We all agreed that among the wonderful treats we had experienced in Bali, our 3- hour walk through a community of rice paddy fields was the highlight. We had a perfect day for the stroll (my ankle was even cooperative by now) and all of us were eager for the anticipated experience. The fields were terraced along a low hillside ringed round with mountains and volcanoes topped with wispy clouds. Languorous palm fronds fluttered lazily in the slight breezes and they sprouted up unexpectedly along the paths, in the fields and on the mountainsides. There were Hindu banners streaming across the fields to deter the birds from feasting too soon on the rice kernels. An ingenious system of noisemaking complemented the flapping banners in this alternative to traditional scarecrows. Tin cans were attached to windmill like sails which pulled strings as they moved in the wind and caused pebbles or metal to rattle inside the cans. The noise was more tinkling than harsh and added to the serene morning atmosphere.
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