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Monday, 28 June 2010

Spending time reading

These last few days that we have left in Bali I am making sure that I use to the fullest. As usual I get up around 6 and drag myself by the monkey forest to the Yoga barn's "early bird yoga".

After that: the one thing that I will not really miss about Bali: the breakfast; which seems to always consist of either pancake or scrambled eggs on toast, tea and a fruit platter. I know it does not seem bad but as I usually make a real ceremony out of my breakfast ( check out Simply Breakfast for inspiration) I really am looking forward to some change. Today we travelled through the lovely landscape to John Hardy jewellery workshop and studio to see how they produce their beautiful treasures and to see the eco concsciously built lunch and showroom. It was really fascinating to see how the silver was first moulded in wax and then turned into silver and it is all done on site, unfortunately I was not allowed to take any pictures to show the incredibe craftmanship that goes into it. At noon I went out on the ricefields and painted some water color landscapes, had lunch at the Sari organic restaurant and read my book. Then we both treated ourelves to some reflexology and massage. What a hard life !

Has anyone read the book " Connected, The surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives" by Nicholas Christakis and University of California? Fascinating stuff!

They claim that everything; from whether you loose/gain weight, marry, divorce, have kids, smoke, donate money, get depressed etc is influenced by your social circle. Maybe we all knew that we were a bit inspired by some of our friends but to that extent? So much for being an individual! But thinking about it; it is actually amazing if you take into consideration what the psychologist Stanley Milgram in the 1960's said: about the whole world, on average, is seperated only by six degrees. So if you for example donate some money, your action travels like a wave, affecting thousands of other people and directing them towards happiness and charity.

I want to leave you with some extracts from " The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari" by Robin S Sharma

You will never be able to hit a target that you can not see." People spend their whole lives dreaming of becoming happier, living with more vitality and having an abundance of passion. Yet they do not see the importance of taking even ten minutes a month to write out their goals and to think deeply about the meaning of their lives, their Dharma. Goal setting will make your life magnificient. Your world will become richer, more delightful and more magical" .

Enthusiasm is one of the key ingredients for a lifetime of successful living. We each think about 60,000 thoughts on an average day. By writing out your desires and goals on a piece of paper, you send a red flag to your subconscious mind that these thoughts are far more important than the remaining 59,999 other ones. Your mind will then start to seek out all opportunities to realize your destiny like a guided missile.

~ Have a clear vistion of your outcome, visualize it.

~ Create positive pressure to keep you inspired- make your goal known to the world, there will instantly be pressure on you to work towards its fulfillment since noone likes to look like a failure.

~ Never set a goal without attaching a timeline to it.

" remember that a goal that is not committed to paper is no goal at all. Go ut and buy a journal and fill it with all yor desires, objectives and dreams. Get to know yourself and what you are all about. Most people have never taken the time to know their strenghts, their weaknesses , their hopes, their dreams.

Divide the book into seperate sections for goals relating to the diferent areas of your life. Fill it with pictures of the things you desire and images of people who have cultivated the abilites, talents ad qualities that you hope to emulate. Then review this book daily, the results will startle you.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Reminder to myself: do not travel on a small boat during the full moon period.

We missed the weekly boat to Borneo so I decided it was a good time to stay in Bali and improve my surf skills. With each day the waves were getting bigger and finally one day, when I felt confident in myself on the board nature proved its power..... The board was left in 2 pieces and made me realize how lucky I had been.

With a small concussion, painful back and cut jaw we moved on to Nusa Lembongan: a small island famous for diving, seaweed harvesting and snorkelling. Growing up in a fishing village I seemed to have forgotten how the full moon affects the sea and was a bit rattled by the journey. But upon arrival I heard stories of boats which had capsized on the reefs and realized that I should once again thank my lucky star.

As I was not my usual self I got a scooter to take me out to the aptly named Dream beach where I spent the day watching the full-moon waves and discussing life at "Cafe Pandan" with a beautiful Brazilian girl from Sao Paolo ( what is it about that city? Some of my best friends and the most amazing people I have met are all from there.)

It brings me such joy to suddenly meet heaps of similar minded people out here. We all of course share the love of seeing and experiencing the world, but there is some common view on the basics and questions of life that is quite extraordinary. The more people I meet the more I realize that it will be very hard to suddenly stop the travelling and go back to a "normal" existence. All the inspiring stories I hear of countries, people and places I had never considered exploring before, suddenly makes the world seem endless and my time here too short.

