What a month it has been!
I finally got to do tons of traveling that I’d envisioned I’d do as a nomad.
Don’t get me wrong. I have loved being in Bali and settling in, but there is something so special about not having a home base and just winging it.
I don’t know what I’m doing tomorrow, or what I’m eating for lunch for that matter.
It’s the most freeing, exciting feeling.
For some, that might be anxiety provoking. Yet, there is this stable guiding force within me that isn’t anxious one bit. It knows that I’ll figure it out.
That there is always a villa, a guest house, or a friend’s place to crash waiting for me.
This adventure is the definition of nomad.
I gave myself a mission: one big backpack, a large over-the-shoulder purse and a motorbike.
The rest of my stuff, I stowed away in Justine’s (my Bali fairy godmother) storage closet.
With a rain seal, I put the bag on my back and rode two hours north on my small Scoopy motorbike.
This was an accomplishment in it of itself because 6 short months ago, I was afraid to be in the front seat of the bike.
Never would I ever have thought that I’d be so confident riding a scooter on the windy, narrow Bali roads.
Also remember they drive on the other side of the street!
It just goes to show that our minds are really the only thing that limit us.
Buttttt she ain’t limiting me anymore! (Well, at least in the motorbike aspect...:) )
I made it safely to the glamping site in Munduk, Bali, Indonesia, and immediately I never wanted to leave.
It is weird to think that I was completely oozing in sweat in Southern Bali and then after driving two hours to Munduk I was so cold I had to throw on pants and a sweater.
I wore long sleeve shirts and pants every day in the northern jungle.
I literally had to dust off my warmer clothes and they were delighted to finally be taken for a spin after a year and a half!
This was the closest I have gotten to fall weather in over a year. Thanks Northern Bali!
The tents were amazing. Comfortable. Homey. In the complete middle of nature.
The nights got reeeeaaal cold. So I slept in socks and curled up with lots of layers.
The bathrooms were SO clean and hygienic.
If you know me, you know that this is the most important thing really.
If a place doesn’t have a good bathroom, I’m out. I judge you on your bathroom.
This only reaaallly applies to accommodations.
Like ya girl can pop a squat wherever….especially here in Asia when you have to. Yet… obvi I prefer a stellar bathroom with the infamous BUM GUNS (water hoses to cleanse yourself) here in Indonesia.
An ingenious invention really, still confused on how the US doesn’t have them yet.
The showers were hot and steamy, and became my favorite nighttime pastime.
I never had to leave if I didn’t want to because there was a delicious restaurant (where I practically tried everything on the menu), a gorgeous yoga shala, and a secret waterfall trek.
I loved it here so much that I stayed an extra two nights, and I found myself back there a month later for a DJ music event!
I’m like the newest glamping resident — they can’t get rid of me even if they tried.
Just swinging in the hammock... "uh excuse me miss, there are other people trying to check into your room. Can you please leave the premises?"
This didn't actually happen....but with the amount of hammock time I had and how much I loved the place...it could have hahaha.
While I was up in the jungle, I filled my days with all of the activities: I went hiking through the jungle around two scenic twin lakes, saw a temple on the water, and went strawberry picking.
A wonderfully relaxing, yet adventurous couple of days.
Through this all, I accidentally made a very controversial TikTok that blew up.
The story behind it all is that while I was at the temple on the lake, I saw a huge group of Indonesian tourists.
One man who was walking by kept whispering to his family, “melihat…bule!” Which means, “look a foreigner!”
He was so intrigued that the family asked to take some photos and videos with me.
I felt like a local celebrity.
I had so much fun with the family, and the whole situation was amusing to me, so I jokingly made a TikTok about how some people from Indonesia get excited to see foreigners.
It blew up and got backlash because numerous people were saying that:
Basically people were telling me that I was insensitive to the culture and that I didn’t recognize my white privilege.
Instead of getting reactive, I tried to listen and be really understanding.
This was a good learning lesson!
I finally got the chance to hear local voices to expand my knowledge and perspective.
I never meant to be an ignorant white person, so it was my time to be quiet and listen.
Due to this controversial TikTok, I decided to take a new approach to TikTok and make more videos that relate to culture and mindfulness.
It’s blowing up. With over 13k followers now on that platform, I am excited to be connecting to locals in a new way.
