"Here I am at a Balinese New Year's Eve
parade with new found friends. One of the boys is holding a postcard of the Empire State
Building, which I gave him as a representation of my world. In that moment, New York
seemed light years away. Nyeppi is the Balinese New Year, a festival in which each village
makes a giant effigy of an evil spirit. They are brightly colored and often whimsical,
doing everything from riding Harleys to looking downright ugly.
On New Year's Eve, they parade through the
street swirling the effigies to confuse the evil spirits. At 10:00 p.m., they burn the
sculptures to release the evil. New Years Day is called "Quiet Day;" no
one is allowed out of their home. Any movement might attract the liberated evil, still
hovering above the island from the night before, to settle on Bali for another year.
I spent 10 days biking around Bali in 1996."
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