Bali is the type of place where seemingly strange things go on all the time and after a while you stop noticing or realizing just how strange some of these things are. In fact, one of the best ways to tell if you have truly acclimated to the local culture is your ability to dismiss things that make little sense without much thought. I’ve gotten pretty good at that myself, but this message that I got from my satellite service the other day couldn’t be ignored.


Blue Screen of Death

While watching a movie, all of a sudden the picture and sound cut out and I got the equivalent of the old Windows Blue Screen of Death.  The message read: “Sun Outage – This satellite transmission of this channel is having disturbance due to sun outage. Normal Programming will resume shortly.”

After a good 2.3 seconds of thinking about it I was truly confused. First of all, why shouldn’t the satellite transmission be able to operate correctly without the sun? I know they aren’t running on solar power. Secondly, I have never had this problem at night time, wouldn’t every night be considered as an extended sun outage?

Then I took a look outside and found it to be perfectly sunny out. Not that I was expecting things to start making any more sense, but it did add to the humor of it all a little bit. 15 minutes later the picture and sound came back to normal and I quickly forgot about the “Sun Outage”, and added it to my memory bank of those funny little things that happen all the time here to make life a bit more interesting.


  • Isn’t the message about the sun outage ON the satellite itself. It may have solar panels and needs them to send to earth. They may experience a temporary problem with the alignment of the solar panels, so the sun is ‘out’.

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