I have just come home from a surprisingly spiritual, inspirational time in Bali. Don't get me wrong - I thought I was going for a super relaxing holiday and yoga retreat - soaking up the sunshine and doing some vinyasas. I was not expecting to be so emotionally challenged, to meet such amazing women and to be so entranced by the beauty of the people, culture, environment, food and ritual of Ubud.
I was so distracted by the beautiful offerings and shrines that walking 30mins down the road took me at least an hour. Even the rubbish bags looked beautiful to me. I was told that black and white are Balinese colours representing good and evil and they are very present everywhere you go. The offerings on the ground keep the evil spirits out (cause they live on the ground) while the ones placed higher are for the good ones. I never worked out what/who the ones on poles and drainpipes were for. Beautiful craftsmanship seems very much part of the culture - at least in the parts of Ubud where I stayed. There were critters all over (squirrels/frogs/mice/birds) and everywhere smelled of incense, smoke, and rice.