I’m Here…Body, Mind And Spirit…

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PeaceWeek two in Bali and what an incredible week it’s been.  I now feel grounded here, happy and at peace.  I haven’t felt like this in years… I feel myself stepping into my power again…into the light…and it feels great!

My awesome week started Sunday May 26th when I had my first (this trip) Chakra Dhara massage at Bali Botanica Day Spa!  These massages are D I V I N E.  Two and a half hours of pure body bliss.  One hour of massage on the back of your body, one hour of massage on the front of your body, fifteen minutes of warm oil drizzling on your third eye chakra where you float off to another world.  Then sitting on a backless chair with your feet soaking in warm water with rose petals while the therapist massages your head, neck, shoulders, and back once again.  All this for around NZD$65!

It was so lovely to be pampered.  To feel the hot oil being drizzled on my body and then lovingly massaged in.  To be honoured at the end with a prayer and a “Namaste” (the spirit in me honours the spirit in you)…that part always gets me…tears running down my cheeks…grateful, happy tears :).

Monday was shopping, Sari Organik for lunch and a lovely foot massage on the way back…

Sari Organik is in the middle of the rice field’s in Ubud.  It’s about a 2km walk up a lane and along a well worn path to get there.  Because we had biked from home and didn’t know how good the track would be we decided to leave our bikes at the back of one of the shops just at the start of the lane.  The owner of the shop was happy to take us by motorbike (for a small charge) to the café which was fantastic!

I was, however, blown away by the amount of construction that has gone on, and continues to go on in this beautiful part of Ubud.  Villa’s, small hotels and new cafe’s have started springing up everywhere!  Two years ago it was still relatively untouched, with beautiful views of the rice paddies.  Now it’s hard to get a nice picture without getting some sort of building in the way.  It has to stop.  There’s no infrastructure here for all this development.  It’s going to be the ruin of Bali.  Ubud does not need MORE accommodation or food places…there’s plenty already.

Money and greed.  The farmers sell their land and get paid a large sum of cash.  They no longer have to toil in the rice fields all day every day.  But before too long the money is gone and then they have no way to earn a living…in the meantime the Western buyer of the land is making big bucks from his new hotel or living the good life in his swanky new villa!

Ranting over…lunch was lovely.  It always is at Sari, and it was so nice to take my time and not have to rush away again as I’ve had to the last two visits I’ve had there when I was on retreat and sticking to a schedule.

Taking a break

We wandered back along the lane, checking out a couple of ‘shops’  along the way.  Taking our photo with a lovely old Balinese man who was resting from his toil in the rice paddies, or waiting for Bule (bu-lay) – white person, to come along and take his picture and give him some money :)…much easier than toiling in the fields!

On our way back we came across a new spa place.  It was lovely.  Separate treatment rooms over water, linked by a central walkway, also over water.  We decided to treat ourselves (as you do) and had a half hour foot massage.  It was great!  Then back to our bikes and the long uphill cycle home…

Tuesday was relax at home day…I worked on blogs and wasted time on Facebook 🙂

Wednesday was art day! We headed into town for lunch but it ended up being really rushed and disappointing.  We met out art teacher, Nyoman Suarsa (it’s his picture as the feature image for this post) at his shop in central Ubud where he picked us up and took us to his studio, which was a lovely 15 minute drive away.  It was a bonus seeing another part of Ubud and not having to pay a taxi or guide to see it!

The Artist's Way

Nyoman was a great teacher.  He gave us good sized canvases which he’d glued rice paper to, to give them more texture, and then he set to work showing us some techniques to use for our masterpieces.

It was so much fun and I finally created a piece of art!  My first ever painting experience!  I will definitely play more with this when I get home.


Art Magic

Thursday was Magic Universe day!  Last week my friend Zivana sent me information about a competition that was running for the Green Supercamp at the Bali Green School.  First prize is a full scholarship ($3000) to the week long Supercamp and there are two prizes of 1/2 scholarships ($1500).

It has been a dream of mine since I met Yogi in 2011 to (somehow) send him to the Bali Green School, and so I entered  the competition.  I had to write up to 400 words (I managed 398) as to why I thought Yogi deserved to go to the Supercamp.  So I poured my heart into this piece of writing (easy to do) and sent it off, visualising that night as I went to sleep, Yogi having the time of his life at the camp.

