not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Happiness lies in Simplicity.

*a picture of my parents headed into the produce market. it's simple excursions like this that make being home enjoyable*

...and so it is, and here I am. Once i get back from my months of travel, Everyone always asks, "God-- aren't you so depressed to be back??". And they are always surprised by my response, "Nope." Being home (for 4 short months!) is as satisfying to me as the months I spend abroad. They may not be as exciting or adventure-filled, but they are fulfilling none-the-less. It's the simple things that really make me happy and bring a smile to my face. I always look forward to being back in a kitchen, MY kitchen. I love having all of my spices at hand, a fridge full of healthy fruits and vegetables, a pantry full of grains and legumes, and cast iron pans (the only thing I know how to cook with!). Having moved back home is even better, because my parents eat with the same morals, passion, and ingredients that I do! Another bonus to being home is my bed. My own bed, in my own room. It's not infested with bed bugs, there's no random backpacker snoring beside me, and my belongings aren't shoved into a small corner in a shared room! I can listen to my music as loud as I want, whenever I want. I can turn the lights on if I want to read, and turn them off when I'm ready to sleep. It's brilliant! When I woke up this morning, I laid in bed for a good 20 minutes just smiling. It's so quiet here where my parents live. The breeze was blowing through my open windows, and all I could hear was the birds chirping and the faint sound of my ceiling fan. The air is perfectly warm- not stifling hot or freezing cold. I love that I can walk downstairs, turn on the faucet, and drink water straight from the tap! No bottled water! I can make myself tea and coffee throughout the day and mid-afternoon I enjoy a little siesta on my parents comfortable couch in the cool living room. Then, theres DRIVING. I actually dont enjoy driving at all, but I do love the Freedom that it offers. I don't need to bum a ride, catch a bus, or suffer through a long walk. If I want to go somewhere, I simply get in the car and go. Better yet is being able to rock out. Driving with the windows down and the music loud is a form of meditation for me. On today's trip to the produce market I spun Kings of Leon: Aha Shake Heartbreak, The White Stripes: Elephant, and Joe Purdy: Julie Blue. And best of all- family. After months of email and Skype, I finally get to see them for Real! Coffee in the mornings, lunch in the and dinners and meals at Mikes Seafood. Life is good year round- no matter where on the globe I happen to be- even if it's in the town I grew up in. Now the only thing missing is Marny and Julisa....

Super Smoothie

For lunch today I made myself a delightful smoothie, so good that I thought I'd share:

- 1tsp raw cacao powder
- 1tsp raw maca powder
- 1tsp spirulina
- 12 raw almonds
- 6 goji berries
- 6 fresh blackberries
- a bit of fresh pineapple
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup juice (cranberry)

I soaked the goji berries and almonds in the water for about an hour. Then in a blender I poured the water, almonds and berries in. I added the fresh fruit, powders and juice. Blend for about a minute. Enjoy.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Gnat Bastards.


Aside from hating exercise, I reserve a bit of hate for a very teeny weensy tiny lil bug called a "GNAT". They truly are little fuckers sent from Mother Nature Hell. Mom, Dad and I were having a lovely day of family flounder fishing on the back bay this morning, when all of the sudden - they attacked. Swarms of microscopic little gnats were flying up my nose, biting any bit of skin that was showing, and dive bombing my eyeballs!! BAH! I am unable to keep my cool in situations like this, so I was flailing around like someone escaping from the looney bin.

For those of you blessed to live in an area without these little shits, I'll educate you on the nightmare that you have been able to escape:

Gnats, pronounced "NAT", are from the same insect family as (the equally despicable) flies and mosquitoes. Because they lay their eggs in wet places, they can be found mostly anywhere near a river, stream or bay. These tiny flies need the blood of warm-blooded animals to survive (ie you and me!). Their individual bites aren't TOO tragic -- they swell up a bit and itch like hell -- but the problem is, there is never just ONE gnat. They travel in hordes...hundreds of them, in a cloud that has encompassed your whole head! BAH.

SO: the next time the wind is blowing west and you think that there will be Gnats - pack hardcore pesticide-loaded bug repellent and wear long pants + long sleeves. And a hat. And socks and sneakers. And a scarf. Those bastards will take any bit of skin that they can sink their filthy teeth into! says...

