being ... [ Read More ]

GM Tales and Concierge Encounters By Ines Wynn

The people who manage big hotel properties and attend to the quirks and eccentricities of their guests have many tales to tell. From unusual, extravagant, barely legitimate (or not) requests to questionable, weird and outrageous behaviors, the sky is not even the limit for the yarns they can spin and the anecdotes they can dish up.   But they are discrete and therefore a few of the story tellers in this article declined to be identified to protect the good name of the properties they represent. Some names are fictitious but the stories are real.Enjoy! Jerry1 is an affable American who has worked in ... [ Read More ]


Singapore is notorious as one of the most expensive cities in the world, a place where a pot of tea could set you back about SGD9.00 and the original Singapore Sling at Raffle’s Long Bar is a whopping SGD31.00 a drink. We three mature-aged ladies from Bali, two Australians and a Canadian, decided to put the theory to the test during a week’s visit to the world’s only island city-state. We envisioned dollars haemorrhaging from our wallets in stacks of hundreds, flying into the hands of hoteliers, clothiers, restaurateurs and taxi drivers. But did it have to be like that, we ... [ Read More ]

Oz Bali, Part 2: Prominent Australians of Bali

Few Australians were among Bali’s expatriate community in the pre-war years, but starting in the 1960s the island became a popular stopover for young Australians setting out on the long overland hippy trail between Australia and Europe. Those early sojourners were followed by a diverse company of Australians seeking adventure, an exotic cultural experience, the low cost of living, the easy goinglifestyle or attracted by business opportunities. Donald Friend was the first illustrious Australian to take up residence in Bali in 1968. Controversial and passionate, this talented artist of homoerotica created his own universe in the Batu Jimbar community of Sanur. ... [ Read More ]