Sunday, March 2, 2014

Black Beetle Night

I'm woken by the dragging of a wheelie bin or the thrum of a hippy's moped as they make their way to morning yoga. That's if the local rooster hasn't started his morning call before all this happens. The sheets are soft and the teak doors leave the room with an earthy, sandalwood scent. I try and ignore the gentle hum of the air conditioner, my one luxury from the western world that is making a comfortable night bliss. Set to a reasonable 19 degrees, light duvet provides more comfort. The pillows are huge and cocoon me through the night.

I've had the best sleep I've had in months since I've been here. Going to bed early in the evening, sleeping through until this Indonesian version of Foghorn Leghorn decides that the neighbourhood should be woken. Bali, being a Hindu island is great - in other parts of Indonesia I'd be woken by the man in the minaret and his blasted tannoy.

On waking, it all about deciding what to do with the day. Yoga? Pilates? Mediation? Massage? Swim? Read. I've been here four days now and I haven't done much more than this. The days start with breakfast at the communal table. I've been making it to the 8.30 class next door - Pilates, is my drug of choice. I like Pilates - it doesn't threaten me like yoga.

After a swim after class it's deciding whether to lay on my day bed and read, or go to the swimming poll and read (between swimming or a bit) Then there's the afternoon massage. More swimming, following by lunch at the café next door.

Surprisingly, or maybe not so surprisingly, I've unwittingly turned vegetarian since I've been here.

The café at the Yoga Barn is all things blessedly hippy. Vegetarian, vegan, macrobiotic, ayurvedic... There are juices and raw vegan fare, scared raw vegan ice cream (which was absolutely amazing stuff - say she the ice cream junkie) I'm eating around the menu at the moment - it's all wonderful, but the Tofu and Veggie Burger is just divine. What ever the meal, it's washed down with a date and almond shake - with lots of ginger, vanilla and coconut.

Glorious food. If all vegetarian food was like this I'd happily stay vegetarian. Being an organic place helps as well You can feel the goodness permeate your being with every mouthful.

After lunch, more reading and swimming, maybe another yoga class. Slowly, my fear of my own body is abating and I'm learning to love the stretches and the sensations that yoga is allowing me to feel.

They also have some amazing evening classes here - I've completely zonked out to Crystal Bowl Meditations, the Tibetan Bowl Mediation was more about the experience and staying in silence. Tonight, I think I have to read and maybe write. There is a lot being processed at the moment.

And then to bed. A gin and tonic my sleeping draft of choice. Tanqueray 10, though lovely, is not quite Hendricks. Never to mind, one must not bicker over premium gin.

I wonder if the beetles will return soon. As a child, once or twice a year on really humid nights just before thunderstorms, we used to be inundated with black beetles. They only came out on these nights, once or twice a year. The beetles used to scare me. Where were they at other times? Why did they only come out before the storms?

Yesterday I found the largest black beetle I've ever seen on my front porch. Huge - about five centimetres in length. It didn't scare me in the slightest. I wasn't even too startled when we found a snake in the tree by the pool. Ah, it's Bali...

I wonder what the storms will be like, and I long for the rain. I'm waiting.

Ubud, for all it's shabbiness and alternative nature, is a healing place. I'm waiting for the rains to come and cleanse me. I'm waiting for the thunder to provide advice. I wait for the lightning to give me a spark to send me on a new direction.

Ubud's a bit like that. You grow as required, change and required and allowing your other self to flourish.

It's hard recognising myself. I just know that I need to be here at the moment. And I wish I could stay longer.

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