Back to Indonesia — 2014, Twelve Years Later

Today, I started writing in my travel journal again. It turned out that back in 2013, in February, I had written about the kujang, a weapon used by the people of Java, in Indonesia. 

It so happens that my next flight will be a flight that takes me on my first international excursion in nine months, and it is back to Hong Kong and Indonesia for me. For some that may not be a long drought. For me it is.

And to return to a special island, Bali, is a necessary and much needed beginning to my commitment to a life of travel.  

Depression, a break up with my girlfriend, and some work challenges have kept me from going anywhere in a self-willed way for many months, but I finally was able to break free.

I leave for Hong Kong on Tuesday. After a one night layover, where I will enjoy “Tuna Ceviche Night” and authentic snake wine from China at my buddy Mike’s house, I get on another plane to head to Jakarta and then the island of Bali. 

I have not been to Bali since 2003, almost 12 years ago. I can’t even believe it’s been that long. I was there with my girlfriend of long ago, who took us there for Easter vacation, when we both lived in Hong Kong. 

We stayed in Ubud for a couple of nights, and then moved up to the northern part of the island, in Seririt, where we could look out from our reflecting pool perch at the dark blue Bali Sea. 

I’m going back to the norther again, to Seririt. This time, to be alone and to listen to gamelan music, rent a moped and get further into the misty and green jungle hills that cover the more Muslim northern coast of Bali.

I think that after traveling the two days it will take to get there, I will have more to write, more to reflect on. This is the calibration part of the trip. I need to go to somewhere I have been before, make peace with the Hindu gods of travel on that island, and find out what the year might hold in store for me.

It will be a good exercise to sit down and figure out the year’s plan — to at least get a horizon in place, so that I can think of what I want to conquer and what I want to challenge myself to do, and to think about what I want to experience and derive pleasure from.

So much of my year has been about reacting to things around me, and it has left me feeling de-centralized.

Let’s see what Tuesday brings.  

Back to London

I leave for London in two weeks. I will fly the overseas route on British Airways for the first time. I am returning to spend a significant amount of time, the first time I’ve done this in 12 years. 

When I look at the photos on Airbnb of the flats and the neighborhoods, nostalgia hits me. I recognize the places. I feel the cold wet air by the Thames again. I see flits of memories from so long ago. I am not from London, but it does feel like I am getting ready to go home. 

stellasnotastar said: ok i don't know if we have shark diving but you should go to Namibia there's plenty safari's, game drives to go to!! it's a beautiful country. x

Thanks for this great suggestion. My girlfriend just flew to London on a British Airways plane that had just been to Cape Town. She emailed me dozens of examples from the magazine on the plane. really excited. 

best-images-travel-locations:

The kujang is a blade weapon native to the Sundanese people of West Java, Indon

best-images-travel-locations:

The kujang is a blade weapon native to the Sundanese people of West Java, Indon

This happened after crashing over 25-foot waves to get to the calmer side of the island. A female humpback whale resting after giving birth. We crept up right to this point, and then let her rest. 

This happened after crashing over 25-foot waves to get to the calmer side of the island. A female humpback whale resting after giving birth. We crept up right to this point, and then let her rest. 

As I get closer to my international trips, I always spend a few hours each week answering emails and looking out the window at aircraft that show up on my FlightRadar app. During certain times of the day it’s kind of relaxing seeing how many planes are coming in from Europe, Asia and Canada. 

As I get closer to my international trips, I always spend a few hours each week answering emails and looking out the window at aircraft that show up on my FlightRadar app. During certain times of the day it’s kind of relaxing seeing how many planes are coming in from Europe, Asia and Canada. 

To London — And Onward, to Turkey

Looks like I will  be spending a week in London and then taking my holiday to Turkey. 

Whales

Whales are great.

This female humpback whale had just given birth when we found her waiting in the shallow waters off the southwest shore of Kauai, Hawaii at 6.45am. She was about 38 feet long and the baby was somewhere behind her and surfaced later. 
We were taken around the island by Captain Chris of Na Pali Riders. Don’t take this tour if you don’t like fast boats and really big waves. 

This female humpback whale had just given birth when we found her waiting in the shallow waters off the southwest shore of Kauai, Hawaii at 6.45am. She was about 38 feet long and the baby was somewhere behind her and surfaced later. 

We were taken around the island by Captain Chris of Na Pali Riders. Don’t take this tour if you don’t like fast boats and really big waves.