Another week under our belt! Each week that passes, I’m more and more amazed with this family. We had a friend ask us this week “would you do this again?” and it was really tough to answer. Brent summed it up perfectly I think.
“This trip has had a lot of firsts. First time travelling this far. First time travelling this long with all 5 of them. First time not working this long. First time being away this long in a place where everything is different.”
With all those firsts, it’s really quite humbling and amazing that we have had this opportunity, but it does leave us spinning quite a bit! I think we have grown closer as a family, and also more independent. I think we have let go of some fears, and tried new things, new food, new ideas.
Here are some of the things we did this week.
Brent and I have had a chance to explore a bit on Scoopy this week. We ventured off to a few cool shops to check out some furniture. Brent is looking for the exact-perfect-piece of wood that will become the centerpiece of our new home: the dining table.
Being parents of 5, when we look into the future, we realize that a table that seats 8 is not suitable. Between there being 7 of us to start, the moment you add in family, friends, aunts, uncles, grandparents – there just isn’t anywhere to sit.
Luckily, Bali is home to amazing and talented folks who specialize in teak and suar wood furniture.
The pieces I have seen here are nothing short of absolutely breathtaking.
Now, it’s not like shopping at fancy furniture showrooms at home. Oh no. This is all open air, usually under a tarp or a grass roof, and right in the middle of a workshop.
We stopped in at about half a dozen places, when we came across Kenny’s Furniture. We spotted a teak table from the street, and decided to check out the store. The salesperson was nice and helpful. When Brent described what we were looking for, she said “Oh, we have some more pieces in the back, would you like to see?”
Weaving through furniture, stepping over various items, and out the back door we went. Following her through a back workshop and through a non-descript entrance, we found out that “the back” actually meant “10,000 square foot storage building, filled wall to wall with beautiful pieces of wood, all covered in dust and cobwebs.” The pictures don’t do much justice, but I hope you get the idea:
Snorkeling for Shipwrecks
This week brought us far, far, FAR away from our home in Seminyak to the north-east(ish) coast near Tulamben. This is the site of the Liberty Shipwreck. Back in WWII the Liberty Ship was hit by Japanese torpedos and beached at Tulamben. Then, in 1963, Mount Agnung erupted, and the eruption and lava caused the ship to slip off the beach and settle about 3 metres underwater on a sand slope.
The ship itself is 130m long, so it slopes down under water to a depth of about 30m all said and done. Since 1963, it has become home to some lovely coral and many, many fish. It also happens to be the most famous dive site in Bali.
Luckily, because it is so close to the surface, it is also a fantastic snorkel site. So off we went.
Here is what I learned on snorkel day:
- You just never know what will enthrall your kids. I have taken them zip lining, and to a killer waterpark. Yet, they reported this activity to be the “best one yet”. I think this is because there is just nothing else like it they have ever seen.
- You can never properly predict a panic attack. Yep, I had one. A doozy of one. In the ocean. Wearing a snorkel mask. Out of absolutely nowhere, and for no identifiable reason.
- Go-Pro cameras are freakin’ cool. I have attached some shots from Emerson’s footage for you to enjoy!
So, it started out as a normal day. We got up as a family, ate breakfast, and met the diving company’s pickup vehicle at the hotel next door. The company itself was amazing – they provided snorkel equipment, two guides just for our group, lunch, transportation and water. It was a long ride (see the map – we drove clear across the island!), but the kids did awesome. I was excited – I had done some snorkeling before, and loved it.
Ocean Panic Attacks are a Thing
I have no idea what went wrong. The sea was a little rough, but nothing outrageous. I’m a confident swimmer, and I have snorkeled before. We went out as a group of 9, so it wasn’t like I was alone or stranded. But, something just snapped. I secured my mask and snorkel, and was enjoying the swim toward the wreck. Every so often, I’d pop up and count snorkel tips. (Yes, but it’s a mom thing!) Then, I’d continue on.
All of a sudden, I felt as though my mouthpiece was gagging me. My heart started racing and I felt like I couldn’t catch my breath. I lifted my head to the surface, removed my mouthpiece and thought “That was weird.”
And then it got worse. Much, much worse. I became scared that someone was going to attack me (like, who exactly, would randomly attack ME in the middle of the ocean with a bazillion other divers and snorkelers around?). I was convinced that fish were touching me (they weren’t), and I was absolutely certain that my entire family was in grave danger (No danger. None whatsoever.)
And then, I saw Brent. He came to the surface and said “Are you ok?” Somehow, those three words brought me back to reality. I was ok. No harm was coming. But I had to get out of the water.
So, I swam back to shore as calmly as I could, and stood on the beach and watched Brent and the kids snorkel. It ended up being a great day. They swam and played for about 3 hours, then we sleepily drove home.
I’m still a bit baffled at what triggered or caused this in me. I’ve never had it happen before – and I certainly hope it doesn’t happen again, or at the very least, that it happens while I’m on dry land.
Back on dry land, we ventured to our family favourite spot to eat – a great, healthy place called “Go Fresh Life” that makes beautiful salads and cold pressed juice. It’s such a relief to find a spot that is both healthy and appealing to the kids.
Stay tuned for white water rafting, our big move, and some ink coming next week! We miss everyone back home!