Getting Rid of Gnats Naturally

3 cups of water,
4 tbsp of sugar
4 tbsp of vinegar,
3 tbsp of liquid soap (castille).

Mixed it all in a jar or a bowl and place where gnats are a problem

Sunday, May 29, 2011

I Hate Exercise.

Ugh. I hate exercise.

I love physical activities...surfing, yoga, rock climbing, and most sports in general...but exercise for the sake of exercise?? Bleh. No thank you. I hate it.

With that said, I have started walking with my mom. She walks twice a day, for 20 to 30 minutes. On her iPhone she has an application that counts your steps, keeps track of your distance and time, and calculates the calories. Since I've gotten home I have joined her once a day for a two mile, approximately 30 minute, powerwalk. We chat and gets a kick out of my himmen-n-haulin'. When we get back I drink a tall glass of water and then do about 15 to 30 minutes of restorative yoga. Each day the walk has gotten easier and less loathsome than the day before. And as much as I hate to admit it, the hour of activity leaves me feeling fresh and revived. My mom said that she takes a walk whenever she feels hungry or sleepy...and then she gets home feeling awake and full. So, you still won't find me going for a run or working out at the gym, but I think that there's something to these mini-mid-afternoon-walks. Plus I get in a little bit of mother-daughter bonding time, which is always good. And with the calories burned, I earn myself an extra glass of red wine at night.....

For all of you exercise-haters out there, I've found that these few bits help me:

1. keep your sneakers and socks by the door, as well as a comfortable outfit to walk in. it's like my theory of leaving the guitar out...if it's in the case, i rarely take it out...but if its just sitting there, when i walk by i pick it up.

2. keep it short and sweet. start out with 15 minute (1 mile) walks. i usually do things 120% and sometimes burn out. if i wasn't on my moms schedule my theory would be "oh man, im gonna kick ass and walk for an hour and a half!!! burn some serious calories!!", and after 3 days of that id be over it.

3. keep it light...if you're walking solo, wear an ipod and jam out to your favorite tunes. or better yet, walk with a buddy -- chatting as you walk makes the time pass, and i find that mom and i push eachother to walk a bit faster...

Benefits of walking

Walking, like other exercise, can help you achieve a number of important health benefits. Walking can help you:

  • Lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (the "bad" cholesterol)
  • Raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (the "good" cholesterol)
  • Lower your blood pressure
  • Reduce your risk of or manage type 2 diabetes
  • Manage your weight
  • Improve your mood
  • Stay strong and fit

All it takes to reap these benefits is a routine of brisk walking. It doesn't get much simpler than that. And you can forget the "no pain, no gain" talk. Research shows that regular, brisk walking can reduce the risk of heart attack by the same amount as more vigorous exercise, such as jogging.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Flounder FIshing with the Family.

Today we caught 3 keepers! I was the world champion...catching the FIRST, the BIGGEST and the MOST. I got two, dad got one. Mom didn't luck out with any keepers, but she was steady baiting our hooks and taking the fish off the player! With Dad's patch he has lost his depth perception, so sometimes putting a minnow on a hook is a bit more difficult than it used to be. I've just been a sissy and don't want to put the hooks through the poor little guys mouths. But just when I'm ready to give mom the Team Player award, she hit me in the face...with a fish!! She'd unhooked one of Dad's 15" throwbacks, and with two hands she went to throw it overboard...but didn't quite throw it high enough, and instead wailed me on the side of the head. Hahahahahahaha. She almost pee'd her pants because she was laughing so hard. Then we got a call from Mom's friend, Jan. Her boat broke down. SO, we towed her for a bit, headed back to the dock, and then we went to Mike's Seafood in Sea Isle City (MY FAVORITE REST. EVER) for their amaaaazing fried clam strips. LP met up with us and it was a full family affair. It feels good to have a wonderful afternoon with my outstanding family. There's nothing like fishing, talking shit, and then sharing a good meal with the people you love!!
Our favorite clam strips!!!
LP and Mom

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Summer Beach Yoga is BACK!! I'll be teaching again this year on 41st street beach in Ocean City on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday mornings...from 7am until 8am. Once again, the price is a modest $10per person, and all you have to bring is a mat! ALL LEVELS are encouraged to join this vinyasa-based class. I assure you that there is NO better way to start your day than a quiet morning on the beach, yoga to get the body mind and soul going, and then a nice long savasana by the sounds of the sea. The first class of the year will be on SUNDAY, JUNE 5th. I hope to see some familiar faces...and some new faces as well! Spread the word!

