I was lucky enough to spend cumulatively a little over a month working in Bali, and despite being overrun with tourists, I still found it to be kind of a magic place.
Tag Archives: travel
We must risk delight. We must have the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless furnace of the world.- Jack Gilbert
I’ve been thinking a lot about joy lately, especially as the current political climate continues to relentlessly break my heart, and since reading Naomi Klein’s ‘This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate’ has been giving me some restless nights. All I can figure is the only way to combat the phase we’re in now is to speak up where it matters, to love with more depth, to be even kinder, and to stubbornly enjoy every little moment of joy we can find. Sri Lanka provided the perfect opportunity to practice gladness, it really was a perfect 12 day trip.
What a whirlwind 2017 has been! I’ve been on the move constantly, living out of my backpack while balancing work or play in a different country every couple of weeks. It’s been a blast, but after three months of non-stop motion I’m finding myself a bit weary. As a remedy, I flew into Laos and immediately made my way to Nong Khiaw, a sleepy riverside town that perfectly matched my mood. After my first day this entire year spent alone, I finally got some much needed introvert recharge time, spending a lazy afternoon watching the Ou River meander past from a hammock on my hotel balcony. After a 10 hour long nights sleep, I finally feel rested enough to attempt to turn these half finished thoughts into some sort of a post.
My malay vacay, which is fun to say (hehe), kicked off with a little magic. Just as I was heading to bed there was an urgent knock on my door informing me that there was a nest of baby turtles hatching. I rushed next door to the Juara Turtle Project just in time to help transplant the hatchling hawksbills, and to watch them scramble towards the sea. There really is no cuter animal than a baby turtle, and as I walked back home shooting stars whizzed across the night sky. I couldn’t help but smile, little me on a little island floating in the South China Sea.
Rock steady baby, that’s what I feel nowwww. Well hello, dear family and friends that still have any interest in reading this. Can you believe I’ve been writing on this blog for 7 years? Here is a brief summary of what I’ve been doing: After two weeks cruising the classic tourist circuit around Cambodia, I spent a month working for Little Planet, an outdoor education company based in Tioman Island, Malaysia. A month flew by, spent mainly introducing groups of international private school students from Singapore to jungle trekking, kayaking, snorkeling and star gazing, as well as a detour to the wild jungles of Endau Rompin for a three day canoe trip and a field trip to Bali, where I learned how to mud wrestle men twice my size. A painful 22 hour flight later I was back in California in my happy place working another quick season for Naturalists at Large, and after flitting around California for two months I hopped back on a plane to return to Malaysia for the summer. And here I am, writing during a two week vacation, after a jam-packed June.
To make living itself an art, that is the goal. – Henry Miller
Now I know why many men have stopped and wept/ Halfway between the loves they leave and seek/ And wondered if travel leads them anywhere… -Leonard Cohen, Stranger Music
Early on while walking the camino I worried about returning home and feeling as if nothing had changed. After living back in sweet San Diego for four months, I can see that my dear friend Nicole was right: if you have changed, then so has everything else. I think about the camino and subsequent 10 day vipassana retreat I did almost immediately upon my return stateside nearly every day. As cheesy as it sounds, after a rough year in Brooklyn I think they somehow managed to restore my soul back to a more primitive state. If I carry anything from these experiences with me, it’s the importance of embracing each day- its pleasure and its challenges, while making others feel welcome and appreciating the company of those you’re with now.
A man sets out to draw the world. As the years go by, he peoples a space with images of provinces, kingdoms, mountains, bays, ships, islands, fishes, rooms, instruments, stars, horses and individuals. A short time before he dies, he discovers that the patient labyrinth of lines traces the lineaments of his own face. -Jorge Luis Borges
All growth is a leap in the dark. -Henry Miller
I last wrote during what I thought would be a temporary stop in the USA for bereavement, which somehow managed to turn into a year in New York City. Specifically, after puttering around my parent’s house in California for a few months I moved on a whim into a tiny bedroom in Crown Heights, Brooklyn for a chance at an adventure in the big city with the bright lights. Thanks to a wonderful childhood friend I worked the first couple months at the front desk of a bougie gym in Midtown, and spent my free time visiting all the sights that good tourists are supposed to see while happily subsisting on bagels and greasy slices of pizza. Eventually, I was hired for a ten month contract position at a non-profit in East New York to work on implementing a new healthy food initiative, a position that will come to an end in only ten more days.
In traveling, a companion, in life, compassion. -Haruki Murakami
My love for San Pedro de Atacama started before I even arrived. Shortly after leaving Salta we cruised through the Argentinian salt flats for a free tour of sorts before making our ascent over the Andes. I saw my first llama somewhere around hour five and my level of excitement was definitely inappropriate, especially since it only increased with each new llama spotted. I passed ten hours contented, gazing out the window while counting cacti and listening to music, feeling grateful and absolutely enamored with this big beautiful world we live in.
Three weeks exploring the jungles in Honduras around Lago de Yojoa, getting scuba certified on Utila Island, and diving in Belize. I really should have taken more pictures.