kecak fire dance in bali

The Kecak Fire Dance is a Balinese Hindu ritual that is now more of a performance for tourists than it is a sacred dance performed in temples. For that reason, I was a little hesitant to attend what is now more commonly called the Balinese Monkey Chant. But my tour guide, who became a …

ogoh-ogoh monster in the nyepi day parade in ubud

Every year on the island of Bali in Indonesia, the entire island goes completely dark for 24 hours. No Internet. No TV. No electricity. Nyepi Day is a day for meditation and reflection; a day for the Earth to reset; a day for complete silence. It’s also an incredible time to be in Bali. …

life in the ubud monkey forest

I spent one month in a bungalow just outside the Ubud Monkey Forest in Bali, and the overarching lesson that I learned there was this: the jungle ALWAYS wins. Now, I don’t mean to paint my life in the Ubud Monkey Forest as a hardship by any means. It was one of the most …

Learning to Surf in Canggu

When I set out for the beach town of Canggu, just over an hour south of Ubud on Bali’s southeastern coast, I didn’t have a plan. My whole goal was to go somewhere new with absolutely no plan at all and to say “yes” to any (reasonable) suggestion that came my way. So, when …

nyepi day in bali

I didn’t plan it, exactly, but I am somehow following New Year’s celebrations around the globe. I joined old friends in Florida to ring in 2019 over champagne and laughter in January; lunched with new friends in Chiang Dao to celebrate the Chinese New Year over long noodles and warm red wine on the …