OK, I shall attempt to continue writing about the rest of the month I spent in Bali last year. (It’s sooo easy to attempt digressing…)
So anyhow, by the end of the first week, I wasn’t exactly in a great place yet but at least I made the decision to stay on for the rest of the month, thanks to Wendy’s encouragement. Due to her cajoling, I also found myself in a yoga class called Venus Yoga.
Wendy loved the class. I didn’t.
I didn’t fancy putting my hands underneath my top to, well, get in touch with my femininity. I was, after all, a city girl, who was all about sweating it out during exercise. Why all these getting-to-know-yourself stuff? I didn’t enjoy that spiritual aspect of yoga and I didn’t pretend that I did. In fact, I remembered asking the receptionists at Yoga Barn if they offered Pilates instead. I wanted something straight forward without the yoga chatter.
And of course I didn’t know any better then that we should all question the things that make us uncomfortable in life.
But at least I was open to giving things and people a second chance. I’ve always been a huge advocate of second (or even third and fourth!) chances so I decided to walk the talk and turned up for another Venus Yoga class.
I found myself loving it after the second class. Not because it was then I became an airy fairy but simply cos I love dancing and Venus Yoga combined free-form dancing with Hatha yoga. Also, I have a very curious nature and I LOVE finding out more about people because every one has a story to tell. And Shivani (the teacher and founder of Venus Yoga) always started her classes with a round of sharing.
It was also in the second class where we had a partners’ exercise where we had to look into a complete stranger’s eyes for one whole minute in silence. We can smile, we can cry but we have to maintain the eye contact.
It sounds simple but it’s daunting as hell. It was awkward initially but if you pushed at it, you find the walls we build around ourselves torn down. I had no idea meaningful eye contact could be that intimate.
And being held in the afternoons, I found myself wandering off to tea at Kafe or Clear Cafe on Hanuman Street with the other women in the classes. And from there onwards, I became a social butterfly of sorts in Ubud. It was completely hilarious. I found my schedule filled with social commitments. From not knowing a single soul to having company for every other meal, I suddenly found myself craving for solitude.
Which I took as a good thing. My yearning for solitude has always served as a measuring factor at emotional well-being. Even when I managed to sneak in time alone reading in a cafe, company, somehow, found their way to my table. I must had, thankfully, stopped looking so bloody depressive and off-putting by then. Random strangers would start striking up conversations with me and soon after, we became fast friends.
And at the topic of dancing, I can’t forget my two favourite dance classes at Yoga Barn – Biodanza and Ecstatic Dance. The latter was a two-hour long class, which always have me completely drenched in sweat and grins after. I hate to say this but damnit, ecstatic dance is freaking beautiful. There’s no such classes in Singapore but one can hope someone will eventually introduce it to the thousands of yogis here…
It was at the former class where I met two gorgeous Canadian girls – Karla and Rebecca. Out of a class of 20, we somehow found ourselves keep flocking to each other during the 90-minute class. I kept wanting to dance with them. I didn’t realise then that they were travelling pals but somehow, it all came together. We headed off for dinner with Wendy at Bali Buddha and when I learnt they’d been travelling for two months and their funds were running a bit low, I insisted they came to stay with me at the villa. So suddenly, I found myself having roomies!
And the nights we spent at the villa made up one of my favourite memories of my month there. For the first week or so, I found myself returning to the eerily dark and quiet villa every night, which was rather depressing at that point of my life. But there were nights where Becca and Karla would return to the villa first (they were undergoing a month-long yoga teacher training course and found themselves drained at the end of the day) while I had my social obligations (hahaha). And the sight of them chilling in the living room as I stepped into the villa’s compound? Bliss.
We took turns at the bathroom and we had even established a routine. It was usually Karla, me then Becca. Then we would chill by my MacBook to watch an episode of Modern Family. I would laugh my hyena laughter, which in turn would make the girls laughed (albeit, it was directed at me…). There was a night of full moon so Karla led a little ritual where we confessed, cried, laughed and danced till 1am under the gorgeous moon and to Ingrid Michaelson on my iTunes. And there was that other night we got high on shisha in a bar and I found myself agreeing to go to the Gili Islands with a stranger since the two girls had already gone before they met me.
I would awake in the mornings to find them gone (since 6am actually!) and they would see me around 10am at Yoga Barn (where they also had their yoga teacher training course) running to my 10am class. I would throw them air kisses, kick off my flip flops and run upstairs for my classes. Sometimes, we’ll have dinners together but on Sundays when they had the day off, we’ll find ourselves shopping for jewellery, attending one of the many different workshops available in Ubud, gallery visiting or eating pastries at Kue on Main Street.
OK! Word count of 1,000. Time to end it here and till the next entry… Have a lovely week ahead!! <3