Ubud Writers and Readers : Day 2 and Day 3 (Part 2)

Previously read Part 1

Dear Earthlings,

Sneaking during office hours writing a continual post of Ubud Writers and Readers Festival. Why not ey? Anway

2nd Day
Saturday, 12th October 2013
(I stopped writing at this part, upon writing the title and resuming after gluttonous Chinese dinner)

My first shift ever was "Cooks, Books and Blogs" on 9pm at Casa Luna. I would be helping Tracey Lindster, Mark Lowerson and Andrea Pohl for their Vietnamese Cooking workshop. I was so anxious, because I was not really briefed thoroughly. They started asking me about where to display the book, ticketing, how many people were attending, I was really clueless but I was trying to be as professional as I could. I started calling every person that I know (e.g : Hannah, Hannah and Hannah) to confirm about the audio visual and transport, which I had one a day before, but everything seemed not to be arriving yet. But thankfully, it was all settled pretty smoothly. I did not have to worry so much because gradually the special event team, audio visual team were coming over to the venue and they were such a big help and professional. It showed how powerful UWRF's teamwork is.

at cooks, books and blogs

I was trying to make sure that I was sticking around with one of the writers, and I was following Mrs. Tracey Lindster wherever she goes. To the kitchen, making sure the team was preparing the right ingredient. Thankfully, the chef assistant and the rest of the kitchen speak very good English. So, I did not really do much. I wish I could stay until the workshop ends, which was around lunchtime. But I had shift to go. So, I excused myself and went uphill to main venue.

I had two panels that clashed it was John McGlynn's panel and Angelo Suarez's panel. I managed to meet with Angelo and his family. They are such a cute little family. Your heart will melt if you see Angelo with his checkered shirt, jeans and casual beard and shoes... but he was holding stroller. That was so cute. His son, Marcello is just the sweetest. He was sleeping before panel and woke up in the middle of panel, screaming, "Daddy! Daddy!" I swear, that was the cutest thing ever.

As for John McGlynn, I remembered he was replying my email by saying, "You will found me as a pretty independent guy" and he was not kidding. However, I stayed for his panel, "The Asian Century". It was really interesting. They talked about the literature, translating, and English-lit market in Asia.

The same day, I also bumped to Ahmad Fuadi who is one of my favorite writer and he is so warm. One day, I found him praying inside the volunteer's basecamp. What a humble man!

blissful meeting with Ahmad Fuadi

It was late afternoon and I continued my journey to Neka to attend Michael Lunik's panel on drawing and cartoon. It was a full crowd.

When it was getting dark, I was really hoping that I would catch a sunset at Taman Baca. However, I directed my journey back to hotel. I regretted my decision really. But anyway I had to meet with my brother, who was in Bali at that time and planned to spend his birthday. He was the reason why my travel got messed up and the reason that crazy japanese tourist hated me for life (refer to Part 1) Anyway, I still love him.

We ended up talking at Anomali Coffee. That was a pretty simple place to celebrate his 19th birthday. I left my wallet at hotel and only bring my magical pouch with contains small changes. I really wanted to treat him something nice, not coffee, yeah but I left my credit card... so what to do. By the way, he was the one who ended up visiting Taman Baca that evening and it seemed like he caught the sunset. Damn! Well, it was his birthday, so...

birthday coffee...

I was trying to inspire him about this festival. I brought him to Bar Luna where the poetry event was going and to Betelnut where Pechakucha was. However it was not even starting yet, so he left.

The next thing I did, was joining my friend for Pechakucha. We left quite early for dinner at Warung Ijo, where the rest of our friend were having their dinner. There were Tia, Upneet, Chris and Meita. It was such a fun dinner. We talked about gypsy, one of Asia's prominent chef (ehem), after an hour of eating, laughing and choking... we went to Kajeng Street party!

at kajeng street party!

And, again we were late for awesome performance. Last night we missed Dialog Dini Hari and this time, we missed Cambodian Space Project. Anyway, we moved further close to the stage where the crowd more alive. After being separated, I met with my writers again, Yordan and Leroy. It was a fun time. We took pictures with the actors and actress in costumes. We met Jesus!

We ended the night, chatting at Upneet's homestay until 1 am. The conversation got deeper and deeper. It was like another panel in the middle of the night, starting with one question of "If you were given a magic want to fulfill your wish tonight, what your wish would be?"

... and what is your answer, guys?

