That has got to tickle!

Finding tiny shrimp around the mouth, face and even the teeth of a moray eel is common. They are picking parasites off the skin of the eel. A relationship that keeps them both happy. So the deal is, you keep me clean and I won’t eat you. This has got to tickle.

Bali art

One of the things I like most about Bali is that there are arts and crafts everywhere you turn. Everyone there is an artist.

Many years ago I bought two small paintings in an alleyway shop in Ubud. The store was literally in a dusty 5 foot wide alley between two buildings. The guy there was selling work done by several artists. I liked the graphic so much I hunted down the artist to ask him permission to use the art as an ad for some jewelry I was designing. He was honored that I asked and said of course I could us it. In addition to what he was asking for the paintings, I gave him $50 extra for reproducing the paintings, which was a fortune to him, but peanuts to me. I never did use it, but hope to some day. For now his mermaids grace me bathroom wall.

Zebra crab on a fire urchin

This little zebra crab lives on the surface of the fire urchin. You have to get really close, but don’t touch. A sting from the firs urchin could hurt, but probably wouldn’t kill you unless you go into anaphylactic shock. They don’t move fast (hardly at all), so if someone does get stung it was most likely something stupid they did. The urchins can be as big as a basketball in some area of Indonesia, so they are easy to find, but they don’t all have critters in them. Discovering a small shrimp or crab is always a treat.

How do you shoot a very black fish?

Black fish with black-on-black detail is especially hard to capture. Cameras need contrast to focus so auto-focus may struggle with this. A good focus light and manual focus really helps. This was a large, black frogfish in the Banda Sea, so fortunately it was very patient with me. Even with every exposure option possible, the amount of detail you see on your monitor will differ.


This can’t be good. The monkeys in Ubud will pretty much stay in the Monkey Forest, but you’ll see a few wanderers playing on the power lines nearby. I haven’t seen this end in disaster, yet.