1st Class:
SUNDAY JUNE 5th @ 7am, $10, 41st street beach in Ocean City.

Full Summer Schedule:
7am - 8am. $10. 41st Street Beach.

Last years 41st Street Beach morning yoga crew!
Karen <3

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Another Bump in the Road.

So...I touch down in Philadelphia at 4:55pm tomorrow, just in time for the madness of Memorial Day Weekend! Same as every year I am back just in time to work the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the holiday. Called up my boss and she says that she doesn't need me for atleast another two weeks. Really?! I mean...Really?! Nobody likes being dicked around, but whatever...I'm accustomed to rolling with the punches with that place. I've been there 7 years and I don't expect it to change anytime soon. Though I am excited to get back to teaching yoga, I'm a bit anxious because lately my heart just hasn't been there...ever since my Dad got really sick I haven't felt that I have enough to give to my students. The catering is going to be making a big change this year too. Bah. The thought crosses my mind to just say 'screw it' and head to Australia. I'm missing Marny so much already, and its only been a few days. Anyways, I just opened my email to a message from my Mom. They got the results back from the MRI, and it's not great. They didn't give her specific details or information -- they are having a meeting later this week and then they will call her with specifics and their plan of action. SO, all in all, I'm stoked about heading home. I was excited to see my parents before, but now more than ever I feel an urgency to be back home. We have so much to be thankful for...when we thought that ground was crumbling beneath us we were able to have a great thanksgiving together, then a bonus with Christmas. While I was away my parents even renewed their wedding vows....they are happier and stronger than ever. They have had some incredibly difficult physical, emotional and mental obstacles this year...and they have persevered with a positive attitude and a smile on their faces, even during the darkest of times. SO...may not be the best news, but no matter what, as a family, we'll get through it. Mom's the best with words, so this is the email she sent:

Hey old friends, we are back. As many of you know we went to HUP (hospital of university of Pennsylvania) on Friday.Paul had his usual MRI and tonight I heard from my favorite nurse Eileen. She told me that Dr. O'Rourke looked at the MRI and was ADAMANT that we are not to get stressed , but the MRI shows a SLIGHT Progression of the disease. On Thursday the Brain Tumor Conference meets and they will discuss Paul's case. By Thursday night or hopefully Friday they will contact us and tell us what we will be doing. We don't know what course they will take. We are disappointed but not overly surprised. Since the last MRI Paul has had the vision problem , and his leg has also been giving him problems. He still never complains, and we are still very active. He's been fishing, gardening, and getting out and about just fine. He's pretty much of a one event a day guy now. If he fishes then he's done for the day, same with gardening etc. He is napping on some days , but for the most part nothing has changed. He looks great. He feels good ,except for the leg giving him a hard time. Don't worry I will be reporting EVERYTHING truthfully and in a timely fashion. Keep up the prayers and good vibes. And let's all have a GREAT Summer.Paul has his board ready and is hoping to get into the water soon, even if its just to paddle around. Cailin arrives back from her winter travels tomorrow, so we have a lot to be thankful for and excited about. Take care all, love, Doreen

*Here's some pictures from their little gathering at the house when they renewed their vows:

...Just For Adults.

El Gaucho
2505 First Avenue
Seattle, WA 98121
(206) 728-1337

A trip to the movie theatre has been taken to a whole new level by my beloved Seattle-ites. EL GAUCHO in downtown Seattle is a showing room for 21 and up. It's a very small, "boutique" theatre, with an epic lounge area and a full bar. Make sure that you book your ticket ahead online, otherwise you'll be shit outta luck -- it's guaranteed to sell out, no matter what is playing. It's tough to nail in a good seat get there EARLY and get to the front of the line if you plan to sit with the people you came with. Also, it's best to come with atleast one other person, that way one person can get the drinks, while the other waits in line, charges the door and secures good seats.

Pre-Show...the bar is 5 people deep... and this is no beer and "red" or "white" wine establishment...only the finest cocktails and a large selection of fine wines - served in proper glasses....ooolala heaven.

