Bali Blog : A Chat With The Inner Teacher, And A Vegan


Do you have a voice that talks inside your head?

I do. Not the crazy kind. But I guess we're all a little bit crazy in a way. I hear it all the time when I train at the studio. "Do one more rep", "Lock your knees, or you're doing this whole damn thing again", or "Don't eat that!"

Today it asked me: "Why are you so afraid of becoming a yoga instructor? You've been eager to become everything else." fair point. To which, I had no answer.

To all the yogis out there, I adore you.  

Food updates for today. I got through the second day of my vegetarian life. Yey! The Balinese are such great cooks. Seriously. These guys make delicious healthy meals. Now adding Indonesian to my list of food preferences. On a side thought, there better be good places in Manila. Please, please, please. 

My favorite meal today was my lunch. I had a big helping of hard shell tacos, and lassi. It had beans, lots of them cooked different ways, fresh veggies, yogurt, and cashew cheese. I realized that I prefer the savory vegetarian dishes rather than the sweet. Fruit bowls are nice, but are too sweet, even if you ask to take out all the natural sweeteners. So, I think I'm sticking with the salty, spicy, warm kinds. I also found out that if given a choice between vegetables and fruits, I prefer vegetables. Fruits in large amounts make me want to puke. Something I only learned today. I am also not a fan of smoothie bowls, which I was so expecting myself to be a fan of. Turns out, I don't like them. I also don't like the temperature when it sits in a bowl for too long. So yeah, there. 

Another food thought: There's this brand in Manila called Manabites. Their stuff reminds me of the things I've been having here. Perhaps the inspiration came from Bali. Hi Chrissie! 

Also, I must note that Vegans are so entertaining to have lunch dates with. I though I had a lot of questions when I order, these guys are something else. They ask about every single ingredient that goes in the food they order. Every. Single. Thing. They make my preferences seem amateurish, which I find truly delightful. Hi people who call me picky! Hiiiii.

Of all the questions I've heard today this one was my favorite: "How did you make your cashew milk". You have to indulge me on this. It was not a question of what was in it. It was a question of HOW it was made. A process! A method not answerable by yes or no. I laughed more than I should have. In a good, weird kind of way. Much respect for these guys. All love. I was at Bali Buda, and this order story had a happy ending. Turns out you can't just use water to make cashew milk. You have to "activate" the nut. It's a pretty long process that my lunch date explained to the waiters. They even called someone out to take notes. They said they would adapt her method of making cashew milk from now on, and also I learned something new. Now how to convince Army Navy to take out that damn chicken cube from all their chicken tacos back in Manila *fumes* (It's for a different story altogether, but they now make mine without the cube. Hehe)

Life in this part of the city is very sustainable. Everyone does recycling, you even have shops that upcycle discarded items. Anyone can come and drop off stuff that can be reused, like bottles, cartons, paper, etc. Some restaurants offer their patrons a free treat, for every x number of discarded bottles dropped off at their store. As for straws, I've seen all sorts here, plastic ones literally do not exist. Glass, bamboo, wood, metal, all kinds, in all the restaurants I've been to. It's a wonderful thing. I wish more communities were like this.

On a different note, I had my first experience teaching aerial yoga today. We took turns teaching each other a few of the sequences we've learned during the session. We also got to assist in a public class later in the evening. The demographic of the students that come into this studio is so varied. The teachers say that classes are always full, but most of the people that come to class are just passing through. Most of them travelling, or on a spiritual retreat. I wonder what that's like. If all I share with a student is an hour for the rest of both our lives, how do I make that hour transformative? How do I share the best of what I can give in a single hour, given that that's all we have together? I'm making the promise to keep this in my mind in every class I teach. 

Today's reaffirmation -- I REALLY do love to teach. 

After today's session, I got to hang out with a few of my classmates in the course. One of them was Anna, she was born in Germany, and left home when she was a teen. She was sharing her story of what brought her here. Among the many things, she told me that she once walked the span of several countries in Europe for a pilgrimage. Her longest continuous walk was in Spain, it took her 47 days to complete the trip. She has also been to Manila, and has experienced sleeping on the road, inside an abandoned van somewhere between Cebu and Dumaguete. She's publishing a book soon. She's 27.

Final thought: I am less scared of my room. I'm going to bed now.