Friday, May 16, 2008


7 May 2008
11 p.m.

Just got out of the hot tub. I just have to have a smoke. I deserve a hot bath and a stick of cigarette. I have been sitting the whole day in the Third Global Inter-Media Conference here at the Grand Hyatt in Bali, Indonesia. A lot of challenges facing media have been discussed, primarily the problem of corruption and unethical media practices.

It has been a long trip yesterday. I left Manila 8 in the morning, arrived in Singapore (where a Filipina saleslady convinced me to buy the latest Giorgio Armani perfume for men) at about lunch time, took another plane to Jakarta, where I transferred to a domestic airline (Garuda) for the one-hour-and-a-half bumpy plane ride to Bali.

I haven't been around yet. From the airport I went straight to the hotel. It was already evening, so there was not much to see along the way. An expensive batik polo shirt was waiting for me, courtesy of the Indonesian government, for the formal dinner in the evening with the Foreign Minister. It was a fun night of Bali culture – dance, songs, etc – that I was moved to buying two carvings – an Indonesian rice god and Rama and Sita.

I spent time attending all the sessions, taking down notes, interviewing media experts from around the world – about a hundred-and-thirty of us – and, of course, eating. I had three medium grilled lobsters during dinner the first night!

So now, to my cigarette before I indulge myself with a restful night that I haven't had for some time now.

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