I am in pure isolation today, except the staff of 6 and a cat. It’s a beautiful day and everyone left this morning and when I say everyone, it was just 3 couples. The 2 London Ladies, Dicky and his friend and the Romanian guy and his lady friend.
Now I am here enjoying the place all to myself. I have the pool, plenty of food and plenty of water and I am doing my part, isolating. Last night while watching the sunset I asked Universe for a sign that I am supposed to listen to my intuition and stay despite everyone elses ideas and beliefs. I closed my eyes and first a pizza popped up and then a snail.
I have seen a lot of snails since I’ve been here but not at this hotel and certainly no pizza. So today after spending quite a bit of time with self and reflection I went to the pool. I sat poolside to dry off and began writing in my journal again. I had finished a thought and put my pen down and at the same time I heard something behind me. I turned around and my eyes locked onto a snail. It was the first place my eyes landed. Bali is a magical place and for my eyes to see something instantly without scanning, impressive. It was the snail. I laughed and was so grateful, I thanked Universe and went about my business with a smile.
A little while later I move to my porch and kick back out of the sun, scanning my phone after being in the pool. I scrolled maybe 3 people down and saw my friend had made a delicious looking pizza, as that was my other sign; again I laughed and put my phone down. I began to write again.
The staff has to stay overnight again as today was a mandatory stay home day. So with everyone else gone, they started playing music and having a dance party! Then they moved it to the other pool, as there are 2 pools. They were fun.
After enjoying them and kicking it poolside off and on, I decide to take a shower and let my bathing suit dry as I am to go to Arik’s place in the morning, which means I need to pack it all again. So I do exactly that and realize I’m hungry. It’s funny to me how I talk about the food a lot. They are semi small portions here so I eat 3 times a day.
I pack up what I can and go order dinner and while she’s making it I went above my room and sat to watch the sunset. So beautiful. Heaven on Earth. Really, my vision boards don’t lie! Hahahaha.
I was heading back to my room when Sylvia comes to me and says I have a letter. She hands me a note from the London Ladies. I was so happy! I missed them this morning. They left earlier than I anticipated. They were trying to get on a flight home. I really enjoyed their company. When they talked about London, it really made me want to move there; just to check it out. They spoke of the ins and outs of living in and around London. Something to seriously think about. So I got their info and found them on facebook and messaged them, I trust that they are on their way home.
As I sit here writing this the staff is hanging out in the restaurant and listening to music and having dinner together. I love how this culture unites, at least on Bali. I’m not sure about the other islands but it’s so beautiful. I’m sitting outside on at the table on my porch, enjoying their music and listening to them laugh and sing.
Everyone here is so friendly and kind. People honk on the road but it’s not road rage, it’s hey I’m here- watch out. They have 4 religions here and they all unite as one. Christian, Buddhist, Muslim and Hindu. Bali is mostly Hindu with some Muslim, I think they said Jakarta is more Muslim. It’s a beautiful blend of religion.
I slept in till 730 today and it was amazing! Today is Npeyi Day. No internet and no tv (not that I’ve used one since I’ve been here). I started with breakfast, fried eggs with watermelon juice and toast. It was so hot by 830 that I jumped in the pool and hung poolside for some time. I went above my room and meditated on my situation and wrote another letter about it. The minute I put the pen down, I looked over and there was a feather sticking right out of the ground. Anyone who is in the know, understands that feathers represents angels, when one crosses your path, know they are with you. That was what I needed to see in that very moment. It was perfect.
I then decided it was time to play catch up with my posts. So I started doing that and then I would take pool breaks in between because it was so hot. By the time noon came around I was hungry so I made myself some noodles and toast, I peeled a cucumber and ate a banana. I was full and happy. I took everything up to the restaurant and washed everything there. I jumped in the pool and then went back to writing.