After an epic day of food (surprise!), wine (surprise!) and shopping (surprise!)...Janice, Julisa and I decided that it was only appropriate after trying on wedding dresses and planning Julia's upcoming nuptials to go and see the new movie BRIDESMAIDS. Janice selected us a nice bottle of white wine, Julisa nabbed us the best seats in the house, and I...well, I enjoyed the seats and the wine!! The movie was absolutely, slap-your-knees and grasp-your-sides HYSTERICAL. I think that we missed half of the movie because we were laughing so hard. There were several people in the cast from SNL, and they were sure not to disappoint. And anyone who has been in a bridal party can attest to the madness that goes down. Whether you are male, female, married, unwed, straight or sideways....this movie is a must see. And it's even better served with alcohol, because isn't everything??

By BEAUTIFUL Seattle Sisters...Janice and Julisa. Thank you for being two of the most outstanding, outgoing and simply epic people.
The small theatre...filling up....

Northwest Food & Friends.

Julisa scooped me up at the airport and into her arms after my loooong journey home from Asia. Despite going nearly 20 hours without sleep, I was ready and raring to go - as Julia knew I would be. We dropped my bags, picked up Gordon, I shed my flight clothes and threw on a nicer getup - and we were off for brunch! The food was absolutely delicious. I, as is my way when in Seattle, ordered a Burger & Fries. The fries were the highlight of brekky...Julia was pretty stoked on them (see photo below), and they were served with homemade ketchup. MmMmMmMm. Julia had fresh, heavenly biscuits topped with sauteed mushrooms in a gravy, and scrambled eggs. Gordon had a turkey club, and we shared a really fantastic grilled vegetable platter. Of course, we washed it all down with a champagne cocktail and some coffee, afterall -- it's not brunch without a little bubbly! Stuffed to the gills, we headed to the farmers market to pick up some local, organic goodies to bring to dinner at Carl and Erin's later that night. Then we headed home and Jules & Gordon putzed in their garden, enjoying the "hot sunny day" (aka, I had a sweater on, and socks, and a blanket wrapped around me!).

Jules, stoked on fries and champagne.
Gordon and Jules, gameplanning their veggie beds...

A few hours to digest, power naps all around, and then we were ready for round 2 of food and booze. We headed to Carl and Erin's. Carl and Erin aren't a couple, but they are a dynamic duo that is entertaining to hang out with and simply to observe!! Carl is...carl. He's a pretty eclectic, random, multi-faceted person...with not a single bad bone in his body, and generosity that is over the top. We aren't sure how old he is, but after years of research and asking around, Erin gathers that Carl's 49 or 50. The asian in him makes guessing his age nearly impossible. So, the age-less Carl owns a big, beautiful home just outside of Columbia City in Seattle. Erin, a young, boisterous traveler has been his roomate for a few years now. She works at La Medusa with Julisa and Gordon, as well as another side job. Living with Carl for next-to-nothing has allowed her to save save save and Carl will tell you that he enjoys the company of his outgoing roomie more than anything. It's a great partnership. Both Carl and Erin are AVID bikers....this is bicycles I'm talking about. But for shits and giggles they will ride to Portland, Oregon and back. Fucking hell! Erin has an enthusiastic addictive personality, and anything that she does she will put her whole heart and soul into. SO, in just a year she has taken her cycling to a whole new level -- investing in all the gear, a coach, and has even begun competing in races...and doing great!! Needless to say, I'm super proud of her. She truly is a go-getter...and I love to be around people like this. They are inspiring. Anyways - Carl and Erin. Not a romantic thing, but a roomate thing. They hosted us for dinner and we all pitched in to make an outrageously delicious, nutritious local meal. Carl had FRESH halibut filets that he did on the grill in a simple salt, pepper, lemon concoction that was absolutely divine. The fish was cooked to perfection - moist, tender, and fresh fresh fresh. We also did some grilled onions and asparagus that had been marinated a bit, grilled baked potatoes and a bread salad. Gordon did the bread salad, and no one could speak - we all just moaned our way through it.

Get a good loaf of bread, slice into 3/4 inch slices. Drizzle with olive and grill. Dice into cubes. Do the same to large scallions: drizzle, grill, dice. In a bowl mix fresh salad greens, bread and scallions. Drizzle with HIGH QUALITY extra virgin olive oil and HIGH QUALITY balsamic vinegar. Salt, Pepp. Enjoy.

