So, here we are in Bali on Nyepi day. From 6am there has been no traffic, no noise, no one walking about. People are home with their families. We (the Yoga group) stay in the grounds of Villa Jaya. We practice some Yoga, we swim, we meditate and make quiet conversation together. We spend time alone contemplating our lives and experiences. Tomorrow, back to the rushing around that so many of us are accustomed to.
Last evening, the Ogah Ogah floats paraded through the streets of Lovina – and all the other towns and villages in Bali. Fearsome models of ogres are carried on bamboo platforms, shoulder high, by teams of men. There is much beating of drums, cymbals and gamelans. Much shouting and chanting to call out the demons. Excited children run around dressed in fancy costumes. Each village or community has their own Ogah Ogah float and compete for prizes as to which one is the scariest.
The crowds are dense and, on our way to our vantage point, we were separated from two of our group. Fortunately, they found us once the bulk of the procession had passed.
After the processions are finished the Ogah Ogah models are burned. Formally, they were made of papier mache but now many are built using polystyrene so there are environmental issues at stake.