As I was sitting there, a young man, Dicky, came up and we started talking. He lives here in Bali. His club that he worked at in Denpasar just closed so he is just passing through with a friend. He was living in Jakarta and couldn’t find work because the big companies there don’t hire their own people. The big companies are owned by Chinese and they don’t use people that live in the city. It is so sad. He left because he couldn’t find work and he got into drugs there. So he came here and he has been clean ever since and had a job. His parents live here, and he helps them with their business. Which is cooking, selling food. It seems most families do that as a team. I love that. He is a drummer and loves Wu-Tang and Rancid and many more bands. He is currently working on his first hip hop project, he is in the middle of writing lyrics. He just finished university for tourism and is working on getting his passport so he can go to America and work on a cruise ship in Miami. He is very excited about it. I am super stoked for him too. I told him, don’t spend your money there…save it and bring it home. You can build your restaurant or hotel easily. That’s what he wants to do, and he wants to help his friends out by giving them all jobs in Jakarta. He is also learning how to surf. Super nice, cool cat.
We talked for like an hour and next thing you know it’s 4pm. Dinner time. The kitchen closes at 5 today and this meal was on the house, although I didn’t know it. I ordered the chicken cordon blu. I was slightly skeptical, but I didn’t need to be. It was so good.
I went to go shower and wash my hair; I couldn’t run my fingers through it anymore. The water pressure is so horrible there was no way it was gonna do the trick. I through in some shampoo and said ok all done. Not even gonna bother with conditioner at this time. I sat back down in front of the computer and continued on. I had forgotten that it was a new moon, and no light pollution so when it out dark I wanted to go above my room on the terrace and look at the stars. I invited the London Ladies too.
I went up there and brought my camera. It was so beautiful. Saw some things shoot across the sky and remembered how to take night shots. The only problem is that I need a powerful light to get focus on something. But I did what I could, and I was just so excited to figure it out again.
I stopped taking pictures so I could just enjoy what was before me. I even saw a lot of fireflies which I rarely see anymore in the US. It is truly a fairyland here. Nothing but amazing. Everything is beautiful and right where it’s supposed to be, including me. To see everything with my own eyes, absolutely stunning. No words could truly describe anything I feel or see and for that I am truly blessed.
As I was getting up to go back downstairs, I coughed loudly and a bat was in the tree across from me and I must’ve scared it and it made some noises and flew away. It startled me too. My heart was pounding but then I started laughing and made my way to my room and went to sleepies.
Today was relaxing, I woke up at 5am and jumped in the pool. It was quiet and if anyone was here, they were all sleeping. I sat poolside and watched the sun rise. Today was the day to plan out my trip. Kinda stressful, so I limited it to just the next place I was going to. I figured only plan one stay at a time. I had assistance from my sister, much appreciation for her help.
I received a text from my new friend about an earthquake that happened at 130am. She asked if I felt it, I was out cold. Apparently it woke her up. It was a 6.3 or 6.8 or something but for a tsunami it has to be 7. higher. I thought to myself wow Mother Earth is taking care of business…
Anyways, I found a place in Canggu which is about 35 mins from Kuta. A place called Umah Bamboo Canggu. It was cheap, $14 a night on Airbnb and it’s off the main road. So I booked for 4 days. I will now be here for Silent Day which is a holy day for Indonesia. Rai suggested I stay in a hotel for that so that I don’t have to be stuck in my room. That starts at 6am on the 25th and ends at 6am on the 26th. So I will eventually look into that.
After booking my place of stay in Canggu, I decided to write my blog. Internet was not on my side all morning. It took me several hours just to book my stay. So then I tried to blog and it wasn’t working. So I decided to just relax and let it go till I get to Canggu. I jumped in the pool another time and decided it was time to go for a walk.
I left the hotel not really knowing anything about the area, I just wanted to go by foot and see what was around. Where i was, not much, but I did find a guy selling fresh juice. I bought a watermelon juice, so good and so hydrating. So I went back to the hotel and asked where the grocery store was. Apparently I was right where the grocery store was just a few meters down. So I went to my room and grabbed my backpack and back out I went.
It was HOT, walking in my flip flops, I felt my flip flops melting into my skin. I just wanted to be barefoot! But you don’t do that in the city…gross. I get there and there was a gentleman standing there pouring hand sanitizer in everyone’s hands that were coming in. I walked in and looked for all my favorite fruits and then I found a bottle of Rose called Hatten made here in Bali. So I decided to to buy that too.
