It´s lazy Sunday time…while hanging around on a big sofa with a refreshing lemon iced tea, I make a review of the mythical times of Nyepi Day.
Nyepi Day, known as the Day of Silence, was on 31st of March 2014. It is the start of Caka, the new year in Bali. It is a day of absolute quietness all over the island for 24 hours. It´s a little bit scary not to hear anything outside. Even the animals seemed to be quiet! Showing respect to this religion all shops are closed, everyone stays at home, household electricity is to be turned off and maybe it is the only day in the year, where you could drive on the streets without fear of his life (unfortunately you are not allowed to leave your house). The only people on the streets are the Pecalang (the Nyepi Police) to make sure there is no one else out. Also the television is turned of. We tried to watch anything, but there was no signal.
Sounds quiet boring isn´t it?
However Nyepi Day consists of more! Just go out on the street the day before Nyepi. My friends and I did so and participated the Ngrupuk Parade in the evening. The streets are crowed and coloured due to the Ogoh Ogohs.
The Ogoh-Ogoh are statues handmade build by the Balinese in form of mystical demons. It is hard to describe how they look like. We felt in some kind of mystic horror show. The figures looked so crazy and should represent any spiritual aims inspired by hindu philosophy. The statues has been carried by groups of Balinese or they stood on some kind of rolls. The basic idea is to make as much noise as possible for scaring of all ghosts. After the ceremony the statues will be burned.
We tried to have a look on each statue and went to the very beginning. Didn´t knowing what exactly happens we waited with thousands other for the start of the parade. Suddenly the first group walked some meters forward and turned the huge “monster” around. We almost come under the wheels. We´ve been pushed in all directions. It was a mixture of funny and scary. Finally we survived all other statues as well and went home completely drenched in sweat by us and others.
It was great to took part in one of the most popular ceremonies on Bali and I can recommend it to everyone.
Greetings and selamat tinggal,