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.