Ancient Wisdom

Hello ,

Greetings from Bali, where I have just landed.

Here the IMF - International Monetary Fund annual meeting has just started. 26,000 banking big wigs and other high profile people have taken over all the best hotels on the island and are all driving around with police escorts, looking very important.
Every junction has special police security, Ringo told me several thousand extra police from Java have been drafted in..

Last week I was telling you about blue sky thinking from the 49th floor in Kuala Lumpur, you can read about it here.
Tomas was with me in KL, he stayed on to finish setting up a new office there while I took the Airasia flight to Denpasar, Bali. Today he flies back to the UK, and into the crazy fray that is AW Sheffield.

Ringo (our agent in Indonesia) was waiting for me at the airport as always, and as we drove to my hotel explained that a container was due to be dispatched on Thursday and he'd like me to see the whole process. Ok no problem I told him.
So we start early he said I'll pick you up at 7am.
It was hard work finding a decent hotel at a reasonable price (bloody IMF meeting) but I got a mini villa with a plunge pool right out side the bedroom window.. I plan an early night so can be up and ready for the container day. Only problem, this room has bugs and mosquitoes as extra guests, a massive cockroach fell from the straw roof and landed on it's back little legs wriggling in the air right by the bed. That reminds me, I must check what type of fumigation they are using on the container, when we opened a container last month a huge Hunter Spider crawled out scaring the wits out of the goods in team. So I can't sleep, all these bloody bugs, then...bzzz bzzzzzz right by my ear, I hate that! it's a thirsty mosquitoes looking for the blood of an English man. So I get up, I know what to do.. switch on the air-con very cold, turn on the outside lights and open the door, they will soon bugger off towards the light. It's 2.46am.

My heart is beating ten to the dozen, I don't know why. I see ripples forming on the plunge pool. then I know.. OMG.. I know.. it's an earthquake, and feels BIG I feel the earth moving, what do I do, go outside? The plunge pool is sploshing around waves over the edge into the garden, the floor is dancing about under my feet. 30 seconds.. or more I think.. then it's over. Dogs are barking nearby.. but all seems normal.
I was here a couple of months back and experienced a small earthquake while in Ubud market, but this was a real one and in the night a bit terrifying. Now of course I cannot sleep. I lay awake thinking about how fragile life could be.
Later I learn it was 6.3 earthquake and sadly on Java three people died, but not much damage.. most people including Ringo had slept through it. Lots of bankers had been tweeting their distress and at least one fat-cat / scardy-cat cancelled the trip. 6.3 is big enough to scare you, just a bit bigger will cause damage, and 7 and above can trigger a tsunami, like tragically happened in Sulawesi Island only a couple of weeks back, 1600 people dead.

I get up early to meet Ringo for breakfast, he is unconcerned about the earthquake.. and focused to getting the next container away.

The empty 40ft container had been delivered in the late evening and parked in a car-park close to our warehouse. We have a problem, because our landlord decided to open a coffee shop for his daughter, which protruded into the loading area, now a forty foot container won't quite fit, so we are forced to load everything on pick up trucks and ferry everything to our car-park loading area.


Quite a bit of stuff is arriving last minute from suppliers, including some shopfitting for Agnes & Cat - a rush job, they have been finishing the furniture working night shifts, to meet the loading date. We have five guys, and the amazing always smiling Ketut a lady who no-one messes with and can get packing labels organised and printed, emergency label 5000 packs of jewellery and wrap various furniture in corrugated cardboard.. while bossing round the guys to get a move on. Did I tell you.. Ketut has two husbands (this is Bali, and it happens), two of those guys on the packing team.. are.. yes you guessed it .. the husbands. Ringo is juggling the packing list on his spreadsheet, to make exactly 69 cubic meters. He must sent the packing list to the shipping company within three hours of dispatch.


Ready to go...


Container Fumigation

By 2pm the container is filling up, everyone is shifting boxes, helping with last minute packing of cartons. By 5pm we are pushing in the last cartons. Ketut and the husbands wave good bye and are off. Now we await the fumigation guy to come, he will pump the container full of gasses that will hopefully kill any stray bugs that might be lurking within. He will issue a certificate, that we need to clear customs in the UK. Then we have to wait for the driver to return, hook up the truck.
I get a taxi back to my hotel, to save Ringo that job, so my day is not that long.. but Ringo will have worked 19 hours.. to make it happen.

He still want's to meet me for breakfast at 7am and work the next day. I tell him to take the day off, we can work on Saturday instead. I'm so tiered anyway after the earthquake night..

Everyday, at AW there are containers arriving, from China, or India of Indonesia.. like a lot of things we take them for granted. And it's easy to forget there is a lot of work involved.. before we even unload the stock and start marketing and shipping it.

More news next week.
Meanwhile.. it's going to be Halloween so very quickly.. yes I know it's scary right?
Are you ready.. we have lots of deals for you see below..

Take care



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