This is exactly what my Community & Nonprofit Leadership major was about— not going into a foreign space and thinking you know what’s best for the people and land.
It’s about taking the back seat, asking questions, and learning from the people who grew up in the culture.
Then, you can start to make real change.
I don’t know what real change I am making yet.
But perhaps, I am shining light on how to let go of the tourist ego and merge into a culture to learn from local people on the ground.
I’m curious to see how this keeps unfolding and what other lessons I’ll learn.
After my northern jungle trip, I popped down to Ubud for a Pranic Healing Course.
This is an internationally recognized certification to clear negative energy from someone’s aura.
There are lots of techniques to feel and clear someone’s aura, and truthfully, I was shocked at how amazingly it works.
I was a bit skeptical until I started practicing on people and I was actually helping to clear some of their ailments.
Ubud is one of the most spiritual places I’ve ever been.
It’s almost like this spiritually charged utopia with deliciously healthy food and people who believe deeply in the universe.
With only two weeks there, I could feel my own spirituality rise as I started to get in touch with a new side of myself--one that feels more in touch with energies and vibrations.
I buy 5 mini crystals and look what happens ;)
In all seriousness, it does feel like a veil has lifted into a new realm.
I am calmer.
I trust that everything is serving me in the highest good.
I have more of a grasp on what truly matters: joy, love, connection.
This course was the catalyst of validating myself and gaining more confidence in this life path that I am living.
Any way, for the month of June, I am offering donation-based healing sessions to practice my skills (in return for a testimonial :) ). If you are interested, you can book a time slot with me. Feel free to reach out with any questions about this process.
After my healing course, I bopped over to Nusa Penida by fast boat to get yet another certification—my Advanced Diving Certification.
With 3 days of diving, I saw mantas, a mola mola, and tons of insanely beautiful coral.
It was so exciting because finally by the end I saw all of the practice paying off.
I had the most perfect dive…I was chill and floating through the water with the right weight and buoyancy.
This in it of itself is mindblowing to me. Just a short while ago, I was afraid of going into the vast ocean because I was nervous what the heck I would find.
Or what would find me for that matter.
Now, I'm diving in without any fear and just enjoying looking at what's around me.
The wetsuits help. I feel so protected in the long wetsuits.
It's almost like "hey jellyfish try to get me now!"
Throw me into the ocean without a long wetsuit and I'm toast. Fear takes over. The whole game is completely changed just by a little bit of fabric.
I can see the addiction of diving though. I already can’t wait for the next trip!
*cough* Komodo Island I'm coming for you *cough*
Besides Diving, Nusa Penida is filled with tons of infamous, instagrammable spots.
For example, we hiked down to the world renown Kelingking Beach.
I was pleased that it lived up to its hype as it is most definitely is up there for one of the most glorious beaches on the planet.
The view from above speaks for itself.
The trek down you scale rocks while holding onto wooden rails.
Definitely not for the faint of heart, but also not as scary as I imagined either.
Just save some energy for the way up, bring down tons of water, and give your thighs some lovin’ the day after.
(Don't have to tell me twice to find a reason to book a massage!)
George Lucas, one of the directors of Star Wars, definitely used Nusa Penida as inspiration from the film. Probably. Don't quote me on it. :)
It's just that this island feels like a different planet with its unique terrain.
I’ve never seen anything like it.
Just seeing the island from afar by boat is invigorating due to both the views and the seasickness. :)
Here I am trying to embody an ~angel~ at Angel’s Billabong. Another iconic spot!
It’s been an amazing month being a nomad.
There is so much to relay and share with you about all of my adventures this month that I couldn’t fit it all into this newsletter, so I will have to stop here.
I know, I know! Don't be sad!
It just means you will have to be on the edge of your seat for a bit until the next newsletter.
I always love a good cliffhanger. :)
As per usual, I have loved connecting with you, and I hope you enjoyed following my journey this month.
I've been doing a choose your own adventure on Instagram (@ohtheplacesyoullflow_) where I post polls on what I should do next.
It's been so fun to engage with you all that way, so keep following along and help me choose my journey!
Loads of items are in the works as well--vlogs, blogs, new website updates, new offerings, all of the thaaaangs— so stay tuned.
All of the love to you!