It's day 16 in Indonesia.
Also day 5 sleeping in a tree fort located in Padang Padang on the West side of the island, with a mattress on the floor, my suitcase sprawled out at the foot of the bed, and all of my clothes, towels, and bikinis trying to dry outside on the stairs - unwashed.
It's 80's and humid and rainy, my hair hasn't been dry for days. I'm on the 2-meal-a-day program, eating mostly eggs and soupy noodle dishes with some vegetables. Besides the free wifi to access slow loading social media, the pool table, and the actual pool - there's a handful of surfers from around the globe, friendly stray dogs and cats that are becoming family at this little Indonesian bungalow paradise.
After my friend Christina left on the 25th, my goal was to surf every single day. So far I'm on day 10 out of 11 - I took one day off to rest my left shoulder, which I found out is not as strong as my right by a long shot. Some yoga and laps in the pool sufficed. I plan to surf one more week in this area: Padang Padang, Uluwatu, Nusa Dua (wind depending), even though forecast isn't looking great. I heard I can swim with car-sized manta rays on a small island called Lembongan, 1 hour off-shore, so I'll head there next week for that & surf some "secret" beaches (I was told), wish me luck.
A typical Indonesian tree fort day goes something like this: Every day we're up at 7AM where Mama (in house cook) makes us eggs, jaffles (different than waffles), fruit salads, and banana pancakes before we take off for the morning session. I strap my board, currently a 6'0 shortboard (yay!), onto my scooter, followed by a typically dangerous ride to the East side of the island to chase the offshore wind... After the morning ride I hunt down a coconut water and a few bananas to scarf down for lunch - followed by an afternoon surf chasing the dropping tide. It's reefy and shallow! Hawaii-like, so, starfish when you fall. I'm home by 3PM to either, write to you like I am now, work on a book I'm trying to write, a nap, and dinner at 7PM. I wish I had the energy to go out and socialize, but none of us do. It's in bed by 9:30PM to wake up and do it all over again. I don't crave air conditioning or booze or sh*tty food or brushing my hair.
Today, I ditched the pack, and plan to head to our local beach Padang Padang - one of the most beautiful, almost spiritual, monkey infested beaches I've seen...since you walk through a cave and down the steps of a temple to jump off the rocks and paddle out to the break. The water is crystal clear blue and at low tide you can walk along the rocks, in and out of mysterious caves and stairwells.
Even though the days may sound routine and simple - they are some of the happiest of my life. Things taste better, sound clearer, sleep better, surf stronger, run faster, and live better. I know it won't last forever, but I'll take the short sprint and a head full of memories over anything anyday.
Ok, alright, enough about me - since I know you were so concerned. A huge shout out to Mark Welsh for hooking it up with the Sceptre Towels, I'm not just saying this but in a place where nothing dries because the air is basically 100% humidity - these quick-dry recycled anti-microbial towels are coming in for the big win. Also, Poler - I brought my poler bag for the upcoming Australian road trip van dwelling, but after a few rainy nights you've kept me warm since it seems like thick blankets don't have a purpose to exist in Indonesia. Another big thank you!
If you're digging this - stay tuned for the food post :P I'll let you know how I'm eating for $8.00/day like a queen, very raw very vegan, healthy AF.
Written from the tree fort in Padang Padang, Bali, Indonesia.