It took a week of intense psychological warfare with a volcano before I was able to change my Facebook status to 'surfing in paradise until further notice'. So, needless to say, I was extremely thankful to be in Bali, and everywhere I looked there seemed to be more and more to be thankful for; turquoise seas, perfect machine like waves that were unexpectedly 'me sized', fallen frangipani all around to wear in my hair, and so much colour that I couldn't decide whether to surf or take photographs.
Wherever we went we seemed to trip over small colourful offerings made by the Balinese to their Hindu gods. Each is a small work of art constructed with enormous care and placed everywhere from beaches, to homes, to the middle of the road. I noticed my first offering at Denpasar airport as I was handing over my $25 visa fee - a small palm leaf tray filled with rice, flowers, a ritz biscuit, a cigarette and, of course, a smoking incense stick. All around you in Bali are the petals and remains of these once perfect creations, yet still the same care and attention is given to preparing new ones over and over again throughout the day. I like this time dedicated everyday to create something beautiful to give thanks and appreciate what you have .. it's a reminder to us all to slow down and value the small things.
Published in Surfgirl Magazine, August 2010