So, Thursday morning, as is my usual morning ritual, I opened my emails to find one from the Director of the Supercamp to say she had some great news for me and needed to contact me! OMG, OMG!!  I was so excited, my heart pounding as I emailed her my phone number here in Bali.  An hour later she called me to say I had won a 1/2 scholarship for Yogi!

She is such a lovely woman and I told her I would get hold of Yogi as soon as I could to see if he was ok to go to the camp.  So with that I phoned Ketut (the Manager of the Yayasan where Yogi goes and where I taught in 2011) and told him the story and that I would email him through the info and could he please go and see Yogi and find out if he wanted to go.  That done, I just had to wait…

Thursday night was networking time!  It’s funny, when I was still in NZ and thinking of my trip to Bali this time, I had the intention that it was going to be about getting more in touch with myself, who I am, where to from here and also being open to any opportunities that came my way.  Well, Thursday night opened up one of those opportunities.

It was a networking and event presentation at Villa Gaia which was about 5km away from where we are staying.  We organised with our lovely friend Nyoman, who owns a local café and delivers food to us, to be our taxi for the evening to get us there.

Nyoman - who feeds and taxi's us!

Nyoman – who feeds and taxi’s us!

Nyoman and his cousin Wayan picked us up at 6.30pm and drove us on the back of their motorbikes to Villa Gaia.

It was so fab to be on the back of a motorbike again.  So easy, so freeing!  The night was magical…coconut trees silhouetted against the night sky, stars, insense, warm evening air.  I was blissed out…closing my eyes and just being in the moment…along for the ride, seeing, feeling, smiling from ear to ear…the simple things in life 🙂

The evening at Villa Gaia was fab.  There was a talk and group activity by Cynthia Connop and Ernst Dams from Living Love.  It was awesome.  Plus the chance to network and meet people.

Friday was divine bliss day!  Today I had my first ever Watsu session in a beautiful spa setting.

Taksu 1

Magical. Heaven. Keith (the facilitator), is so gifted, tuned in and trusting.  What is Watsu?  Well, it’s like shiatsu, yoga, stretching, and dance all rolled into one which is done in a heated pool (not a problem here in Bali). The facilitator ‘holds’ you in the water and slowly and deliberately moves you through the water and stretches you (where the shiatsu and yoga comes in).  Emotions and visuals pop up, move through you and release…it’s an amazing experience that completely blew me away.  I was so in the ‘zone within myself’ and blissed out afterwards. I felt like I’d been on retreat for a week :).

Takus 2

Saturday was relax, write, eat, drink day!  Christine left about lunchtime to go to town and I stayed behind to chill out and stay in the ‘zone’ from the previous day.  I started doing some writing and then got hungry so had a leisurely walk up the road to a local warung and had a lovely lunch of sate chicken, salad and chips with a fresh lemon drink – yummo!  I was just cruising, taking my time, such a luxury from usual life of rushing here, rushing there, only having 1/2 hour for lunch at work and then back into it.  It feels strange to take your time…to take as long as you want…

I had a slow, leisurely walk back home, taking in my surroundings, sated, happy.  I finished the writing I was doing, emails, blog, etc. and by then it was around 5pm…time for a Bintang!  So I headed two properties down to Villa Sugar (accommodation/food place) and brought myself two small Bintangs…headed home, set my music playing, cracked the top off the first bottle and lay in the hammock blissed out once again!


So all in all an A W E S O M E week…I feel I’ve arrived – in more ways than one :0)…


Retreats in Bali 2015:

Women’s Retreat – feed your senses…feed your soul…

Writer’s Retreat

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  1. Karen Odell says:

    It all sounds so magical what you are experiencing, it just makes you want to jump on a plane and meet you over there. Especially with the earthquakes that we are experiencing at the moment. You are in the most perfect place Paula, and congratulations on the scholarship as well. Love Karen

    • Thanks Karen, yes it certainly is a magical time…it’s great to be back :)…have had a couple of quakes here too which is scary in such unfamiliar surroundings…thinking of you all back in Welly for sure…take care and see you when I’m back x

  2. Hey Paula, so glad you have arrived too. Well done on everything. It sounds like you are having a ball and in the flow. Well done and keep us posted! and congrats again on the scholarship!
    xxx Andrea

  3. What a beautiful week Paula. The massage sounds divine and I felt your thrill when Yogi won the scholarship. It’s amazing what happens when you let go and trust in the universe.

    • Thanks Jan, yep, that first week was very FULL of so many special moments…and they’ve continued…My ‘word’ for 2013 is TRUST and exactly as you said – it’s amazing what happens when you let go and do just that :)x

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