AMAZING PLACES: BALI
I feel truly blessed to be able to say that I’ve been to Bali 6 times, almost having to
pinch myself when I think about such. This was achievable due to the fact that I
spent two different years living in Jakarta as a teacher, then spent a decent chunk of
2017 backpacking around SE Asia. But it wasn’t until these past trips to Bali, that I
truly came to a point of being deeply captivated by its magic and beauty.
I first visited Bali in 2008, and much of the trips between then and 2012 consisted of
the typical beach-going and nightclubbing variety. I had never travelled up into the
island, other than a time when a friend and I ventured up to Lovina, where I got to
swim with dolphins (self pinching required for that one too). But on this past trip
around SE Asia, where I truly grew into my “State of Wandering”, I discovered the parts
of Bali that not only bleed its Hindu culture and ancient mystic feels, but scream
out its awe inspiring earthly and natural beauty.
Most of us to some degree will contend that waterfalls are a thing of beauty. But it
wasn’t until I stood near the bottom of one that was so powerful, it’s sheer force
would crush anyone who wanted to try venturing into its vortex, that I realized I might just
have an inner obsession with them. It was then on my very last day in Bali from this
past trip when I not only swam and danced in the outpour at the bottom of a much
smaller one, but climbed it as well, that I realized I have a deep spiritual affinity with them.
Or…maybe some of the waterfalls in Bali happen to just be a gateway into this
planet’s immense, beautiful energy. Places so enchanted that only touching them with
your own eyes and breathing in the air they occupy, will afford you the opportunity
to feel what they create.
Bali opened its marvel to me once I escaped and left behind its typical tourism tastes
of Kuta and explored the parts that most will only see in pictures. I met an amazing
Balinese guy named Bagi from a previous trip to Ubud, and it was all throughout
that SE Asia trip that we went from motorcycle adventures seeing the Monkey Forest
and playing with elephants, to day trips in his car, hiking and searching for waterfalls.
Needless to say, Bali has forever left an imprint upon my adventurous soul and only
certain places have such power to call back a Wanderer, time and time again. I can
say with utmost certainty that I will return again, and that each time I do, it will have a
deep effect on me.
Story and Photography by Nate Sartain