During daydreaming about my trip on the transsiberian railway then onto Mongolia-China-Tibet-Nepal-Bhutan I suddenly stopped my thought process and realized I was going against my beliefs of living in the presence and  that I needed to do some work on the matter so I researched the internet and quickly downloaded the acclaimed " the power of Now"  ( sorry Mr M, I know I am to predictable).  Hopfully when it is finished I will stop the nonsense of planning my trip to the south pacific and just live in the moment yeah!

We are spending our last few days in Bali in Ubud where I am hoping the healers can help me feel whole again after my little accident. There are lots of full moon ceremonies and activities on her at the moment so it's perfect timing. I have to go now before my enemies: the monkeys steal the computer.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Back to adventure in remote places.

We have decided to travel onwards from Bali to see more of Indonesia and decided to first travel to Java and then onwards by ship to Kalimantan in Borneo. So it will be back for me to meet the orangutangs and probiscus monkeys and to experience the south of this wild country before it is lost forever to logging. I will not have any internet access for 12 days as we are going to the secluded Tanjung-Puting park and then we will  travel by small Klutuk boat on the river, therefore have a lovely rest of June (I am so happy to be able to escape the world cup fuss) next stop is Australia!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Dolphins and waterfalls

A few days were spent in the more secluded area of the north where  the sand on the beach comes from the volcanos. In Lovina we took a boat out and spent time watching lots of dolphins and found an amazing Warung( local restaurant) with the best grilled seafood. After having finished many a book already I am hoping that my reading is starting to follow some sort of common thread and going in the same direction.

We travel around mostly on scooter ( I know it is not the most environmentally friendly way but we are two on one) and take different daytrips from where we stay. We stopped in  Munduk up in the hills to admire the views and
go hiking to the different waterfalls. We also found hot springs to cool down in.....No not a good idea and a lovely quiet buddhist monastery to rest in . Sometimes we treat ourselves to one of the great Bali treatments, and again: I love how they pride themselves by going that bit furter to make simple rituals so beautiful with flowers and smells.

In another world

I have just spent most of the week underneath water. The more time I spent there the more I wanted to go back. Sometimes I would choose to be on my own just watching the life underneath, taking in all of the inspiring colors and watching the turtles around me. Other times I wanted to be where the other snorkellers and divers were and pretend to live in this little community of fish in the deep sea. When dusk arrived, we would go to little huts where you could choose which movie to see and laze around with popcorn and food; back to civilisation feels great when you have been starved from movies for nearly two months.

Thursday, 10 June 2010


Sorry for the looong wait. I have left the retreat and travelled to Sanur and then onwards to the amazing Gili Islands, where life is in the slowlane,  transport is via horse cart or bike.  We spend the days on beautiful secluded beaches, snorkelling and reading. As you can imagine there is not much wifi here so I will update properly in a few days.

Rush hour in the Gilis

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Biking from the volcano

There is so much to do on this tiny island, but to get a true feeling of the small villages we decided to go to one of several volcanos: Ganung Batur and from there mountain bike down through the villages towards Ubud.

Most families grow  their own food here. The ricefields are full for the moment of locals harvesting in a serene way, I tried to help but it was oh so exhausting in the heat. Everywhere you look on the hills you can find cocoa trees, most fruit trees  as well as lots of herbs, spices and other vegetation used for ayurvedic treatments. A lot of families grow their own coffe beans so we went to have a closer look at it. Did you know about the Luwak coffee? It is a special coffee you find here and on Sumatra and the way it is produced is by letting a  mammal called Luwak by the Indonesians, eat the red coffee beans and while the bean is in the stomach it undergoes chemical treatments and ferments. The animal then poos out the beans which are collected, cleaned and roasted to make the very expensive coffee! The coffee is very rich and musty.

The days for the moment are filled with awe of the breathtaking sea life that we are exploring while snorkelling, it really is such a mystic other world out there, we can not get enough of watching the small creatures and the stunning coral reefs.
For the next few days I will not be posting as I am going to stay in a retreat to meditate and take things at even more peaceful rate than before. It is quite something to be so in tune with the sun and the earth-getting up with the sunrise and getting slower as the sun finally fades away in the distance of the ocean. Never looking at a watch. Have a lovely rest of the week.