Don’t know whether to laugh or cry / the long hot summer just passed me by

Perhaps I’ve been here too long. Gone troppo seems to be a not uncommon affliction for we expats, if visual evidence is anything to go by. You do see some truly odd sorts wandering the back streets of Legian or Denpasar – too much sun, too many Bintangs, too many days sitting wondering. I may be, or I may well end up, one of them. I sit and wonder about that.

Because it concerns me that I was able to follow two guys on a motorbike the night before last for some ten minutes before it occurred to me that the guy on the back was carrying a kerosene lamp. It seemed not unusual to see anything on a bike. Then it also occurred to me that not only was this pillion passenger carrying a kerosene lamp but the damned thing was lit. So, on a bike, with a tank, I assume, at least partially full of gas, on the by-pass, which is as close to a motorway as we have in Bali, travelling at least 50 kph, was some guy carrying a container full of a very combustible liquid with an almost naked flame burning above. Then I noted he had no working headlight on the bike. This was his headlight substitute. Tidak apa apa…

That made the motorcycle helmet, in the shape of the old German coal scuttle military one – its not an unusual shape on the roads here, but unlike many visitors, I’ve stopped noticing – on sale in a shop yesterday, albeit painted in a lurid bright pink – seem unworthy of comment, so I won’t bother.

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