jackHere you can read the experiences of one of our Chinese students with the Master TDM from the field research Bali, Indonesia. This blogpost, including the pictures, was written by Libo Zha (Jack). Enjoy the read!

Bali, a popular tourism destination that had been developed for decades, has been chosen as the last stop of our field research. I had already learned some information before we arrived. But I still surprised by some facts when we had meeting with the big hotel’s stakeholder group in Bali on first week. Except all statistics related to tourism, a quite unique local organization drew my attention-Banjar. It is a kind of local government body that keep manage to keep balance between local people and foreign investors. The reputations about Banjar from our meetings divided into extremely two opposite way, people either like it or hate it. But no one can ignore its importance. That was first lesson for me about Bali’s context, which showed if you wanted to know the fact, only people’s opinions were not enough.

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Just after we settled down in Kuta, located at the north of the Ngurah Rai International Airport, another challenge came out. The transportation in Bali is kind of chaos. Due to lack of public transportation, scooter becomes resident’s normal choice. While travelers tend to use taxi service to approach their destinations in Bali, which is a bit more expensive but way safer than scooter. As a result, scooter usually ride in between of all four-wheel-vehicles in the same road! For my perspective, it is really dangerous and require adept skills to ride motorcycle on these roads; but for these “road warriors”, it is just no more than a piece of cake.

Our group stayed in Jimbaran for 2 weeks. Compare to the crowded Kuta, Jimbaran is a quite peaceful and original area located at the south of Bali Island. Though famous for its beach, seafood and sunset, Jimbaran does not receive too much tourists as Kuta does. Surprisingly, the hospitality in Jimbaran, on the other hand, is as good as Kuta. Every day we finished our work, we usually went to the same warung-which means the small family restaurant- to have dinner, because of the waitress’ smile and nice greetings, and of course, the cheap and wonderful food. I realize it was indeed a special selling point for tourism in Bali-the authentic Baliness warm welcome.



As the time went, I had some new understandings about the people here, something further about their wisdom. I used to be a little disappointed because local people were lack of concept of competition, which is a quite important booster for improving business. People seemed do not like show their advantage on the surface. I was kept confusing until I had a conversation with a small coffee shop owner at Jimbaran beach, who indicated that the perfect mode to do business here, was keep low profile and knowing the capability of yourself, so that you can made benefit in a smooth way; just like “make a fire under the radar”. It was amazing. Because in China, we also have these kind of proverb like “earn money and get rich quietly”. At that moment, I felt two different culture system linked to each other! No matter how much difference the contexts are between different culture and societies, the basic logics beneath them are more or less the same.

Within Blinking of eyes, we have already finished our whole field trip. I would say the biggest harvest for me, is to enrich my experiences, learn to listen the truth behind the answer, get to know how work together with people in different background, and furthermore, helps me understand better about this world.