Mangku Magic

If you’ve seen the movie Eat Pray Love, then you’ll no doubt be familiar with Julia Robert’s spiritual advisor or Mangku (Hindu Priest), Ketut, from whom she seeks spiritual guidance. I too, sought out my own Mangku (I Made Winaya), and had my own experience.

The first thing that struck me about him, was how much he resembled my grandfather, who passed away over 10 years ago. Same body shape and manner, only instead of looking like a barrely little German man, he looked more like Colonel Sanders but with a much longer beard.

He didn’t tell me my future so much, but assured me everything will be fine and that I should maybe meditate a little more, just a few minutes every day, to reconnect me with “whomever or whatever may/may not be out there”. As he put it…

“Nobody knows if God exists, but…maybe?” 🙂

I’m not sure I’m convinced. But he did say he liked me very much, because I have a quiet face. Clearly, he hasn’t heard my mouth. And I don’t mean that in a bad way. I’m not really one for offensive language, but I do tend to talk a lot…about…stuff. Mostly…weird, but hey, what else would you expect from the mind of a genius?

He also pretty much insisted that I bring Fiona to meet him and he will bless her stomach for good luck with the baby, so we’ll probably schedule that in, once she’s back.

All in all, it was quite an interesting encounter. I was a little disappointed he didn’t have a long staff and float on a pink cloud, but then, I may have confused a Mangku, with Monkey Magic. The nature of either one is still…irrepressible!


Well, the news is out there!

I am so totally overwhelmed by all the love and best wishes we have received. This baby sure will be born into a world of love. At this stage I am still in disbelief, I am not sure I’ll believe it until this little miracle actually arrives 🙂

In 7 days I will be on the plane on my way back to Bali. Back to the sunshine, good food and my love.

7 More Things to Do at Dinner Alone…

…So you don’t look like a loser.

1. Learn a new language, like…morse code or semaphore.

2. Pretend to be blind.

3. Address everyone you speak to as Malcolm. “Thank you, Malcolm”, “Good Evening, Malcolm”. “Malcolm, how are you?”

4. Fake…Tourette syndrome.

5. Build a fort from as many tablecloths and empty chairs that you can find.

6. Leave your ID and wallet at home. (A great crowd pleaser).

7. Tell everyone you’re an expectant father!

(NB: Please note that performing some or all of these things, may not actually work. No matter what you do, eating alone in a restaurant, you will always look like a loser. Except for the last one, maybe) – JPB


Familiar Faces Old & New

Any chance to upgrade from a “dining-for-one” experience, is a welcome opportunity in Bali.  And it’s always great to catch up with a familiar face, and even meet new ones.  This morning I met up with Sally McAuliffe (our lovely photographer friend we met during the Ubud Writers Festival), and her equally lovely husband, Tom, who in terms of “top blokes I’ve met around the world”…goes…“straight, to the pool room”.

We met for breakfast at Biku, and caught up on all our adventures and discussed the latest movies. Although, Sally and Tom live near the beach in Timor, and only have electricity at night, so they haven’t really seen anything beyond 1997!!

But we did have a great chat about Eckhart Tolle, author of such books as The Power Of NOW, Practicing The Power of NOW and A New Earth. Come to think of it, I have a great title for another book in the series, It’s NOW or Never. And if you’re familiar with the concepts, then that title is pretty apt 🙂

“Ahh, I love the smell of philosophy in the morning.”

(Dibs on that title myself, if Eckhart doesn’t use it).

All-in-all it was great to meet and catch up, and hopefully our paths will cross again someday in the future…ah, I meanNOW?