On the days leading up to our return to Nusa Lembongan, Mount Agung on Bali began to grumble while I fretted about a number of things including my increased weight, a result of 8 months of semi inactivity after twenty one months of go go go. Okay fine it wasn’t all go go go but we were swimming and diving on a fairly regular basis. I also felt like I’d aged ten years in the eight months we had been back in England. Travelling had spoiled us and given us a taste of a life we both felt so at home in and Nusa Lembongan had been at the centre of that feeling. The people we’d met there, some who called it home and some who were passing through as we were, made lasting impressions.
We have never made the journey to Bali from Europe before and quite frankly, it sucks, almost eighteen hours on two planes is about fourteen hours longer than I am interested in flying for. That said the Qatar Airways flight over was fine and made a tedious journey passably pleasant.
Arriving into sublime warmth just before midnight we were soon whisked away by a prearranged taxi. Talk of Agung’s grumblings a hot topic during the short journey to Sanur. Harry, I am reasonably certain that was not his real name, reassured us we could drive to Java and catch a plane from there in the event the volcano erupted and the airport on Bali had to close. Pah! We said, we’d wait until it opened again thanks anyway 😉
Our first night was spent at Puri Hiromi, chosen for its closeness to Hardys Supermarket, and in spite of the late hour we were greeted with lovely welcoming smiles. Showered, exhausted and happy we surrendered to the soft heaven that was our super king bed.
The next morning, after a breakfast of fluffy coconut waffles, a spot of shopping at Hardys and a bite of sushi at Ryoshi we headed to the harbour to catch the 2pm Rocky Fast Boat. We’ve used Rocky for almost all of our travel to Nusa Lembongan switching from Scoot pretty early on. Both are good, Rocky just seem nicer. Our smiles, already large, grew as we crossed the water.
D’Mel Sari, has been our home on Lembongan for most of our stays. The rooms are basic, clean, air conditioned and most importantly have a fridge, a rare treat indeed on this island. The owner Ketut, a very kind, talkative fellow, welcomed me with cries of ‘how fat you are!’ ‘What have you taken 5kg? Do you think? 5kg?’ All while he puffed up his face in mimicry of my apparently shocking weight gain 😂😂 JHubz’s sardonic ‘now I see why your wife stays on another island’ going over his head while he revelled in my obesity. Gee um thanks! Ha!
Any trace of feeling sorry for myself was however swept aside when a short while later we learnt the devastating news that Maria, a shiny beacon of laughter, love and kindness on the island, had died in a car accident on Java a few months ago. Along with her husband Gede, Maria cooked up some of the best food on the island from a tiny rustic Waroeng named Marias Waroeng Boemboe. She always had a kind word, was always welcoming and was such a giver of love that I cannot even imagine the loss Gede and her two children are going through.
Life is short and life is precious. So I’m a bit fat, well I’m already less fat than when I arrived having dived and swum for the last week, and have every intention of getting even less fat. And what if I didn’t! Maria was a tiny round dumpling made of love. Size is really utterly irrelevant once you step away from the homogenised ‘we should all be skinny rakes’ fabrication that exists in the west. Yeah yeah I want to be healthy, and healthy can actually come in all shapes and sizes. For me my happiness seems to go down as my waist size goes up, so that’s why I’ll be working to get healthier, so I also get happier, because me I like being happy Xx