My first Christmas away from home was always going to be different. No usual suspects like presents, a Christmas tree, or mum and dad. However nothing could have prepared me for the most random, sickening, unfortunate, but surprisingly satisfying Christmas I’ve ever had, and probably ever will.
It went down in Bali, Indonesia. My sister, our friend and I have been travelling around the island. We decided to head to the beach to swim Christmas day away, so we hopped on our trusty rented scooters and set off.
Two minutes down the busy road a man yelled through his helmet “your wallet fell down!!” I pulled over and sure enough my wallet wasn’t in my pocket anymore. We spent the next half an hour searching the road surface for it, but considering we were in an area where there were kid-beggars it didn’t seem likely. Whoever found it needed the money more than me.
We changed route to the police station so we could call my bank and cancel my cards. After filing a police report I got a big fat NO when I asked for a phone. Come to think of it I don’t know why I thought I’d be looked after, it’s Christmas day and I’m some silly tourist who’s stupidly dropped his wallet. Hardly a priority.
So we press on to search for a phone store. Only thing is it’s now pouring with rain. This ain’t no sprinkle. I mean torrential, violent, flash-flood kind of rain. So our scooter-search for a phone store was sketchy to say the least. We arrive at one unscathed, try shake ourselves dry before entering, and eventually we sorted the cards. No money stolen which was a nice bonus.
We had worked up an appetite by now, but our wild goose chase brought us to a dense, un-touristy part of town. We stopped at a local restaurant; I had no idea what I ordered but I ended up with this rice, seafood, and chicken pile. By chicken I mean chicken bones, some big, some small, all of them sharp and none of them belonging in food. The seafood was these tiny black prawns that looked like they’d been on a shelf for a week or two. It costed $1 so we got what we paid for.
Too hungry to think we downed our attempted meals. While our stomachs thought about digesting, we convinced ourselves it was a bad choice and we’d just given ourselves food poisoning. Whether we did or didn’t we will never know because when we got home, the three of us tactically vomited up our local chicken bone cuisine. It was hard work, but the three of us standing in the garden wrenching was plenty disgusting so we got rid of it all.
We eventually went out to a wonderful restaurant and had a great dinner as we reflected on the strangest Christmas ever. Thing is, out loud it sounds shithouse as, with the lost wallet, torrential rain, and garden vomiting etc. However besides a brief negative moment mourning the loss of my wallet, the rest of the day had this happy-go-lucky adventure vibe to it. It was fun eating at a dodgy restaurant. It was hilarious laughing about how we all just spewed our guts out although we maybe didn’t need to. It goes to show attitude is everything, and Christmas ain’t Christmas until you feel like throwing up.