sitting in our prague appartment, indo music blaring from my comp – downloaded for educational purposes of course – with a/c on, i can’t stop thinking of how bizarre life has become – i spent last 10 months in tropics, without using a/c one single time in my house – only to arrive to central europe to switch it on. super dry and hot, prague being good 15’ C warmer than ubud, all the asphalt and cement just making the heatwave much worse.. but still happy to be here, also happy knowing i won’t stay too long (-;
nothing really big happened during the last 3 months in bali – pretty much business as usual. while i stayed at home the rest of the family travelled a bit. dan and linda had an amazing time skiing in japan in april – powder snow and sushi, onsen and blossoming sakuras. dan also joined dom for a school service trip to the indonesian island of rote – where they dived with huge oceanic mantas and dom learnt about conservation. not too bad to be a parent volunteer for a trip like that! finally dan went on his ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ motorbike trip to mongolia with an incredible group of friends. you can watch a short shot by one of them. looks like mongolia is a country to visit!!!
meanwhile i enjoyed the quirks of our island and had my share of kids – 1-2-3, in different number and configuration.
mt. agung erupted every couple of days but luckily nothing major. couple of times our garden, pool, bikes etc were covered in ash but so far not too much drama.
following linda and her temporary brother kaleo, dom also became a certified diver and interestingly finds observing the tiniest sea creatures most relaxing. now i’m the odd one out – honestly, nothing better than sitting with a book and cup of tea whilst the rest of the family boards a boat and off they go for a day of diving.. ((-;
we still enjoy the nature (outside – and – inside our house..) – beautiful wasps started to build a nest in linda’s wardrobe and couple of bats decided they wanted to ‘hang-out’ – literally – in our bedroom. can you imagine my surprise when i woke up very early in the morning hearing some squeaks.. and realised that it’s not only the mosquito net hanging from the frame of my bed – but also a pair of bats! as they keep coming back regularly, linda named them cleo and king tut and i must say it’s been one of the nicest experiences to have these two little creatures as my new pets. just wonder if now i’m officially a witch…
i didn’t enjoy half that much when i woke up hearing crunching noises coming from under my bed.. mia the cat was ‘carving’ a rat.. but it’s her job after all!
now my year with 3 kids is over (unless someone else wants to send her/his kid our way? guys??? twins anyone?). as we say in slovak – a rock fell off my heart – as i was really relieved that nothing bad befell kaleo. on the other hand we are all a bit sad as it was amazingly wonderful to have him around. the family dynamics changed for better, i feel we talked more, made more effort, had more fun.. and the satisfaction survey conducted by the ex-corporate member of our family showed everyone seemed to enjoy the ride! i believe that apart from having to witness some of the quirks and arguments of our family kaleo has learnt to appreciate nature (eg not to fear spiders and snakes so much anymore 😉 ) and gracefully face challenges that our tropical island occasionally throws our way.
after couple of attempts i sadly realised i’m not to become a skateboarding champion anytime soon. kids’ progress has been embarrassingly incomparable to mine. luckily there are always new crazy ideas in my head – and after watching crouching tiger hidden dragon i found something i really love! so you can see me now, 4 to 5 times a week running around in white outfit, sweating and kicking my legs.. just a word of warning. don’t mess with me! and look up white crane kung fu if you want to know more (-;
the end of the school year was full on and a bit mad as usual. it was the last year of primary school for this family – linda is now officially a middle schooler. yeah!!! as part of finishing primary each of the kids had to come up with a project – something impacting the community in either social, ecological or any other positive way. hilariously linda (from personal gruesome experience) chose to fight the lice infestation at green school and created her own lice prevention spray.. anybody wants one? tested on parents and developed with lice passion (-: she finished the school with a party – but no fancy dresses here as the party was in school’s mud pit (-; beautiful graduation ceremony left us feeling tiny bit nostalgic but ready for the big school!
kaleo has graduated from middle school and as he is not ready to return to dubai as yet, his mom and sister are moving to bali too! he won’t be living with us anymore but we are happy our dear dubai friends will be nearby (-;
dominik finished first year of high school and in his own words – it was the best year ever. i’m super impressed with the courses he took, topics covered, teachers.. and with his hard work. yes he drives me nuts very often but i have to admire his dedication, interest and passion for learning.
as for some local experience kids and i managed to spend record 6 hours at the immigration waiting for student visas – very educational experience. in all those hours only one person lost it – and it wasn’t the immigration officer. this country is definitely giving foreigners lessons in patience, tolerance and especially acceptance of what IS. visas issued so we can come back! we also experienced indonesian general elections – and the interesting way the government was trying to calm down the situation after the results were announced. they didn’t exactly shut down the entire internet – it was just not possible to send pics and videos via whatsapp. no pics or videos on either facebook or instagram. just plain text. quite interesting how they manage to control us! so far so good. even if we have no right to vote, we are happy with the results!
as you might know, we somehow ended up with 3 bali dogs. when i compare them with some of the poor dogs you can see in the streets, they are lucky to have us. but we are just as lucky to have them. bali dogs generally go where they want, when they want and do not need humans to accompany them. in spite of that while ago i have decided to join them on their walks. in the late afternoons (after the kung fu practice 😉 )we walk the rice paddies behind our house. it’s not a long walk but quite magical. our 2 young girls run like crazy – misty (or pigsty) would charge through the rice paddies, chin deep in the muddy water just for the pure joy of it. daisy on the other hand would daintily hop over the hedges making sure she doesn’t get dirty – only forgetting herself when the hunting instinct overcomes her – and then i have to run to save a duck or chick. our 3-legged veteran spotty runs for a while but then enjoys lounging under a blossoming hibiscus tree. it’s fascinating to see how different their personalities are and yet they have something in common – the incredible joy to be alive. these regular walks also tuned me in to the nature surrounding us at every step – with fascination i observe the rice cycle, paddies looking almost unchanged day after day yet going from the muddy fields, rice seedlings in the nursery, planting, growing.. suddenly the colours change from brown to bright green.. only to change to golden.. i’m so lucky that the dogs take me for a walk!
now in prague for a while facing the civilisation, kids spend time with grandparents and cousins, i see my beloved friends and family.. and i’m being slowly cooked. dom has his ears pierced and hair cut and dyed – and there are still 4 weeks to go (-;
have a great summer (or winter if down under). let me know how is life for you!