As we approached our last weekend on Bali, we realised we’d only managed to visit the beach once in our entire five months there. Both of us had been so busy on our various projects that we’d had little time off, and Ubud kept us more than entertained for the leisure time we did have. In fact, aside from our trip to the Gilis and Village Above the Clouds, we hadn’t left the town for more than a day trip. This is madness for a girl who loves beaches and is living on an island so when the final weekend came, we decided we really had to visit the coast – we were, after all, about to head back to a very cold UK! We debated heading to Amed, but finally decided on the Bukit peninsula, in particular the surf beach, Balangan. Here are some photos from our trip:
I wrote this post a few months ago in Ubud but never got round to publishing it. It, and its conclusion next week, will be the last of the “Don’t knock it til you’ve tried it” series, at least for the time being.
My trip to the applied kinesiologist inspired a rage inside that surprised me. I felt furious, and I couldn’t say for sure why. Was it because he gave me a diagnosis I didn’t want to hear? Or was it because I was mad at him for giving me a prescription based on something so seemingly ludicrous?
If I knew for sure that applied kinesiology (AK) was a quack job then the latter would be easy to go with, but I don’t know that so I’m left with a lingering “what if?”. What if there is something to what he said? Read more
“Where’s home for you now?” said Olly as we strolled along the South Bank, catching up on almost 20 month’s absence on a path we’ve walked countless times before.
It’s one of my favourite places in London, the walk from London Bridge to Waterloo along the river, past Borough Market, St.Paul’s, the Tate, the theatres and with Big Ben glowing in the distance.
When I was at university, riding the bus across the river at night filled me with awe at the magnificence of the city and the millions of lives that breathed within it. I was one of those lives. I called the city home for ten years and it still holds a house in my name and is the city I know the best. It’s where I chose to step out alone and build my own life. I love it, but would I call it home? Read more
Last week, we told you about a special place to stay in Bali’s central highlands, a village suspended in the island’s quieter days before the tourism boom. The Village Above the Clouds is one of the most peaceful places we’ve ever stayed. As we said in our last post, it’s a place where you feel like you’re a guest of the village not just the hotel, and that point was made clear when a group of sisters invited us into her home. Read more
As soon as I saw the Village Above the Clouds website, I knew we had to go there. I’d found it while searching for eco-hotels in Bali and it was the most charming and visually stunning one I came across. A few weeks later, I chanced across the owner at one of the many workshops I’ve been to in Ubud and he told me some more about the village where the hotel sits, and the school he’d started there. It was the obvious choice for our road trip away from Ubud, and I couldn’t wait to see it for myself. Read more
A lot of people complain about the tourism in Bali, and it’s fair enough. The proliferation of guesthouses and villas that are quickly filling the rice fields and shorelines of the island is alarming and painful to watch – and the traffic is abominable. Ubud is one of the places that has been hit particularly hard, and what we hear was a quiet town is now teeming with tour buses and endless vendors vying to make a buck from the tourist dollar. We’ve gotten used to it, and managed to carve a life behind the tourism screen in what is still a richly cultural and beautiful town.
However, many visitors to Bali never get past the initial shock of tourism, traffic and touts, and leave believing the island has been ruined. It’s likely these people never got beyond Ubud, Kuta and some of the other “must sees” of the island. We wish they’d ventured to Central Bali… Read more
“You don’t like it there, do you?” said my aunt on the phone one day. I can see why she thought it. My posts on Ubud have been a little heavy on the navel-gazing, which doesn’t always make for lighthearted stories. But our life here has been much more than all the “Don’t knock it til you’ve tried it” experiments. Here’s a little taste of what it’s like to be a digital nomad in Ubud. And my answer to my aunt: “How could I not?”. Read more
I woke up that morning, fed up and tired with this journey. The rats had returned to the ceiling, causing another disrupted night’s sleep while they played gymnastics above our heads, the thin plaster amplifying their patter to the sound of elephants’ hooves. Tonight we’d have to re-plug in the sonic repeller, pushing aside any worries about its effects on our consciousness. Sleep was more important.
Without sleep, everything feels heavier. A glorious day turns bleak and infuriation gives rise to the unreasonable. “Maybe we need to find another house, or maybe it would be easier to just go home earlier?” “Let’s look into it.” Read more
Barcelona can’t help but be a city we love. It’s where we first got together on on fateful trip that started as a couple of friends back in 2008. Since then, we’ve both lived in the city for stretches of time and it’s home to some of our favourite people. We’ll be returning next year for a couple of months when Steve works with our friend’s post-production studio on the final stages of Continuum, but in the meantime, here are some photos from our most recent trip. They’re a little whistle stop tour of the places we love. Read more
You may be starting to wonder if I’m going to come across something I don’t enjoy in this series – well here’s the first one.
It started badly with a gaze that lasted too long. You know the type. You say your hellos and then they proceed to look deep into your eyes, nodding their head slightly, perhaps with a little ‘hmmmm’, as if to acknowledge some inscrutable truth that’s been passed between you. I’m all up for eye contact, but the lingering’s a step too far. Read more