Wow! How fortunate am I that I live on the complete opposite side of the world yet I am able to share it with one of my very best friends. Last week I was blissed out with one of my favorite partners in crime, Allison Damon, aka (for those who know our tight connection) Altron... She bought her tickets before I set out for the states this summer, so I wasn't too bummed when we weren't able to bond as closely as I wanted during the music festival rampage we were on.
The clock was ticking & butterflies swarmed in my stomach for weeks before she was about to arrive. I was so excited to share my life over here with someone I love, with someone from my other home.
Matt & I arrived at the airport at 12:30am & by 1:45 I was seriously starting to get worried. At about 1:15 I realized that I had not given her my phone number or address, so if anything went wrong there was no way I would know as I stood there waiting...
Finally she arrived, and as anyone would expect, I yelled from the top of my lungs "ALTRON!!!!" running over to her. Gave her the FATTEST hug & realized "wow, you just traveled serious lengths to hang with me," this is something to be noted.
It took her a bit to adjust from America time to Bali time, but I also didn't give her much time to think about it, I through her right in to the Balinese culture the next morning. After I showed her "life at Greenschool" we set off on our motorbikes for a long day filled with ceremonies, jungle trekking, & sacred water cleansing rituals. Did I mention I crashed us?? On her first day here I toppled over the bike going about 1mph, it gave us some bruising & scars to immediately smile about.. We didn't have time for any big injuries, we had a big day ahead of us. Luckily, she smiled & said "that damn gravel!" I looked at her with a big smile, while blood dripped from my knee and exclaimed "Welcome to Bali Al!"
The ceremony & water cleansing ritual was not only a unique experience for someone from the outside world, I also grew a new love & passion for this amazing culture I live amongst. At about 9:30 when our eyes were growing heavy from all the cultural immersion, dinner was to be served. We sat barefoot & cross legged in the middle of a Balinese compound & were served a delicious authentic Indonesian meal which we ate with our bare hands. This was quite a treat, for all of us.
The majority of the trip was spent hopping from beach to beach, traveling by motorbike & jumping on boats to give Al a good ol' island hopping adventure. We sipped glasses of wine, ate incredible dinners, sipped coconuts, played with our hula hoop, wrote in our journals, had great conversations, played cards, laughed, smiled, did yoga together, joked about stories of our past, the list goes on...
The best part about it all, was that we were together. It didn't really matter what we were doing, what mattered was that we were together. It made me realize how much I not only miss Allison is my life, but it also made me realize how REAL & GENUINE my relationships are here in Bali & in the states. It made me grow a whole new appreciation for the simple fact that people have impacted my life in so many ways & how grateful I am to maintain & manifest incredible people in my life. It also made me grasp how much I have changed as an individual since I have left the states & because of that my friendships are being forced to evolve in the most beautiful way possible.
On Allison's last day in Bali I had a real treat in store. Our whole adventure allowed for some serious (much needed) relaxation, but this spot was going to be the most beautiful & relaxing of all. We took her to our FAVORITE spot in Bali, far away from the beaches, in the middle of nowhere. Surrounded by rice fields & positioned perfectly at the base of Mount Agung (a large active volcano) lays quite little Sideman (pronounced seedamon). It was here that we spent our last hours together gazing at the incredible view of the most sacred mountain in Bali. The infinity pool reflected the clouds & the tip of the crater, & the outdoor living room possessed the comfiest cushions one could possibly ask for. It was here, in this place, where we reflected upon the serious bliss we encountered over the week & realized that we are three VERY fortunate human beings.
When I took Al to the airport I gave her the warmest hug I could possibly offer & thanked her for succombing to the long travels (in the end it is so worth it!). As I hugged her it was definitely not a goodbye, but an "until next time" departure. She walked away & turned around for one last glance & I hopped in the car with the biggest smile on my face coming deep from within my heart, & saying to myself "wow!I am so fortunate to have such a beautiful friend!"
Now, I wonder... Where will we meet next time???