TRAVEL: Keeping Your Memories Alive (Philippines/Bali Recap Video)

Traveling is truly one of the most transformational things people can do for themselves. Whether you travel near or far, there’s a guarantee you won’t feel the same or be the same. It’s been two months since I left Bali, and I still think and dream about it every day.

Thanks to technology, I have all my memories saved as a constant reminder every day to keep my transformation alive. Combined, the boys and I have thousands of photos from our trip and hours of footage recorded on Alvin’s GoPro. In addition, I have a day-to-day diary of my trip that I’ve documented via this blog, with very detailed (sometimes redundant) descriptions of what went on and how we were feeling.

So coming home, I made sure to do two things. First, make a photo album with all my favorite photos from our trip (which was really hard because I had so many pictures of monkeys and bowls of curry that I wanted to include). 200 photos definitely didn’t feel like enough to capture 6-weeks worth of travel, but my album turned out absolutely perfect. Second, make a travel video. I hadn’t dabbled in any video editing in years, but I was ready to tackle the project. I sifted through hours worth of footage and Alvin selfies, and was able to condense our trip into twelve minutes. Watching the video was like reliving a dream. I wasn’t sure it really happened or of the places we visited were real.


Back to transformation… I’ll admit, it’s really easy to forget. I wanted to travel because I intended to find myself and recreate purpose within me. A month after being back home, I found myself already lost in my own confusion and self-doubt. Luckily, I took the time to put all the things I’ve learned and all the memories I’ve made into an album and a video. Every time I find myself in my own pit of negative thoughts, I come back to the great memories I made, not dwelling on the past, but using it as a reminder of how great my future can be.

For anyone traveling or planning on traveling, I highly recommend taking the time to put together an album with your favorite photos, or recording footage for you to show your friends and family when you get back home. And don’t procrastinate! The longer you wait, the more likely you’re never going to do it. So this should be the first thing you do when you get back from traveling. I promise it’ll be worth your time.



TRAVEL: Lovin’ Lovina, Bali (8/15/2016)

 Today we said goodbye to our new Indonesian parents to go up north to Lovina, Bali. Ibu (mama in Indonesian) cooked us some of the best fried bananas with chocolate drizzled on top for us for breakfast. We told her we wanted to take a picture with her and bapa (papa) before we left. A few minutes later, she came back with three brightly colored sarongs and wraps for us to wear for our pictures. She put on our sarongs and gave the boys udungs (head pieces) to wear as well. We went to their prayer area and then to their family temple to take some family pictures together. Darma came to the house and we took some pictures with him as well, and exchanged Facebook accounts for us to all stay in touch after we leave. I asked Darma how to say “I miss you”, and he taught us “saya rindu kamu”. Ibu and bapa were so happy, and we spent our last couple minutes there exchanging goodbyes and saying that we’ll miss each other after we left. We were soon off to Lovina, Bali, knowing that we’ll truly miss our new Indonesian family. 

On our way to Lovina, we noticed the the sky was finally clear and beautiful unlike the rainy and cloudy week we’ve had. Amin, our driver and part of Ibu and Bapa’s family, drove up to a viewpoint where we could see two of Bali’s lakes in full. I was also carsick, so it was a great time for me to buy some soda water and bananas for the rest of our trip there. We took some photos overlooking Bali’s countryside, and drove through the mountains to our Airbnb. As usually, we got a little lost trying to find out place, but some nice locals pointed us in the right direction. 

We got to our Airbnb, which was locked still since we were early, so we went around to the back. We found a small swimming pool and a great view of someone’s farmland, and were so excited to go swimming here. We had the house to ourselves for the day. The first thing we did after getting the keys to the house was jump in the pool. The boys cannon-balled in right away and took GoPro videos of us swimming and jumping.

We headed off to Gitgit Waterfall and stopped by a restaurant on our way there. I desperately needed wifi (no shame!) since I haven’t posted anything for days. We drove about 30-minutes to Gitgit Waterfall, which of course our GPS gave us a hard time finding. We circled around and finally found it. We walked about 700 meters after parking, and found this impressive waterfall (the tallest we’ve seen so far) at the end of our walk. The wind was blowing so hard from the waterfall and it was cold from the mist. Although I really, really dislike the cold, I spout up some courage to go inside the water only intending to dip my feet in. Of course Alvin decided to go under the waterfall, then Josh, and then followed me. And soon we were all under the waterfall with our pants nearly falling off from the heavy force of the waterfall. 

We drove home and gazed off at the pink sunset. We decided to have dinner at home, so we bought some instant noodles, Bintang, and lots of snacks for our dinner. We went back home and did a little yoga in the kitchen as we waited for the water to boil. I showed the boys my favorite yoga poses until we finally got hungry. We ate our instant noodles, drank our Bintangs, and lit an incense as we talked and ate. I’m currently writing this as we watch a (pirated) DVD of the movie Prometheus. My belly is currently full of two large bottles of Bintang, and lots of Bali happiness.