Sunday, April 29, 2018

Home Sweet Om

99 days
6 countries
17 flights
18 cities
27 beds

So nice to be home!  New perspective.  Everything looks so fresh, so clean, so quiet.  In deep gratitude for all we have and enjoy here.  Family, friends, and home.   It was a wild an crazy journey. Meeting delightful locals who all seem to maintain a gentle calm even when they have to work so hard and toll long days.  Kindness is woven through their core.  New friendships created.   Appreciation for the wonder of the earth, it’s beauties and challenges.  Sadness for the ever evolving pollution and crowding, altering the delicate balance...

Thanks for following my humble writings and musings on the road.

Till the next trip, wherever it may be...

Lena and Ron

Saturday, April 14, 2018

From Old...

To New...

Bali Blues

We have been terribly sick for the past week since our return from Pemuteran.  Miserable!  Racking coughs, feverish, weak, and completely unable to do anything.  Stuck in our room for days.  Now we had this romantic ideal of the “old” Bali style rooms.  Lots of gardens, fountains, high pitched ceilings, outdoor sitting rooms and outdoor bathrooms.  More of a natural connection with our surroundings.  Well, all that is totally unsuitable when you are as sick as we are.  It’s painful to have to go from your air conditioned room to your extremely hot bathroom outside a zillion times.  It is totally a bummer when you have a noisy freezing AC unit that doesn’t respond to the controller because it’s old and antiquated.  Somehow romantic becomes funky when the WiFi won’t work, and the bed is hard and the pillows dense and huge.  After five nights, in three different rooms mind you, we finally woke up yesterday and looked at each other with puffy sleepless eyes and said “We can’t take this any longer”.  We got up, got a taxi, went to town, and found a nice new modern hotel.  Clean bright rooms with beautiful indoor bathrooms.  Bargained alittle for a slightly reduced price, but really we were willing to pay almost anything.  Rode back, got our bags, paid our bill, and returned to our new digs.  That took every ounce of strength we had.  Took a really long shower, put on our fluffy white terry cloth robes, got into bed and didn’t come out of our room until this morning.  Started taking Z- Pak yesterday as well.  Tried herbal remedies, cough meds... nothing helped.  We were getting sicker and sicker.  So now we have surrendered to modern medicine, and hopefully will be strong enough and well enough to catch our flight on Tuesday.  Not how I imagined spending my last week in Bali.  

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Taman Sari Resort ~ Pemuteran

Pemuteran ~ Bali

There is a yearly yoga event in Ubud called the Spirit Festival which attracts thousands of young yogini’s and others interested in meditation, music and youthful folly.  Ron and I decided to get out of town during those six days and we went to Pemuteran.  About a 4 hour drive over the mountains to the northwest.  Many hairpin turns and narrow roads.  The day we went it poured while we were at the highest points.  We were in the clouds.  I told the driver “Hati Hati” which essentially means slow or careful.  But as we got down to sea level, the sun was brilliant and the water the deepest blue.  We were pleasantly surprised how clean the water was as we had heard tales of dirty trash in the water and beaches.  But we arrived at a good time and it was lovely.  We spent six nights in a small bungalow in the Taman Sari Resort. It was very peaceful.  Manicured lawns and large frangipani trees.  Two pools and of course, the sea.  Water was warm.  It was very hot and many mosquitos.  We had to sleep beneath our netting for the first time on the entire trip.  The people there were all genuinely nice and the pace of life much slower.  We could hear gamalon music at night from far off as well as the prayers from the mosque.  There were many more Muslim people here being so close to Java.  Overall we had a great time.  Found a few nice restaurants to eat at other than the resort.  Sadly, toward our last couple of days, Ron started to get sick with sore throat, racking cough, and fever.  He was very weak.  By the time we checked out, he had just surrendered to the long ride back to Ubud.  Fortunately we had a great driver, comfortable SUV, and he was cautious and slow.  Stopping a couple of times for photos of the beautiful lakes, and detouring from the main road through an area where the fields of rice paddies were stunning.  Less traffic through the villages, and more local flavor.  We arrived back at our same resort, Alam Jiwa, to hugs and a big welcome from the staff.  Our room, the Hanoman (Monkey God), was filled with flowers.  We felt grateful to be back.