Katja and Arne's travel stories

To make others happy


Small gestures may make a world of difference for others. Why is it so hard to do them regularly then?

The smallest things or gestures can sometimes make a day turn from terrible to grand. In just seconds can you lighten someone’s life or make a new friendship that can last a lifetime. The joy I saw in the face of the chef at warung Local yesterday was just inspiring.
As some of you may remember did Katja take a photo of him and me with the small guitars last time we were there. We had it printed to the cost of about a dollar and brought it to him last night. We decided that we would have a last meal at the warung Local before our time is up here in Ubud. It is still a gem that is not listed on TripAdvisor or any other such services, and it is still frequented by the local guys. “Clark Gable” from yesterday’s trip to Tanah Lot rated it number one for food in the area. “Good food, cheap price”, as he exclaimed. And we agree on both accounts. We had the best meal yet, yesterday and really enjoyed the chili on top of the good flavors. When we asked if he got any Bintang (there are several large Bintang bottles on the window still) he said yes, but ended up sending a young guy to the store on his motorbike to pick some up. So straight from the shelf at the supermarket to our table. He sat down himself at our little table and brought with him a glass of Arak Bali. He topped that of with a little beer from my glass, and we talked a little, even though he doesn’t speak English.
He’s an uneducated fella with a poor mother who never had the money to school him and he has now run the night shift at the warung for three years. His mother has the day shift and this guy the night. Upon which he drinks a half liter of the Arak Bali… “Any more and you get drunk, it’s just what you need to stay pepped up for the night”. Probably not the best dietary advice, but I guess more common than not.

Men and the chef @ warung local . METAL!

Men and the chef @ warung local . METAL!

When we sat there taking, eating and sharing a drink we produced the picture of him and me. He just got ecstatic! He laughed, showed it to his friends and smiled with his whole body. More Arak Bali was brought forward, this time a big cup which he then divided into both Katja and mine glass. “Toss!”, at least it sounded like that, means Cheers in Indonesia. More drinks and more smiles. Turns out he can’t play the guitar but do some drumming and the the traditional Balinese instrument (the one you saw Katja play at the cooking class). But he is a great fan of Metal. That much we got from his rather poor English, and from (what we assume to be) his wife. The picture will be hung on the counter or on the wall, and we look forward to finding it there on our next return to Ubud.
I did buy a little guitar to bring with me on the rest of the trip. And the history it now possesses after last night just make it that more valuable to us.

I have written several posts about the yoga practice and how Katja gets into a lot of hard poses, whereas I on the other hand is of lesser complex standard. I am amazed that nobody has offered me some cheese with that whine. But anyway, today is a day of days! I did three things no one thought Humongely possible:
– I went from crow to tripod headstand unsupported. To me this is HUGE! The only one who saw it was the pretty decent yoga man on the mat behind me. I had eye contact with him on the way up, and got a lot of encouragement there. After a not-so-soft landing it was fist pumping and cheers on my own behalf

– I did side crow pose left and right for 1 second. Don’t worry if you don’t know. Just be happy for me. The one second prove I can, and now it’s just a matter of postpone the landing a second at the time.

So it does pay off to practice. It’s not like practice makes perfect (perfect practice makes perfect), but it do help to practice and not give up. I honestly thought I would not do the side crow in ages due to lack of both flexibility and strength, but by trying I achieved. Oh, did you read the post about being alone when achieving things? With no diploma and applause? It happened that way yesterday, but it was no less meaningful than if someone saw.
Me 2 – hard poses 198.

Katja on the other hand did 4 classes of yoga yesterday. That’s 6 hours of yoga. Twice my amount, and enough to be noticed by a lot of people for her marathon day.
Among the classes we did you’ll find Yin yoga. It was a first time for us both and it was really good. It’s a slow moving class where you’ll hold the poses for 3-5 minutes. It’s basically what we normally would call a stretching class. Very soft, but dammed hard. Being in your pose and feeling the deep stretch and the pain that follows with it…that’s hard to put in words. And just when you think of letting go you hear Cat’s soft voice:”Just a few more breaths in this pose…5…….4…..” And you suck it up and hold a little longer. After a Power yoga class first, 30 min break then the Yin just wore me out. That Katja did 90 minutes before the Power and then 90 more in the evening just blows me away.

Shiomitsu Sensei, 9th dan Hanshi said (more than once):

Happy day every day, every day happy day!

Author: arnber

Humongen! The big guy! The man, the myth, the legend! And then theres' me. The nice guy in the house. The man without cooking skills, but with five stars on the Playstation. Boss at work, relaxed at home. What you see is what you get. Life is good. I choose it to be.

2 thoughts on “To make others happy

  1. Excellent piece!

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