First round of drinks was Carl's famous (deadly strong) margaritas, and then we finished the night with white wine.
The Dynamic Duo: Carl and Erin.
Erin, Gordon and Julia...snacking and slavin'.
Fabulous Foodies and Fabulous Friends: Erin, Me and Julisa.

We got home around 11:30pm, and I fell straight to sleep. In the previous two days I had slept only about 5 hours total, so I was wrecked. Jet-lagged and totally confused by the time difference. Well, at half past noon Julisa walked into my room and said "Are you alive??". BAH. Needed that! I felt bad that I missed quality time with my bestie, but sleep was necessary and it was nice that her and Gordon got some quality time together on their day off. We putzed around the house and drank a couple cups of coffee (Julia makes the best! It's the combination of Bialetti espresso and the beans that they use: HERKIMER COFFEE, its the BEST!). Then we got cleaned up and headed out on our expedition: wedding dress. We got to the plaza a bit early so we had to stop into H&M. Well, their bathingsuits were in - and they are GOOD this year. SO, I got a few... You know me, my weakness: coffee and bathingsuits. Yeeeew! We met Erin at a restaurant in the plaza after H&M for a glass of wine. Then we were off to JCREW for wedding dresses. This JCREW is one of the 5 in the country that actually have the wedding dresses at the store. It was supposed to be a "big deal", but the situation was this: a mono-toned college student who lacked enthusiasm, personality and wedding-dress-knowledge put us in a dressing room for the handicapped and said 'holler if ya need me'. Ha. Not quite what we were expecting, but we made it fun none-the-less. There weren't any winners, or even any semi-winners, but the process of elimination is good sometimes by realizing what you DONT want you come closer to knowing what you DO want.

Wine to warm up for the wedding dress excursion....
Miller...trying to figure out whats going on. Where do we sit? Where is the lady? WHERES THE CHAMPAGNE? This was supposed to be a consultation...
Julisa, paying homage to her Dad....
Yeah, no. No, No, and another No.
She'd look beautiful in anything....
Size 12 dresses, had to clip em up....

So, no dress. What now? Food and booze of course!! Janice met up with us and the 4 of us headed to SERIOUS PIE for some seriously outstanding pizza pies, appetizers, and .... wine. Grilled octopus and garbanzo beans, Greens with Caviar and Ham, 3 stupendous pies, a bottle of bubbly rose followed by a bottle of white, finished off with chocolate mousse and americano's. Boom. Get 'er done. Us ladies don't mess around.

Jules, Me and the PIG @ Serious Pie. This photos for you Dad! We love you.

Stop & Search

I was stopped and searched at every.single.airport. Thoroughly searched...the only thing that they didn't do was a friggin cavity search!!! Why? I'm not sure. A blonde haired girl with a smile from ear to ear - in an airport, where everybody is pissed off and pushing their way onto the plane. I guess I stood out a bit and looked like I was up to no good?? Who knows. But they were all bound to check me out. In Taiwan, in Japan, and then in Seattle. I was a stones throw from Julias arms just outside the baggage claim when I was asked to step to the side. I waited for 30minutes before they finally got to me - and then they went through EVERY.SINGLE.BAG. I'm not the most organized packer there were panties everywhere, wet bathingsuits, and 'lady' medicine. After a thorough and somewhat embarrassing search, followed by a MILLION questions - they finally let me go saying that I was clear. What a way to end a 5 month trip and 26 hours worth of traveling.....

