The one word that comes to mind when I reflect on my visit to Bali is “openness.” Bali is on the far side of the world and usually takes 30 hours to reach. It makes traveling to Europe look like a journey to New Jersey.
My plane was canceled from Los Angeles to Hong Kong due to the protests in Hong Kong and I ended up making a 60-hour journey via Beijing that included an unexpected visit to a remote section of the Great Wall of China where I saw only a handful of Chinese visitors. Finally, I made it to Bali.
Until about 1912, only aristocrats and the very wealthy made the journey to what was then the remote and mysterious Bali. A Dr. Krause from Europe published a book of photographs of beautiful Balinese women in 1912 that drew the attention of young men who had survived World War I and soon artists, writers, poets and others found their way to Bali and were both transformed by the culture and transformed the world that they found.
Everyone should be so fortunate as I am to have a brother who is a dear friend and has a spectacular boutique hotel where family can stay for free in Ubud, Bali. Stone House Bali in Ubud is only four years old, but already it has attracted the attention of some of the world’s finest travel magazines.