As I began my adventure back to the hotel I found the mall. I wanted to see what a mall looks like in Bali. So I walked up the stairs and went to enter. This woman comes to me with a thermometer and takes my temperature. She says I was good and then gave me some hand sanitizer. I continued to meander and the first store was Adidas, I turned the corner and there was sketchers. My oh my, then they had a few little shops in there and a food court and a movie theater. I came and I saw so I left.
As I was heading back I saw the chef from the hotel, we walked back to the hotel together and talked about the lack of tourists. I told him, that’s why we all need to stay, the ones that are here, need to stay. We laughed and went our separate ways.
I went to my room and changed back into swimming clothes and jumped back in the pool. It felt amazing as it was so hot. I sat poolside for sometime and then decided to attempt to plan my trip as if I didn’t have to leave, because quite honestly, you never know.
It started to get dark and my new friends from Jakarta sat at the table beside me. I stopped planning and joined them for the remainder of the evening. We laughed and shared pictures and exchanged FB and Insta info. I made my way once again to bed. I was exhausted from relaxing! hahaha…It was really the energy overload.
Today I woke up and I was tired. I got out of bed at 530am. I was awake at 445 but I was tired. I think subconsciously my energy was sad that we were leaving the most beautiful place I have ever been too. My emotions were heavy hearted.
I got up and finished packing and the girls made me a delicious breakfast as usual. I showered and laid down in bed until about 915 because my driver, Rai was to come and pick me up at 930. I just laid there resting my eyes and couldn’t sleep, so I got up at 915 and to my demise my driver was sitting downstairs hanging out on his phone. Gratefully he hadn’t been waiting long at all.
I gave him a tour of the treehouse, said my see you laters to the girls and we went on our way. We made a few pitstops on the way to Kuta. The first being immigration office, as the world is shutting down I need to know what I can do to stay. I went to the one in the north, I knew that one would not be busy at all. The one in Kuta, that would be crazy busy. Rai took me and helped me figure out how to get seen. I waited patiently as I only had 3 people in front of me. Whe I finally got up there they told me there was a restriction till March 30th. So I plan on making my plans and then calling back on the 31st. And see if they have lifted the restrictions. Otherwise they say I need to leave by April 9th. That is not going to happen. I am supposed to be here and I’m just gonna go with the flow. Everything always works out…
After we left there we went to Gigit Waterfalls. It was very beautiful but nothing compared to the Blue Lagoon and the waterfalls there after. Rai didn’t come on the tour with me, which I was bummed by because he’s cool and extremely helpful. I had another guide who was cool, Ketut.
As I have been here for a week, I have learned that Ketut means that the person named Ketut was the fourth born. The first is Gday (Gede), second is Kadek, third born is Komong and the fourth is Ketut.
Our walk to the waterfall was short and sweet, however it is well over commercialized and what I mean is that there are so many little shops on the way down and back up and they will not stop harassing you. I say that because we walked by so many women and children trying to sell me stuff (as I was basically the only one there, due to corona virus). After we walked by so many apparently we came up on his own family’s shop and said to me, if you decide to buy something then we would appreciate your business. I told him I didn’t need anything but I would love to help out, as everyone is hurting for business.
