Life stands still looking out at the birds flying overhead spreading their wings.
Light filters into the room reflecting hues of green from the leaves that surround us as the sun takes its place in the sky.
Sideman, a small village central Eastside Bali near Padambai is quiet an remote amongst the rice terraces and lush palm trees and greens. It is an artisans village where they specialize in colorful threads of double ikat and silk-woven clothes to be appointed on your walls, bed or body.
The women painstakingly weave these beautiful threads and hand dye them with vegetables extractions teaching the younger generation to preserve these ancient customs. It is out of the hustle and bustle of town and it’s been said that this is what Ubud was like 20 years or so ago.
On Sept 1st, the streets are closed and they have a cremation of about 100 people. They create beautiful pagodas of animals and put the bodies in there to burn. After 7 days of prayer and preparation, they burn the bodies. Then they take them to the river to return them to the earth. Life is simpler here and in much the same way they have other celebrations, there is a communal synergy you don’t see in our part of the world.
They live together in family temples and collectively care for each other as a whole completing the cycle of life. It’s quiet here with the sounds of frogs, birds and insects buzzing, but at 8 or 9 we will begin to hear the scooters in this tiny village and gasp on the smell of the fumes as each one passes us.
The pool is small but well appointed and the temples on the property remind us to pause and reflect. I am once again reminded to slow down as I do my breathing/meditation and stretch qui overlooking the veranda.
My monkey mind is still fighting for survival but slowly I can feel a calmness wash over me as I sit on the couch contemplating my navel as I sip a cup of fresh brewed luwaik…. (coffee from the poop of a luwak.. gross sounding I know).