Bali, Hi - 2007

there we would encounter a little garden patch cut out of the paddy field. In these we saw water spinach growing, as well as long beans and sweet potatoes. These farmers do not waste much land on anything not productive. Swallows dove and rose above the fields chasing the many insects everywhere in the air above the rice plants. We even were lucky enough to see rice dogs and cats doing their jobs of slithering through the closely planted rice to chase mice and rats and snakes. Some workers were in the fields as well, but not many because the rice was really not quite ready for harvesting. We learned that the women do the harvesting while the men do the planting and the threshing. Both sexes look after the irrigation ditches and insure the proper amounts of water during the growing seasons. Men and women both drive the ubiquitous scooters but more men appeared to ridebikes.

There were some motorcycles roaring down this rice paddy highway, mostly with young men astride them. The road was amazingly busy on such a peaceful and warm day. It’s a multiuse pathway for sure. Our group “shot” everything in sight and must have accumulated hundreds of pictures to process when they got home. It made me glad that I am not a photographer. The butterflies alone were too beautiful to be skipped and the formidable spiders were also worthy of memorialization in pixels. Many of the insects were new to us so they too needed to be “captured” for later study. The rice-paddy walk was a multi-sense experience in every way: sights, sounds, smells, touch and even taste when we tried a path-side banana. We loved every step of the way.

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