Next stop was to be surrounded by beautiful oceans, swimming pools – blue, blue water. To get to Nusa Lembongan (one of the Islands), we shoved our shoes into a wet vegetable crate, handed our luggage to the willing and helpful ferry staff, waded into the sea and hopped aboard one of the many speed-boat taxi’s to our next stop of the holiday. The boat trip is well worth a mention, as it came with onboard entertainment – a flat screen TV showing a film where I think every cast member eventually got shot or beaten by the end of our 20 minute trip.
Luckily, this did not set the tone for the second half of our holiday, where we quickly slipped into ‘relax-mode’! The way this trip was designed was incredibly clever and perfect indeed. Think of how you feel just before a vacation, and the few days in? Kind of like the road-runner on a caffeine? A bit sleep-deprived from excitement, from stress (did I forget something?), and guilt (I’m being paid a salary, how can I take a holiday?), etc. The best way out of this is always to keep busy, and run around packing 3 weeks worth of site-seeing into the 3 hours after you land. This is why starting in Ubud was great. There was lots to do and see, and a fair amount organised for us (without packing 3 weeks worth of site-seeing into the 3 hours after you land) – and we learnt to slowly wind down, while staying present, and absorbing the experience, the moment and getting to know each other a bit better. This really got us into what I don’t think I’ve felt since maybe I was 12: ‘Holiday Mode’!
Starting off with chill-time at one (of two!) swimming pools, and a mandatory reflexology massage (Massages are cheap in Bali, so it was great to stash any shopping thoughts away and have regular pamper time) – we planned how little we were planning on doing for the next few days!
In and amongst the ‘doing very little’ came some great mastery too. After years of watching people do various versions of headstands / handstands / anystandsnotonfeet and thinking how cool it looked (and never considering doing it myself), at the end of a yoga-class, Bianca, Sharni’s Yoga Angel showed me how to do it. The best, best feeling ever! The next bit of mastery was something I have ALWAYS wanted to do: Learn to SUP. One of the most fantastic mornings. Even though the sea got a bit choppy due to some crazies riding a big inflatable banana towed by a speed-boat, and a wind kept sweeping us away from where we were going (and that my board had only one fin), I.did.not.fall.off.once. We even got to do a bit of Yoga on our boards, in the clear blue, blue water and it was simply blissful.
It was at this stage that I also realised that I had stopped really bothering about my ‘mincing’ hair (throw away your GHD in Bali… Too much humidity and swimming!). And bugger the makeup too! I think that slid off sometime in Ubud and with it the notion that I needed it. Along with embracing my inner-child with all the new and fun things I learnt to do, I also embraced my looks, and the person that I am. Another wonderful thing!
As this post gets way too long, and I plan to finish up with part 4 – about all the things I learnt, I’d like to end with what struck me the most about this part of the holiday:-
There is nothing as humbling as achieving things you never thought possible.
Isn’t that ironic and beautiful!