One girl One mat One heart One love. OM

It’s beginning to look a lot like…. December 15, 2012

Filed under: bali,gratitude,holidays,travel,yoga — britpressley @ 5:48 am

I never wanted to leave. But the time finally came. As I sat in the lobby of my last hotel I suddenly noticed that Christmas music was playing. I hadnt really thought about christmas, since beach and 80 degree weather don’t really illicit the holiday mood. However as silent night played through the speakers I actually got a little sentimental. I didn’t want to the leave the beauty and warmth, but I was ready to go home. To see my family and my friends and to hug my kittens and snuggle up by the fire place.
I have learned so much these last few weeks and I hope I can maintain the peace and comfort I’ve found here. I know it will be difficult but I want to really try. Mediation comes easy when you’re on a beach in the sunset. Perhaps not so easy when you live In a bustling metropolis. But I’m committed to trying.
I am so grateful to have had this opportunity. I want to especially thank my father for his support and love and his help In making this trip a reality for me. It was the best Christmas,birthday and everything present a daughter could ever have. Thank you to my whole family for their patience and encouragement. I love you all so much.
Since I’m no longer “Brit In Bali” I’m not sure if I’ll continue to blog. But perhaps I can maintain the spirit of Brit in Bali and share some stories from time to time.
Gratitude is the greatest lesson I’ve learned. I read a study that showed people who take the time to write down 3 things they are grateful for everyday live exceptionally more happy lives than those who don’t.
So take a minute or 2 today, tomorrow and forever to remember what you’re grateful for. You do t have to think too hard to realize there are so many things to be grateful for. Give it a try. You may find yourself smiling just a little bit more.
Namaste, Om Swastiastu and Merry Christmas,


Sunrise/sunset December 12, 2012

Filed under: bali,gratitude,travel,yoga — britpressley @ 4:16 am

The mosquito bites woke me at 1:45 am. Which was good because my alarm was set for 2am. At 2:30 I quietly tiptoed out of the Ashram to meet Merritt and my driver,Yande as we headed out to hike to the top if Batur volcano. I must admit, it’s a good thing I had no idea what I was in for because had I known I might not have been on board;).
The hike took about 3 hours to the top. It was pitch black and mostly straight up. I was wearing Birkenstocks! ( my sneakers which I schlepped all the way here and never wore, had been accidentally thrown into the donation pile so sandals were my only option.)
My outfit by the way….epic.
Sandals with socks? Check. Oddly out of place NC state baseball cap? Check. Heinous oversize jacket tied around my waist? Check. Headlamp flashlight? Check. I only wish I had a fanny pack to complete the look.

I slid and lost my balance a lot. Our guide finally made me hold his hand because I think I was scaring him to death bc I kept losing my balance on the rocks!)
Once we finally made it to the peak it was absolutely breathtaking! Out guide prepared us some eggs and a banana sandwich as we watched the most epic sunrise I’ve ever witnessed.
The climb down wasn’t much easier than the way up….for me maybe even harder actually. Ging downhill is actually more challenging for someone with knee issues. But I made it safely to the bottom and enjoyed a monkey parade en route as well.

On our way in Yande took us to a coffee plantation for a cup of brew and then it was back to the ashram to collect my things.
We headed out of town and settled on spending the last day and night in Sanur. I needed one last day at the water.
Yande made an arrangement for me to see a Balinese healer named Cokorda Rai of Singapadu village. He is in his 80’s and very well regarded. Yande told me he was of the “highest caste” which meant he was a noble high priest even higher than a king.
The experience was another highlight. I spoke to him briefly and then he did a physical check looking for pain. I won’t go in to the details (I’m happy to share in person if you’re interested). But basically he found the source if my pain….and I swear on my life…he did some sort of “energy clearing” and the pain was gone! He advised I take a special herbal concoction which he would prepare for me I order to keep the pain away. I believe it will work.

The day ended on the beach watching yet another magnificent Bali sunset. Colors that would make crayola envious.
Gratitude. I am blessed.














The most amazing day December 9, 2012

Filed under: bali,elephants,gratitude,travel,yoga — britpressley @ 3:23 am

The first day post yoga training was pure heaven.

Late Friday night I checked into the Anand Ashram. It describes itself as a place for spiritual travelers and I was really drawn to it. Every morning there is mediation at 6am followed by a fire blessing ceremony at 630 and then yoga at 7. There are breaks throughout the day for those who want to venture into town. So it’s not like a traditional strict ashram. There is midday mediation and chanting and also an evening one. (nothing is mandatory)
I really like it here. The accommodations are simple but very clean and just what I need. There’s even a small, but refreshing “Healing pool” as they call it.

After mediation yesterday the women who is kinda like the receptionist asked if I would be joining for yoga. I said yes of course and she said, “good you will teach it”. I thought she was kidding but she was not. She is the usual teacher but I suppose she thought this would be my contribution to the community. I was a little flustered but i went for it. It was amazing! I knew I wanted to teach right away but did not think it would be the next day after my course ended! Nor when I imagined my first class did I think it would be at a beautiful outdoor temple in Bali! So blessed.
I taught again this morning only this time with a plan and sequence prepared. It was awesome for me. And i think the students liked it as well:)

After class I was picked up to head out to the elephant safari park. This was the moment I had waited for for months. Yes I came to Bali for yoga…blah blah blah….bring on to the elephants.

Words can’t really describe so that’s why I took about a million pictures! I was there for over 5 overs and never wanted to go! Luckily it started to pour or i might have had to move in.
It was definitely one of the most incredible experiences of my life. I love these animals. Each one has it’s own mahoun which means trainer or rider. And the bind they have is amazing as you can see from one of the photos below. You can really see and feel the love I this place.

After returning to town I walked around for hours, became exhausted and treated myself to a massage;) 1 hour for $7. Sure ill splurge.
After which I met a new driver who is so sweet. I promised him I would “make him some work”. He drove me to an awesome raw food and vegan cafe (they have non veg stuff too but thats their speciality). He then picked me up and brought me to the ashram. I’ve hired him again today to pick me up and take me back to town. He’s so sweet and it’s super fun to drive through the hills on the motorbike! (he has a car but the bike is preferred around here and it’s fun)

Without further ado….