I am very sorry for not posting last week, I was very busy! I have just spent the best week in my favourite place ever, Bali! Eating, drinking, swimming and tanning – what else could you want? I was fortunate enough to tag along to my aunty, uncles and cousins little Bali getaway – sorry guys!
Unfortunately, flying direct to Adelaide from Denpasar is awful. The flight leaves Bali at midnight and arrives in Adelaide around 7am – which means that you don’t get much sleep (I guess when I move back to Perth, I will have an endless supply of airlines and flight times!!). I am always grumpy, tired and very sad when I arrive back in Adelaide. For some reason, after coming home from Bali, everytime, I am an emotional wreck. I have no idea why. I am literally sad for weeks after until I can convince myself that I will be going back soon. During these few weeks, I constantly look at airfares and accomodation to make myself feel better. This only ever happens after Bali – it is super weird. I think its because when I go to Bali it does feel like a holiday. I literally do nothing! Maybe I am so sad because I know when I come home I actually have to adult and not just spend my days swimming and drinking?
Since returning, I have been very sad, but life goes on. I have to stop and think about just how lucky I am to be able to visit Bali as often as I have. I am always complaining to my mum that I haven’t been back in four years. I really shouldn’t be complaining.
In 2010, my family and I decided to sponsor a child in Bali. We were given the sweetest little boy, Yogi. Through sponsoring Yogi, we paid for his school fees, books, uniform etc, which allowed him to attend school – an opportunity a lot of Balinese children do not get to experience. As Australians (and many other nationalities), we are lucky we are all given the chance to attend school. To get a good job or career. But most of us still complain about how much we hate school or that we don’t need to go! Just think that for many Balinese children, attending school is just a dream.
Yogi grew up in a village, in the North East of Bali. I have been lucky enough to go to his village on several occasions. The location is sensational. The views of the ocean would be worth millions, but this is where the poorest Balinese people live. Although they don’t have a lot at all, they are the happiest people you will ever meet. Last Wednesday, I was fortunate enough to see my aunty/uncle and cousins sponsor child, Wayan in his village. When you arrive, they are so happy to see you. They greet you will a big smile and a hug, making you feel very welcome. As soon as we arrived, a bunch of other boys from surrounding villages rushed over to see us. Balinese children are literally the cutest things ever! We gave the family lots of second-hand clothes, toys and lots of food. Who knew that all the ‘stuff’ we have sitting and lying around our homes would actually change someone else’s life?
Every time I visit Yogi or in this case, Wayan, we always complain about the long car ride! Yes its long, but there are more important things to think about. Through these visits, I always stop from a few moments and appreciate what I have. A stable family, a roof over my head, dinner on the table every night and clean drinking water. All the things we take for granted. Imagine trying to live without these things for even a few hours, I can guarantee that most of us would struggle immensely.
When telling people I was coming to Bali, I got some mixed reactions. A few comments were made about why some people would never go to Bali – because they don’t believe ‘tourists’ should visit – we need to go to Bali to help the poor, build houses etc rather that spend money there, eating and drinking. These comments made me think. Without the tourists, Bali would be even worse. ALL of the millions of tourists who flock to Bali each year are building their economy. Giving the Balinese jobs. Yogi continued on to hospitality school, where he is now working at the Octopus restaurant in Nusa Dua. He has built a life for himself, doing something he loves. If there were no tourists, people like Yogi would not have a job.
I understand that everyone will have differing opinions on Bali. Some people hate it, while others love it (including me). To me, Bali is one of the only places where I can lie around a pool for a week and not feel bad for not doing anything else! As you become a more frequent tourist, you begin to form friendships with some of the Balinese people. We have a friend, Hillary, who we always get to pick us up from the airport or when we go to the villages. We also have our regular beach bars we like to go to. Jimmy’s Bar was frequented a fair few times this trip as well! So I guess having these friendships justify coming to Bali? Hm ..
I am super sorry for the long post, but I thought I should make up for last week. I also thought this was an important topic that I wanted to discuss. If you are interested in looking to sponsor a child, we did it through the Carolia Charity – which is run by two women in WA. ALL the money given is given to the child. If you are interested in doing something like this, please do! You don’t know how much this will change lives. If you have any questions, please message me! I am a very strong advocate for allowing every child access to an education. It is just so important.
Although my week in Bali is over, I am counting down the days until I visit again whenever that is – maybe November (please mum?!). Although I can assure you, that if you are only going for a week, you do not need to pack 4 pairs of bathers, especially when I only took hand luggage.. But yes, you can go to Bali for a week with only hand luggage!! Just a heads up, the next few posts will probably also be about Bali, because why not. Talking about it just makes me feel like I’m still there (even though I’m clearly not!!)