Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Back in Australia....

I've made some changes since my last blog. That's the nature of this world. Change, impermanence, transition. I am in Australia after a great 18months in Bali. Why? Well I needed to reconnect with things Australian for a while: the night sky, the beaches, the spring flowers, the wonderful libraries. And of course to see friends and family for longer than a brief visit.
Because Bali is so near to the equator you can't really see a lot of stars at night, although the beaches can be lovely they can't compare with the amazing beaches in Australia, the flowers too are more tropical generally and of course you don't get many varieties that are common in spring in Australia. Libraries are another thing that is missing in Bali to a large extent. There are few and they are limited. Bali doesn't have a reading culture so that most Balinese wouldn't read more than a newspaper and that would generally be men. There are exceptions of course but the general population do not read books.
Before I left Bali a newspaper in Australia decided to write a profile on me and when I arrived back it was published.
I have also started dating again. More of that in a later blog.... 

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The quack of dawn

Ducks (bebek) are in the newly harvested rice paddies I see from my room in Ubud, Bali, and each morning their gentle splashing and quacking drifts into my awareness with the dawn light. The ducks are so comical as they are herded into the selected paddy with their brisk wobbly run, long necks outstretched. Some have punk topknots to distinguish them along with the white and black ones which set them apart from the usual brown.

The harvest has taken place over the past few days with birds being chased from the grain as it reached maximum ripeness before the rice was finally cut and threshed by conical hatted women. Scarecrows are gone from the field now. Moved to another soon to be harvested paddy.

Verdant fields of emerald green topped with gold have been transformed into yellow stubble and reflection filled paddies. Fringed with coconut palms with a backdrop of mountains to the west I can watch the sunset each day.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Visa for Bali and friends

In Bali there are several kinds of Indonesian visa and mine means I have to leave the country every six months. So I've just been back to Australia where I was delighted to be able to explore Perth and Freo for the first time. Just loved the diversity and originality of Freo shops and environs. The volcanic ash from South America resulted in my flight being canceled so I had more time to explore.

Now back in Bali the rice is being harvested. More about that in a later post.....

In 1998 I was in India and made a good friend while I was there. She and her partner are going to visit me soon in Bali. It's interesting what binds you in friendship and we have supported each other in good times and bad in many ways. I am in awe of her abilities. She is an example of how to change your life in a positive way. We have followed our dreams to a better life. We are not young but we are young at heart. AND we are living proof of my own personal motto - risk a little live a lot!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Even more simplicity

The process of simplifying my life continues. India was the place where I sought out a wise man to reassure me that my yearnings were not selfish fantasies. Then my travels took me to Bali, Thailand, Vietnam and back to Australia then back to Bali again before my dreams started to become a reality.

Painful and long though the whole process proved to be, it was a journey that made me face the truth about my life. To examine the philosophy of Buddhism, of great thinkers, and to really step out of my comfort zone. It resulted in a book that not only looks at the process of travel in the world but also of travel in the inner world of the mind.

What has made us the way we are? What were the years that formed us like? How did our parents live and what was different? These are some of the things that I reflected on. Have you ever thought about these things?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Depression excerpt

"Many people get depressed in their later years as they look back on lives with some regrets and sadness at their lack of skill to deal with some elements of their lives. I have a friend who is depressed in Australia at the moment. I don’t know how to help him.
The teacher is saying that depression is not sadness. It is the dwelling on sadness that is depression. This simple fact is one of the best descriptions of depression I have heard. I wonder why, when we all feel sad sometimes, and choose to dwell the sadness sometimes causing brief periods of depression, some dwell on it continuously, causing major depression. It may be a choice. I know that myself. We can choose what we think about. I think back to my brief period of depression some months ago and I know I made a choice to have a pity party. It became tedious and boring, and made me feel stupid and weak. "
 This excerpt from my book is about clarifying sadness from depression. It gave me a better understanding of minor depression although clinical depression is different.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Trust excerpt

"Trusting those close to me is important. To me it’s the foundation of a good relationship of any kind. How do you trust someone close to you when they have betrayed that trust in the most brutal way? My husband betrayed me, which lead to our separation. Now I couldn’t regain the trust I had once had in him. Oh it hadn’t been an infidelity, at least not that I knew of, but another kind of trust that he had broken.
Trust is sometimes the elephant in the room, because often we don’t completely define it for our friends, our lovers, our families, or colleagues. We sometimes assume that others know what is meant by “I trust you”.
This is the second in a series of excepts from my book. What does trust mean to you?