Here in Bali, in just twenty four hours, I can experience a multitude of emotions: joy, sadness, wonder, repulsion, empathy, inspiration, confusion, awe, happiness, gratitude and pleasure. There are more. Yesterday and today I had an opportunity to experience them all.

Once again, in my meandering, I had the opportunity to observe the hard life of most Balinese women. When watching them cook in a traditional kitchen with little to no ventilation, gadgets or appliances, I recall my new kitchen at home..

Sumantra's wife cooking

Sumantra’s wife cooking

Buckets of sand for construction

Buckets of sand for construction

I am awestruck watching them dig, load and carry construction materials on their heads with such regal bearing (note the smile…..always, THE smile.)

The masterpieces of Balinese weaving created over months, patiently and steadfastly on the women’s looms, humble me.

Traditinal Balinese weaving

Traditinal Balinese weaving

Their days start predawn and end at dark whether at home, in the fields, on the lava piles or in their families’ shops. Their children are always by their side.

Last evening Sherry and I met for dinner at Rondji, a stunning restaurant overlooking the Campuhan Ridge.

Oh, the astonishing view.....

Oh, the astonishing view…..

In the distance we could see the hikers climbing the trail in the fading light as they tried to avoid the intense heat of day. The Rondji is an outdoor restaurant bursting with orchids, brightened by red tablecloths, made peaceful by an infinity pool and surrounded by jungle and dynamic distant green, green views.

Rondji Restaurant

Rondji Restaurant

After dinner we walked up (and I do mean UP) to the Elephant Restaurant for a new experience. In route, we came across a local family having a BBQ alongside the road.

Family roadside BBQ

Family roadside BBQ

Their view was of traffic and their music was bleating horns.

The Elephant Restaurant was lovely and also overlooked the ridge but from a different perspective. When the power went out (as happens without warning in Bali), we enjoyed it even more, lit only by candles while the staff used light from their phones to find, mix and serve. Ketut and Pasek picked us up on mopeds to whisk us home at the late hour of 9:30. It’s about all one can muster energy for when rising at 6:00.

Here’s a bit of Haiku I wrote regarding Bali mornings (for those unfamiliar, Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry written in sets of three lines…..5/7/5 syllables each line).

Roosters crow at dawn

Pushing through earplugs and doors

Fighting with songbirds


Roar go the cycles

Neighbors cough, kids cry, brooms swish

Day pushes on me


Mountains rise through mist

Rooftops lit by morning sun

OK, I arise


And so I did today, enjoying yoga and breakfast. Then off for a facial ($10), a manicure ($7) and a delightful environment and staff at Milano salon and spa.

A "selfie"

A “selfie”

He looked like he enjoyed himself

He looked like he enjoyed himself

Then a visit to Sherry’s where I hoped to participate in some of the “blessing” for the construction of her new home. Unfortunately, I was too late. I invite you to read about it on Sherry’s blog Writing for Self Discovery. However, I enjoyed a good visit with her and Julie before returning home for a cool down and massage. Here’s where the photos end.

Again, thank you for joining me.