Farah Ramos' Blog

My Pursuit of the Bali Magic

Posted in Adventures by Farah Ramos on March 31, 2017

On my 30thbirthday, I promised myself I’d let go of all my baggage. All the sufferings I’ve experienced for years, all the wasted sacrifices, the shattered dream, and my mistake of choosing a wrong mentor. I had to be reassured that all the stress of the past was part of a higher plan.

I booked myself a week of solo travel in Bali, Indonesia in the hope of healing my worn-out soul. In the movie, “Eat, Pray, Love,” Julia Roberts found love in Bali. But for me, I wanted peace of mind to be back in my being.

On my first two (2) days, I got thrilled when my Indonesian friend, Fita Pamela, told me that she also had plans to go to Bali and told me we should go together. She even picked me up from the airport, what a darling! We wasted no time! As soon as we deposited our luggage in the hotel, she toured me around… she drove a rented scooter and I was riding at the back. First we went to Padang-Padang Beach. It was about 40 mins away from our hotel in Kuta. On our way there, I smelled the familiar scent of Indonesia. I don’t know why, but I felt like I was home. I felt like I was within the comforts of a safe zone — no one and nothing to harm me.

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On the way back, we got a flat tire. Fita drove the scooter and I had to walk when we were looking for a vulcanizing shop. Even this couldn’t kill my vibe. I told Fita, it’s still a good day!

When our scooter was good as new, I was brought to Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park in Uluwatu. Majority of the population in Bali practice Hinduism and this cultural park is devoted to the Hindu God Vishnu and his mount, Garuda, the mythical bird who became his companion (source: Wikipedia).

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Last stop for the day was the famous Kuta Beach. I didn’t really see the point of all the hype about this beach, to be honest. I didn’t see anything special about it. But still, I enjoyed seeing the sunset, as always!

Farah010.jpgThe next day (and Fita’s last day in Bali), we went to Oceans 27 and Bali Garden Beach Resort just at the back of Discovery Shopping Mall which was a 5-minute walk from our hotel. I loved it. I told myself I have found my perfect spot.

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Meet the cantik (which means beautiful in Bahasa Indonesia), Fita! Thank you very much for showing me around! 🙂

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After that was the beginning of my solo trip. My friend, Michael Lastimosa, introduced me to his friend who’s based in Bali. He was probably scared for me for doing this trip on my own. Hehe! And so I got invited to a beach party in Finn’s Beach Club, Canggu thanks to Oan Sevilla and his boyfriend Nico Nico Mare. Although the DJ wasn’t really good, I had a ball with my new friends. Plus, I met Gary Marsiano and her group! Such cool people! I ended up tagging along with them the whole night. We went to different clubs and finished at around 5am! Haha! I ended up staying at Gary’s house too. Yes, she adopted me!

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The next day, we went to Love Anchor Canggu. And in that instant, I fell in love with Canggu. I should have gone straight there. I love how peaceful and laidback it was. I wish I had a chance to wander more but I had to go back to Kuta.

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On my last night in Kuta, I experienced another “first.” I went to party by myself! Hahaha! I went to Potato Head in Seminyak. I wish I went there a little earlier to witness the sunset. It was one of the best spots to watch it while having a cocktail. Anyway, a few minutes later, someone approached me and we became instant friends! Her name is Melyna and she’s from Mauritius. I really enjoy meeting people and sharing stories with them! Here’s a photo of us:

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And the much-awaited visit to Ubud has finally come! I fell in love with Kuta, then realized I was more in love with Canggu but when I got to Ubud, I knew it was what true love is. Haha!

I stayed in Swan Inn (near Monkey Forest). Later I found out that this is how traditional Balinese houses are. It’s dominated by pavilions and a central courtyard. Each house has different functions. They also have a family shrine in their compound. Ours is a modern version… with the pool and more houses than the original basic houses.

Every single day I was in Ubud, I made sure I go to a Yoga class. I went to Radiantly Alive Yoga Studio, Yoga Barn and Ubud Yoga House (my favorite because it was located in the outskirts of Ubud and you’ll pass by the rice paddies). I felt very calm and relaxed. The practice just brings out optimism, relaxation and positive energies. I loved every single class I took plus I even got to enjoy a beautiful view of the rice paddies and I could hear the sound of nature too.

Another thing I appreciated most about Ubud was that I got my “alone time.” I enjoyed going to restaurants with nice ambience and just read a book I bought in a book sale. I liked eating by myself too without having the need to speak. These are moments I treasure because I like spending time with myself.

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And suddenly I realized I had to see more of Ubud… so I booked a cycling tour. I got to see the Tegalalang Rice Terraces, saw how Luwak Coffee is processed, and I got to cycle around for hours! It was non-stop downhill and a little uphill. We didn’t really use the pedals that much, haha! It even rained but of course I didn’t give in. Good thing there was a couple in our group who wanted to continue the tour as well. I felt so free as I go around with my bicycle!

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On my last day, I had the best yoga experience at Ubud Yoga House and Balinese massage afterwards. I wanted to stay longer but thank goodness I got everything I needed out of this trip.

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Kuta, Uluwatu, and Canggu served as distraction from all the pain and suffering I dealt with during the past years. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed every single thing I did but Ubud… Ubud was where I found the Bali Magic. The whole place just brought peace of mind to my lost soul. I realized there will always be people who will drag you down, who will never be happy for your achievements. I also realized I can always build new dreams… dreams that will allow me to be happy. I spent years trying to save a sinking ship. But you can never save a sinking ship with a passenger who doesn’t really care about the ship. It’s just there but it’s letting you save it yourself. Even if you know it can really help you, it still won’t. I got burned out so I just left the ship. I swam and found peace in the ocean until I found the shore. I saved myself.

I thank Bali for casting its spell on me. I got to save myself before I started this trip but I had to save my soul. Yoga and the peaceful vibe in this trip just made me love life once again. The old me who used to be inspired every single day, motivated to work all the time and the me who was full of optimism died… and Bali resurrected my old self. And that to me, is the Bali Magic.

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