After only three weeks in Australia, it was time to go. I met some amazing people and the land is beautiful! Unfortunately the adventure I went there for wasn't waiting for me. I have spent so much of my life giving people repeated attempts after they have shown me they really don't think much of me. It was always a case of what was said versus behaviour, and I kept trusting what was said and choosing to believe the best in people. I used to think the universe was trying to teach me forgiveness, so I forgave and gave them another chance. I realized this time that, though the forgiveness is important it was time for me to stop allowing people another opportunity to disrespect me. I can forgive someone and still walk away. After having this yelled at me from my inner self or true self, I decided to listen. I forgive, I carry no anger or resentment, I empathize with your situation and I understand your perspective but if you think your situation or mindset for any reason validates showing me disrespect, you are wrong and I am gone. It is amazing how many people I have allowed to repeatedly treat me poorly throughout my life because I was afraid to hurt their feelings. I made the best of my time in Australia and had some fun adventures. With an invitation to come to Bali and learn to surf, I booked a flight. I have to admit I was pretty glad to be met by a friendly face when I got off the plane. This also gave me an introduction to some local expats, slowly but surely expanding my introverted self's social network.
The next morning I got a scooter. I got my first motorcycle at 18. I'm comfortable on a bike and love riding. I parked my beautiful sportster 48 safely in a garage before I left and now I'm getting on a little 90cc honda scooter. I have never been on a scooter but really, everyone else can do it so I should be fine. There's really very little to do, I keep looking for controls that aren't there and I do find it odd to have my feet in front of me. The traffic was unreal, so much honking, no one follows any rules, it's just give way and take way. Your lane is not your lane and the painted lines on the road are simply there to show you the centre, they mean nothing. It was intimidating at first, narrow roads, people in your space, horns honking all around you, everyone splitting lanes. Once you get into the flow it's not so bad. When in doubt take the shoulder and stay with the pack. After a few days of following people around and trying to get orientated it was time to hit the open road, soon as I had some space I opened up the throttle and let that Honda go! There I was, cruising down the back road tearing through rice fields. Topping out at 80km/hr I've got a comfortable cruising speed of 60km/hr and it's glorious. That's right, I've traded in my braaap braaap for a little wheeer wheeer and I love it! This scooter goes everywhere. I've taken it off road, down sketchy dirt trails barely 30cm wide boardered by cliffs and creeks, up sidewalks, down beach trails and I'm pretty sure I rode down a trash heap disguised as a hill. If you get stuck just pick it up and move it. It has a little trunk under the seat and a console to hold water(that's what I use it for, It's bloody hot here). It's great for my day trips and mini adventures. I may get a little bike envy when I see people on the adorable Deus cafe racers they have here and I will be more thrilled than you can imagine when I get home and feel my beloved 48 between my legs again, but at $70/month I'll keep the scooter. 150km, 5 hrs, dirt, sun and smoke, you ride through a lot of fires on these back roads, finding my way on an island avoiding main roads as much as possible. It's not easy riding but it sure is fun.
Got the scooter, started exploring now, it's time to surf. Day 1, foam board, balance, stand up. Managed to get up and even turn amongst the royal ass whopping I got from the waves. Unfortunately the day left me with a few too many hours in the water laying on my board and I was burned. I never burn! Not beacause I'm invincible but because I am very cautious of my skins health and I protect it. Unfortunately I just out lasted my sunblock. I was exhausted, sore and bloody hot! I did my best to stay out of the sun for a few days and went and got myself a long sleeve SP50+ shirt and some long boardshorts. Armed with my fancy new sun protection I was ready for my second attempt. Graduated to a regular board, no more foamy for this girl, and honestly spent most of my time paddling. The surf was a bit shit but I did mange to get a couple waves and didn't get my ass kicked by the ocean nearly as much this time. I'm slowly getting paddle strong and I have found new muscles in my back. I'm ambitious and this is hard work, I will progress as best I can but it does not look as though I'll be going pro anytime soon. All this hard work deserves some therapy, in the form of a Bali massage.
At the recommendation of a friend I went to a traditional Balinese healer. There are no appointments and believe me Bali works on island time. The healer sits in his open pavilion and treats people in full visibility of others. I walked into the Courtyard and it was full locals and westerners all sitting around while Pak Sirkus worked on a client. You walk in sit down and Pak Sirkus will call you up when it's your turn, I sat down in the only shade I could find. It was yet another smouldering day and I was glad I brought my fan. I waited over two hours and watched him work on 8 people. The treatment isn't pleasurable but it is relieving. When it was my turn I sat down in front of Sirkus with my legs out stretched and feet toward him, I told him nothing of my pains. He uses this little wooden wand of sorts and lightly touches it between my toes. He somehow notices something, stops, tells my of my sciatica and squeezes the wand between my toes. This sends a pain through my body I want to recoil from. As I squirm Sirkus holds this longer just to ensure I fully understand how much this hurts at the same time this seems to satisfy some deep sadistic side to him as there's a glint in his eye and he smiles and laughs. He then reaches up twings a few nerves in my legs and tells me to lay down. He for some reason found my shirt hilarious and kept making comments about it, just a band shirt that said Stop/Go. I had watched him shove his hand right up the other women's shirts as he massages the sternum, he seemed to do the exact same things to men and women. At one point he sort of cupped my boob with his thumb and forefinger, his palm on my ribs and made a joke, I'm not sure what he said but he sure thought it was funny. WTF just happened? I told my friend after and she said he did the same thing to her but only the one time.. ok.. so this is normal? I'm certain he does not do this to the local women, I didn't see him do it to the women before me but I could have easily missed it I wasn't watching intently also my view was obstructed. He carried on with the treatment and I have to say, over all it was painfully pleasant as he moved through pressure points and at the end of it I had not a single pain left. That spot between my toes that hurt so much in the beginning felt no pain at the end when he squeezed the wand. I had immediate relief from the aches and pains I was experiencing. There is no cost to this it is all by donation at the shrine. So if you have the time to wait and don't mind risking a quick feel I highly recommend the experience.
This may not be the adventure I left home for. Nothing terribly exciting has occurred but I am trying new things, learning more about myself and most importantly I think I finally learned a lesson the universe has been trying to teach me for the last 38 years. That is pretty fucking epic.