Sunday, May 22, 2011

1st Leg, 1st Class

As has been our way, on my final day we woke up, had a long leisurely brekky followed by some Internet time. We lounge around the room or pool and take a power nap. Before I'd left Bali for Lombok all those weeks ago, I'd left a backpack with heaps of stuff in it with my friend Enrico. So Marny and I rented a bike and we headed out to retrieve my belongings in Padang. It felt good to get out of busy Kuta for the afternoon...out by the Puket it's simply beautiful...REAL Bali. It was great to sit by the sea one last time and catch up with Enrico-- he is a very special soul, with an innocent and positive outlook and energy that's contagious. Said goodbye to my friends, scooped up my belongings and then Marny and I were back to Kuta. We had some lunch, a final feast of Nasi Campur, and then we went to our favorite spa Shinkei for massages. The treatment we picked was Head Neck and Shoulder massage....and it was epic. They let us lay side by side in the serene spa as we got massaged, and it was one of the most blissful hours I'd spent in Shinkei. Greasy and glistening, with smiles on our faces, we strolled back to the room for a well deserved nap. As we walk through town, everyone calls us the "honeymooners" or "the cute couple"...and I gotta say, I Feel like I've been on a honeymoon. I'm in love and feel loved in return- and we spend our days going out to eat good food, getting massages, or just enjoying one anthers company- talking and talking and talking. Marny treats me like a princess and understands me like a best friend. Though we both came to Indo to indulge in our mutual passion for surfing, the past few days we couldn't bother to even make it to the beach! With only a few hours left we went for dinner...I had my one Bintang, and Marn had his coca cola, and we played a few final rounds of shithead (I won...just in case anyone was wondering). The tears started at dinner and didn't really stop after that. If I pulled it together, then I'd look over and Marny'd have started. Christ almighty. Took a taxi to the airport and Marny finagled his way past security with no ID and no ticket, and kept me company while I waited to check in. Few more rounds of shithead (ahem...again, I reign victorious...) and then it was time for the OFFICIAL goodbye. You coulda mopped both of us up off the floor, and it only got worse once we walked away from one another. As Marny said, I felt both incredibly Full and Empty at the same time. It wasn't long before I boarded the plane, and with sad swollen eyes I realized that I had a seat in first class! I texted Marny the good news and 'goodnight', and before the plane even took off I closed my heavy eyelids and was fast asleep in my oversized, comfy reclining chair. Woke up feeling fresh and rested, sleeping for most of the 5 and a half hour flight...a rare feat to wake up after a long haul with no leg, back or neck cramps! I was first off the plane and my first stop was for a proper coffee. Then had a mini-meltdown because my iPhone died. It has been on the fritz all morning and then BOOM. DEAD. F*%k!!!! Had another mini-internal-meltdown before remembering a trick that the Apple people had taught my mom for when your iPhone is acting up. Tried it, let it rest for a bit, and now I'm back in action!! Hallelujah. Posted up at my gate now here in Taiwan, shed a few tears after looking through some photos from the past few days, and getting ready to board the plane for my next stopover, Tokyo, Japan. Feeling really overwhelmed with emotions (yeah yeah- you know me...). I have been blessed yet again with an amazing year of travel-- filled with outstanding people, unforgettable experiences, and as always- heaps of delicious meals.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Final Hours.

Final hours with Marny, final hours in Indonesia. Bah. Trying to just soak up as much as I can. In a few hours I begin my journey home. First stop is in Seattle for a few days before heading back to the East Coast. It's been good...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Me, Marny and lots of Massages!!

Well, we decided NOT to leave Kuta, Bali. It's just too much trouble to travel anywhere else...taking about a full day to get somewhere and a full day to get back. So, we've committed to staying here in Kuta, and we are taking full advantage of all that this little city has to offer. We have indulged every single day in spa treatments...yesterday getting full body massages and ear candling. We got out for delicious meals and have been lounging by the pool...soaking up our final few days together. So, not much else to report!! Just enjoying my time left here in Indonesia with my Marny.

Prayers + Positivity.

Prayers and Positivity have worked WONDERS for us this year.... and its time that I call in this favor again. Dad was supposed to be dead by Thanksgiving, and he's still going strong!!! We've been lucky this winter, the doctors let my dad have a break from treatments. But now we have an important MRI coming up -- so if you could all lend a hand...positive vibrations, prayers, love...we need all we can get. The MRI is on May 20th. Thanks everyone...I'll keep you updated. The results should come in a week or so after the MRI.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Back in Bali.

Marny and I are back in Bali. We are staying at a beautiful, peaceful place in Kuta called Ayu Lili Garden...not far off the main road. Since getting back we have indulged in facials, massages, reflexology, and of course...epic meals! We've met up with Sean, Rosary, and Jay -- renewing their visas, only to head back to Sumbawa as soon as possible. We are putzing around for one more day, but head out tomorrow for a little island a few hours away...going to catch some surf and sun on the beach before I head out late on the 21st....

I love Marny with or without a beard, but I'm a sucker for his clean shaven face after a cut-throat shave from the barber. ...