3rd Day
Sunday, 13th October 2013

It is Shiny Sunday in Ubud! And yeah, I do not know what I could remember from the day. But this was the day I spent most of my time traveling from panel to panel, and leaving message to writers for formality, of their session's reminder. My first panel was the one with Bernice Chauly, Selena Godden, and yeah I met Selena before the panel started. She wrote "I love Ubud" on the newly-installed blackboard just in front of the left bank. She was so nice! The panel was talking about challenges that writers/people face from having different background. It was a really good talk.

Then I was travelling downhil and climb uphill to Ronji Restaurant for "Long Table Launch". One of my writers, Romy Ash from Australia, was invited to the lunch. Actually, they provided a table for writer's liaison volunteers. However, the bakso malang in front of leftbank was tempting enough and it diverted me from upclass lunch to hawker snacking. A bowl of bakso cost Rp.10.000 or USD 1 and you have a bowl of magic soup filled with meatballs, eggs, ketupat (rice cake), rice noodles, noodles (red : carbs) The vendor was super friendly. Nobody was no friendly in Ubud!

at long table lunch with writers and chefs

omnomonomom... I miss you

I introduced this awesome pot of bakso to my Bulgarian friend with pride. I hope he didn't think it was too spicy.

There was one panel that I would die to see and it was Tony Wheeler + Trinity Panel at Neka... Travellers! The name pretty much summed up everything right?! It was all about traveling! And yea, I had a reason to be upclose and personal with Tony because I was his liaison! He is nice and Trinity is exceptionally tall!

with Trinity and Tony!

After the traveller's panel, I went back to Indus to join the controversial and fun panel which was "The Sex Debate!" I loved that panel. Chaired by Clemetine Ford, the writer opened up and read many different stories with sexual appeal in different approach. I liked the story of a man who was trying to help a girl with broken arms and she was in post-labor condition... or so I thought it was. Anyway, I liked the story because the attraction is chaste yet genuine. There was Indonesian author, Ayu Utami, in the panel. She is one of Indonesia's prominent writer whose book I haven't read. But after the panel, I bought her book "Pengakuan Eks-Parasit Jalang". The book is the answer that I have been looking for. People say, write what do you wanna read, then Ayu has written it all for me and the rests of her fans! Spot on!

From Main Venue, I was heading straight to Rouge for Laksmi Pamuntjak's book launch. There were so many interesting panel and events going on during that time... 5pm to 7pm. There was Act of Killing Screening at Betelnut and Tony Wheeler's book launch (yeah, I think I was supposed to be there, but Tony was fine :P)

the reading of "Question of Red"

It was one of memorable highlight to meet Laksmi herself. She is so warm and looks quite impressed when I showed her the 1st edition (with paper slit) of Amba that I owned. I asked her whether she wants to write the continual story of Amba, because for me, I wanna know more about it! However, she kept it as a mystery and asked me to stay for the discussion :D She has a nice British accent by the way. And on the top of that, I met Daniel Ziv, who would be having his Jalanan Screen the next day. I stole a start to take photo and autograph. He is such a goofy man!

Then, before 7, I made sure that I rushed to home for shower because the next event is UWRF POETRY SLAM! My favorite! I met with my poet friend, Putri and I watched her performed. That night we met and mingled with others. With my writers, my friends, everyone....It was such a nice time and CJ Bowerbird was such a great host to the event. I hope I could be one of those who are brave enough to take the stage next year!... or later hahhaa

CJ hosts the UWRF Poetry Slam... the winner is poetry!

The slam last until 10pm and we went for a dinner wandering Jalan Gotamma but everything seemed to be closed, until we ended up at a Tapas at Havana where we enjoyed platter of awesomeness....

At 12 we left and along the way home, I chatted with 2 of Poetry Slam performers, Elaine Foster and Abby Latif. It was nice to meet them, knowing that they are from Kuala Lumpur, now I know where to go if I want to look for some poetries...


  1. Oh my god you came! I just started my current job so there was no way I could skip work for UWRF and Makassar Writers Festival. Reading your entries, I felt like crying, knowing what I was missing. Next year we have to come together as writers ok!

    1. Hey my dearest Utti! There will always be next year so don't worry :) But I kinda wish that you were there as well. I am sure you will enjoy it and contribute your best to the festival. As writers, wow that's a pretty tall order but yes... who knows right? that is one of my lifetime goals as well.... God Speed for us and take care!

    2. Btw Ayu, can I make a suggestion? Your blog theme makes it really hard for me to navigate the pages hahaha I suggest you change it to a simpler one ^^

    3. yes, I understand it as well. I feel like my blog is hard to navigate, maybe this weekend I will find something simpler. Thanks for suggestion dear.


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