December 11, 2011 The Jakarta Post Brent Leavell, Contributor, Gianyar, Bali
Life begins to stir at 3 a.m. near traditional markets in Gianyar regency, Bali, with farm trucks lining the streets with fresh produce and supplies.
An hour later, the merchants are opening and supplying their rented kiosks and stalls while the walk-in sellers vie for an open floor space in the courtyards.
Sipping Balinese coffee at a mere cost of Rp 1,500, farmers and traders exchange hands full of cash next to the supply trucks, while women carry the newly purchased goods on their heads into the market grounds.
As the vendors prepare for the masses, the roar of motorbikes can be heard pouring out of the highland villages as the buyers advance on the market. Modernity in the way of motorbikes and cell phones has hit Bali hard recently.
By 5 a.m. the market is packed full of buyers and cash exchanges are rapidly take place.
Culture and economic activity is thriving. The scene is hectic yet friendly.
The vast majority of the buyers and sellers are women. An older woman in a traditional batik sarong points and explains to her granddaughter how to bargain with the seller for fruit intended for ceremonial offerings.
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