Wednesday, 6 October 2010

A Manic Confession

Yesterday, I kissed all of the kids goodbye. I hugged Rocco so tightly, wondering if this was the last time I'd ever hold him and if so, would he still grow up ok without me? How much of an impact do I have anyway? I bought Max his favourite magazine and walked out with lingering I love you's. I kissed Dave goodbye. Drove to Sydney airport and got on a plane, flew to Darwin, ran outside to take a photo because I'd never been to Darwin, came back inside, took a photo of kangaroo jerky at the kiosk ..... and got searched by security because of my strange running around behaviour. Then I jumped back on another plane, to take me out of Australia, back to Indonesia. To Bali, to the International Ubud Writers Festival.

The freedom I feel right now is outrageous. It's scary and dangerous and WONDERFUL.

I don't think I've ever had a holiday by myself before. I didn't want to come. Dave has been back to Bali twice, since our trip in August. We both fell so hard for it - he wants to buy land and build a contemporary Balinese house, complete with family temple and connecting rooms and a pool and an outside bathroom. He lives big, this Dave. I'm just hanging around in the background, minding the children and cooking, scraping poo off toilet bowls, wiping garbage juice from the bin. Which is mostly fine. Truth is, I find it a struggle to even exist in the world., let alone go gallavanting across it. (How cool is the word "gallavant." People should use it more.)

So Dave went twice, and he came back and I said, man, there's this writers festival and he's all "GO!" And I laughed and said there is no way I could go. He asked me why and I told him the truth ... that he couldn't mind the kids properly. I wasn't joking, wasn't saying it to be mean. For the almost entire time of our relationship, I have been the kid-minder. He has been the "do whatever he wants-er."

I decided not to go. Until Dave badgered so much that I agreed - oh ok, I will go to that island paradise then. I booked my flights and accommodation on my credit card. On the plane, I sat next to two teenagers who were Tim's age, across the aisle from a boy Max's age, who was sitting next to a young one who was Rocco's age. Somebody kept farting, so I felt completely at home. I missed my boys so much - ached for them all. The two year Harry on the plane kept talking to me: "Are you coming to my Bali?" I said yes sweetheart, I AM coming to your Bali!

Paradise. Never have I been struck so much by a physical place ... I even looked up its history on wikipedia. I KNOW! It's fascinating - the people, the culture, the climate, the sacred temples scattered everywhere. It has a depth that I've never felt. This is where I want my ashes scattered - it's my home. My Spiritual Home, at least. Even if we don't end up buying or building or whatever big plan Dave wants to do .... we can always visit. Maybe I can't ever live here .... maybe it's like wanting to have summer the whole year round. It's just too greedy.


As I was packing my stuff in the overhead storage on the plane, I felt how I always do before a flight .... like I'm on an episode of Air Crash Investigation, when all the passengers are happy and getting ready for their flight, chatting. Before they all die in screaming terror after the ad break.

I thought, if the plane really does crash ..... I didn't even tell the computer I was coming.

So, computer - I'm here! Hi! Where are you? Are you ok? Why do you read my blog? Who are you? Have you ever seen a grown man naked? How would you act, in a foreign country by yourself? Debonair? Approachable yet with a sense of mystery?

This freedom is freaking me out.

How could Dave trust me like this? What if I accidentally get arrested - or eat a parasite, or break my leg? What if there's another bomb, but I end up chatting to the would-be bombers before they explode it ... and our conversation is so amazing that they decide to not go through with it, and I'm a hero but nobody ever knows? What if YOU are the hero of your own life, you just don't know it or refuse to believe it? (Hint: You are.) What if I get abducted? What if I have a dreadful time? What if I have an amazing time?

I need more coffee.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I vote for an amazing time! Rejuvenating even. I hope you enjoy your festival!

    (I wish it didn't show that my crazy brain over thought my comment so I came back to delete it.)

  3. Have a wonderful time at the Festival! I was there for part of it last year. Just back from Bali myself, I wish I could go back too...sigh....damn job...

  4. I can honestly say that I've never been to Bali, which apparently is criminal considering I live in Perth and it's SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO cheap to get there from here but I've never had the desire to go, not sure I ever will to be honest.

    Holidays alone - usually either bliss or hell, I vote for the former.

    I'm actually looking forward to my holiday alone in 2 weeks, time for me to grow, spread my wings and prove to myself that after 11 years together, I can still look after myself - alone!

    Have a fab time!


  5. I am Amy, I am pretty good but tired because my 2 year old is refusing to sleep suddenly, and I read your blog because you are uh-mazing. I don't know why, but you are. Your life is interesting, and your writing keeps me reading. And I'm now seething in jealousy of your love affair with this country my snooty hubby reckons won't be any good. I HAVE to get there.

  6. oh. my. GOD. I am so proud of you for doing this. I am also incredibly jealous of your ability to jet off to Bali and be a writer while I'm traipsing in the chilly rain to a meeting with annoying people on the lower east side of what feels like hell right now. Stupid wet Manhattan.

    I'm curious to know how your newly discovered spiritual home influences your writing. Are you going to sit down one night with some exotic fruit juice and bang out a novel?

    Enjoy lovely girl.

  7. Awesome! I hope you have a wonderful time at the conference!

    I never imagine that I'm going to die on vacation...but I do make sure my house is clean before I leave, in case I never come back.

  8. After reading....I would say you need to skip the next cup of coffee :)

    I went to Las Vegas by myself about 6 years ago (for a neices technically I wasn't by myself) and it was glorious. I was so worried about EVERYTHING before I left. Once I got there, I found out I really didn't care what was happening at home. Horrid mother that I am.

    But, Bali? I can't even dream that beautiful.

  9. Have a great time!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Enjoy yourself and your freedom to be YOU and to only worry about YOU (for a change). That picture is amazing by the way- as are most of your pictures!!

  11. Huge potential of a good time. I like going somewhere on my own, but the thing I miss it getting to share it with someone. Pictures will just have to do. SO you have fun there miss eden I miss you tons.

    I haven't heard from you lately and I'm worried I may have done/said something to upset you. Pleae let me know, I'm worried I'm losing my friend.

  12. I read because it's so real. You make me think and laugh. I laughed at you feeling right at home on the plane amidst the farting.
    Hope you have an amazing time in Bali and that the conference thing is great.

  13. Wow! You are amazing. So glad you went for it.

  14. I'll be honest - I don't think more coffee is the answer. :)

    I hope you enjoy Paradise. Sounds fantastic. Funny coincidence - I actually live in Paradise. Seriously. That's what it's called. Though it doesn't look a bit like Bali.

  15. Ya you defiantly NEED more coffee!!! O-M-WORD woman!!

    Slow down take a deep breath and enjoy all that peace and alone time most of us LONG FOR!!!!


Write to be understood, speak to be heard. - Lawrence Powell

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