When we get to the waterfall, breathtaking. So beautiful, it was too chilly and about to rain to actually get in the water. I just wanted to take some pictures and sit back and enjoy it. He asked to take pictures of me, which was something I do’t hear like ever and was hesitant by his words. But I gave in and was totally stoked to have someone take a picture of me. My last guide did too and I was glad for that. However I am not an instagram photogenic person. I’m so used to being behind the camera, so when the time came for pics I stood there awkwardly. lol. It’s fine…something I am going to work on…
As we made our trek back he reminded me that his family’s shop was right here so I decided to look around anyways. Knowing I need nothing, a woman can always find something. And I did. I found a beautiful batik sarong purple and gold…I saw it and said I LOVE that. she tried selling me pants and a tank top which I knew I did not need. I kept looking and saw bags. I actually did need a bag so I didn’t have to continue to take my backpack everywhere. I began to make a pile. Which included the honesty fruit tea, mangosteen and tumeric. I wanted to make the same drink the girls were making me at the treehouse (I call them girls because they are young and this was there first job). I finish my pile and I ask how much, she tells me 900k rps. Which I’ve been here for a week and know that is way too much. I tell her I only have a certain amount. she kept on, I said no thank you and tried to walk out. Apparently everyone but me knows not to buy anything when going to places like that. I really thought I was helping his family, but then she got aggressive. I said 200k and that is that. She gave it to me because I was probably going to be the only tourist feeding into her. Meaning, that would be the only money she makes that day and with everything going on, probably the only money she will make for a while. I wasn’t trying to be rude but 900k is criminal.
We finally got back to the car and I was so happy to see Rai! We left the mountain in a heavy down pour. Still saw monkeys and dogs all over the road. Our next stop was supposed to be the rice terraces but it was raining buckets and there was no way we were getting out to walk around. So he took me to this restaurant that over looked rice terraces. Wow…and we got to stay dry. For me, that was priceless. Sure it would’ve been amazing to go see but It was cold rain. We had a buffet and I had a glass of wine. They say that when you have a driver that takes you distance like that, it’s customary to buy them lunch. I definitely have no problem doing that. He’s been super amazing. He took me to all these amazing places and didn’t add the detours to the bill.
Again, pouring buckets we pull up to the famous candi bentar, in front of the golf course. He was telling me that normally there is a line about an hour long just to take a picture. We pulled up and I shot a picture from the car. Not the same but for me it’s all about my eyes seeing beauty, not necessarily the camera. It was beautiful, but they are literally everywhere in Bali. So I didn’t feel guilty for not getting out and taking an instagram pic.
We then went to this beautiful temple on the water, Ulun Danu Beratan Temple. Wow, incredible. Again I was told that there is usually no parking and the wait is more than an hour, normally. Today, it was empty according to Rai. We walked around and took some pictures and then it started down pouring. Everyone ran for cover. I had my nice camera out so Rai and both ran too. We all huddled under the canopy where they prepare their offerings. I sat there looking at all the offerings, ducks, chickens, and others. I asked how they do it and during the ceremony they slit their throats.
It slowly stopped down pouring but was still raining. Rai and I both agreed that we were not going to melt in the rain so we walked out and took some more pictures. On our way out I wanted a picture between the candi bentar. My phone had died so Rai was pulling out his phone for me and while that was happening a group of women from Jakarta jumped in the center and started taking pictures. I was standing watching them and they looked at me and motioned me to come in the picture with them. I laughed and was so happy too. I got in the picture and we all went our separate ways. Rai told me that they were from Jakarta and they were going to go home and tell everyone how excited they were to take a picture with a foreigner. I had no idea… but I love it. He said because nobody is here, they haven’t seen many tourists.
We continued on our journey to Kuta. It was a beautiful drive, through the country side and through all the villages. We entered the city and I knew it. The energy, the air and so many people. I was taken back and I guess not ready to leave the mountains. I miss it a lot.
We made it to the hotel and Rai and I looked at each other and we were like, wow this place is fancy! Lol. We went our separate ways once again. I went to my room, 108=9. Loved it, except that the tv was on and it was crazy loud. I immediately turned it off, and laid down. I was so tired. I was to meet a fellow GLT’r for dinner somewhere in the evening. So I took a nap for 40 mins and got dressed and ready to go.
I downloaded the GoJek app and was on my way. GoJek is the Uber of Indonisia, only they have motor bikes and cars. I ordered a bike. My third ride of my journey. We met at a spot called Lia Cafe. Literally on the beach. It was awesome and she was cool. I loved meeting her from a facebook group! That was awesome. In order to get back to we had to walk down the street to the main road and only then can we order a gojek. I finally found my driver, or actually he found me.
Made it back to the hotel and sat by the pool for a bit longer and went to bed. I so appreciated the air conditioning and the clean bed I was about to dive into.