Lembongan Diary: Wednesday 13 September 2023

Another few days go missing in diary writing as a solution to money issues had to be found.

Presuming it was the usual ATM out of cash issue when pumping in my card to the whirring machines of Lembongan ( it’s a lottery here, you never know if and when your card will be swallowed and not returned and the BNI ATMS have been engineered to make such terrifying mechanical sounds that you are convinced your card will be next for the chop) I therefore ignored the issue of cash Friday through Monday until Panther the moped guy said he needed is IDR for the bike for the upcoming 4 weeks. Life without the bike would no doubt make me fit, or not leave the house ever again  and the thought of not having one is very scary indeed. Find cash quickly!

A fruitless set of visits to the island’s 5 operating ATM’s hidden at various points of the compass around Mushroom bay, followed by a visit to a money changer (commission 12% per transaction) soon told me that technology wasn’t the issue but my bank had obviously put a stop on the card and as usual thought it pointless to inform me even via their internal internet banking messaging, that , by the way we’ve fucked with your card but we will just make your life even harder by not actually telling you.

I’ve been using my phone on wi-fi since arriving in Indonesia but of course banks refuse to communicate like the rest of us via email or whatsapp that would make life far too easy.

So,  $AUS50 later for a new SIM card and international minutes which cost a fortune here i eventually got hold of the bank and the CC company that begins with a  V to ask them why my card didn’t work.. oh .. you’ve had some charges out of Indonesia. Well , as i’ve set my card to use in Indonesia since May and it’s now September and i’ve been using my card at least every 48 hours for nigh on 5 months it might not be suprising that i have had a charge out of Indonesia was my  inner monologue.

But, as we all know, pointing out the blindingly obvious to a bank phone human automaton is bound to get one in trouble and one’s call diconnected because we’ve hurt their feelings so its the usual oh yes i recognize that charge 100%. Of course i don’t recognize the charge because an Indonesian business name on Lembongan which in no way relates to the relevant retail outlet is not something I’m ever going to remember or even be aware of for that matter. So just lie through your teeth,the bank doesn’t care as long as the individual accepts liability and they save themselves $108 or whatever it was and move on so I can again access credit

Task achieved, Panther has money, food on table etc etc

Today i saw this sign on the beach . I wonder if they have had anybody in from NSW to help them with their don’t do anything signs that Australians so love.

Now of course i’m slightly worried that Lembongans peaceful citizenry are in fact secretly, pistol packing Texan types, who run around the beaches of the island firing off automatic weapons just for fun.I suppose it is probably a good idea to watch your children if this is the case.