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(10/7/2006) balidiscovery.com's recent article [Bali Responds to Bombing: Tat Twam Asi] drew a record number of visitors to our web site; was quoted in a number of international print and electronic media; and was even circulated to the members of the US-Indonesia Society in Washington, D.C..
A large number of our readers decided to share their comments after reading the article. A sampling of their comments and responses are included below:
• K.H. Nilsson of Varberg, Sweden wrote :
"I am so sorry for what's happened. I was at Bali in just after the 11 September (incident) in New York. First I thought it was a dream but now when it's real, I feel so sorry for you. I stayed in Sanur at Segara Village. Those people down there are the kindest people I have ever met."
• Anne Coburn in the United Kingdom wrote :
"I just felt I had to write and offer my sympathies to everyone for yet another terrible episode. My husband and I have just come back after four extremely enjoyable weeks in Bali. We left just a week before the bombs happened, but if we had been there when it happened we wouldn't have raced back to England as many others did. . .We have been coming to Bali for the last eleven years and will continue to do so whatever else happens. We love Bali and all its people they are some of the nicest kindest people in the world and I wouldn't let them down by turning our backs on them, we are extremely worried about the effect it will have on their livelihoods, things just seemed to be really picking up again this year, we have lots of Balinese friends and I know how desperately worried they will be by the effects of what happened. . . .I can't understand why more British aren't coming to Bali, it isn't as though we are not used to that sort of thing happening here, but as long as we show fear then the terrorists have won, and we will have helped them achieve their aim, so come on everyone show them we won't be beaten into submission."
• Katy French, writing from Melbourne, Australia was moved to elegance and sent us the following :
"I am so passionate about Bali. Arriving back to Melbourne just a few days before the bombing, first thing I thought was, GOD, I wish I was back there. I wrote this piece the other night whilst sitting in my little apartment, staring at 4 walls and feeling helpless.
Bali welcomes you with open hearts. We cannot stop the slaughter, the agony, the sorrow one feels when uncalled acts of violence occur on our island. Only together, the people of Bali, You, as a whole, continue to stand together, to stop our beautiful Island from becoming an island lost. This maybe to hard for those who haven't visited the island of Bali to understand, understandable, but for those who have enjoyed the people, the sites, the culture, the beauty Bali holds uniquely, then please don't give up on it.
Come back to Bali, where every night is a Saturday night and everyday a Sunday. Please help Bali to recover again. Please come back. Don't let these mindless creatures win."
• Stephen O'Brien, Managing Director, of Knight Frank Phuket Company in Thailand sent his encouragement to Bali:
"On behalf of our organization, we offer our deepest sympathy and respects to those whom lost their lives or who were injured in the deplorable terrorist act last Sunday. Phuket respects the 'tourist competition' we have with your island, you will come back."
• Andrea Duffy shared her positive sentiments for Bali, saying :
"We are booked to come to Bali on Nov. 17th to celebrate my 50th birthday. This will be my 32nd visit to your wonderful island. I have NO intention of canceling and nor do our friends who are coming over to celebrate with me. You have to keep living and not let these animals rule your life. I was there 3 weeks after the 2002 bombings and felt exactly the same way. If we all stay away then the ANIMALS win. NO WAY am I giving them the satisfaction. Balinese people need us now more than ever. Tourism is their life. Balinese people are amazing and their culture should be taken on by more people. We have much much more than they do BUT they are happy with what they have. We should be more like them. They will rise above these warped inhumane animals and WIN!!!"
• Andrew Sivijs and his family wrote from Brisbane, Australia :
"Our hearts go out to the victims, their families and the wonderful Balinese community as the island is again visited by evil. My family and I had only just returned from three wonderful weeks in paradise - our six year old's third visit. He was in tears to leave having had life experiences we hope he remembers for many years. He was also in tears Sunday morning as we explained the horror of the latest cowardly acts. The strength of our conviction that these murderers will not change our open and accepting lifestyles will create an immeasurable force. We stand together against these extremists and all they represent. This terror will not win. Friendship, kindness and courage will prevail and will see us back in Bali soon. United we stand. . . .We say a prayer for Bali, the victims and better future."
• Steve Peller from New York, New York said:
"As a New Yorker and a frequent visitor to Bali (one who has spent over two years living in Bali since 1997), the concept of 'Tat Twam Asi' resonated strongly. As I know you understand, these latest acts have the potential to continue to destroy tourism in Bali. In the hope of keeping Bali tourism strong, I have shared your article with some newspapers such as the New York Times. Thank you for doing such a fantastic job at keeping all of us 'Bali-Lovers' informed, and keep up the good work!"
• A regular Bali Update reader, Robert Eales sent the following e-mail:
"I would like to express my heart felt sadness that Bali has once again been abused by the irresponsible people who call themselves part of the human race. I know that the Balinese people will pick themselves up and i hope things will get back to normal soon as possible . . . as you say, Bali's magic is indestructible."
• Julie Griffin, a teacher of hypnosis, wrote to say :
"Thank you for your wonderful article regarding the most recent bombings. I am deeply saddened that you needed to write such an article but your comments were precisely what needed to be said to those of us who think of Bali as a second home. Long live Bali, long live Indonesia. Godspeed."
• Roy Thompson, in Ubud, Central Bali, added this to a string on [ Bali Expat Forum] :
"Great insight from a man who knows Bali well."