Bye Bye Sumbawa

Sumbawa was pretty good to me. After a week my two travel partners Oscar and B were ready for somewhere new. I too had purchased a ticket back to Bali and was ready for the next adventure, but then last minute decided to forfeit my ticket and stay. Why? Im not too sure. I didn't love the's pretty heavy, and the lineup is super crowded. But I just felt it in my gut that I should stick around for a bit. As you can see from the blog below, I made the right choice. Marny insisted that I move out of Puma and into Aman Gati with him...Aman Gati being the fanciest most expensive place to stay in town. Fresh sheets every day, great breakfasts and a POOL...and Marny of course! Thankfully it wasn't TOO big my following two weeks in town (aside from a few ginormous days), and it was great to surf the Peak with my man. Marny is goofy and I'm regular, so surfing together is a harmonious thing. Marn takes the lefts and I take the rights. We even split the Peak quite often! I swear that when Marny kissed me in the water that I got more waves....everybody is pretty intimidated by him and he sits out the back, so since it was clear we were together nobody messed with me! Yahooo!! We had two surfs a day, and I'd spend the afternoons visiting my friends 100meters down the road at Puma. Then, dinner at Lakey Beach Inn. For 4 weeks straight I had dinner at Lakey Beach all but 2 nights! I love routines and the routine I had in Sumbawa was great. When we left I was sad to say some goodbyes...I became great friends with Sean, Storky, and Shoko -- and leaving them definitely weighed heavy on my heart. But Sean and Stork are Narrabeeners, so I'll be seeing them soon enough in Australia, and Shoko and I already have plans to meet up throughout the year across the globe. Lakey Peak, you were good to gave me great friends, great waves, great food, great memories, and a great man. What more could a girl ask for??

Shoko and Me, having dinner at Lakey Beach Inn.

The whole crew of riff-raff....

Me and Marny, my Kamushka <3

Goodbye Sumbawa!!

Saturday, May 14, 2011


"Cinta", Bahasa indonesia for "Love". I'm in it...swimming in it, living in it and loving every second of it. World, meet Marny. We met here in Lakey Peak, Sumbawa, Indonesia. This photo of us is a few days post shave, but when we first met he was a hairy, hairy man. He's from Australia and lives a similar lifestyle to me. He is an OUSTANDING surfer and an equally epic snowboarder. He lives in his house in Australia, on the same property as his parents, for a little more than half the year. He spends 3 months then in Hakuba, Japan being a guide in the backcountry. He's trained to survive avalanches and he takes snowboarders deep into Japans mountains. After Japan he heads to Indo for 2 month in Lakey and one month at G-Land. I'd been in the lineup with him a few times and seen him around town, but he scared me a bit. He was hairy and one of the top dogs in the aggressive, extremely talented Lakey Peak lineup. We had dinner with the same group for about a week, and after talking to him I lost any bit of intimidation that I'd had for him before. Then, we went to the ATM in Dompu- the day after I decided to extended my stay here and forfeit my ticket to Bali. There was supposed to be several people in the car to town, but everybody bailed except me and Marny. Well the day long adventure turned into lunch, coffee, dinner, dessert, then tea. It was instant love. We talked and talked and talked...barely taking a break to breathe or swallow our food. I, of course, spoke endlessly about my parents....and so did Marny. He shares a deep love with his parents as I do, and their lives are just as intertwined as well. He doesn't drink because he just doesn't really like it-- but he drinks HEAPS of Coca Cola, and he puts down a fair share of ice cream as well. He's a to build a house and then fix everything in it. His art medium is sculpture- making large scale pieces out of recycled metal. He's well traveled and funny and handsome....but best of all, he treats me like a goddess and is so very in love. Well, I gotta say, the feeling is mutual. We've both shed a few tears already at the thought of having to part, but we will only have to suffer the distance for a few short months. I made a commitment to work, and I want to see my parents - so I'm definitely headed home. BUT, Marny wants to come out and meet my parents in October and then I'm gonna hop a flight with him back to Australia. It's all happened pretty quickly, but when it's good it's good and when it's right it's right, and I deserve it!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Ombak Besar

Ombak Besar. Big Wave.

The waves are huge. The whole bay is shutting down-- nowhere can hold the swell, except for Nungas. Marny, Brian and a few others braved the bombs, but the rest of us decided to sit this one out. Luckily my friend Dallas has a house, an ammmmazing house, on Nungas-- so we packed our bags and posted up for the day. We packed water and cookies and snacks and have passed the time swimming, lounging, doing headstands, bronzing and watching Marny through the binoculars, getting barrel after barrel.