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Luck fell upon us with no rain forecast, all weekend the sun shone as the clouds rolled on past.
The whole site top to bottom is an absolute trek, 40 minutes atleast - thats ignoring the rest. (On Saturday we wandered 28 kilometres)
Before the first day my voice was all gone - The Healing Fields happened to be where we're drawn.
But Alas - we were stuck at a fork in the road. Holistic First Aid, Homeopathy or Apothecary for my throat? More choices than I would find back home in the Bay, but we made the right choice, by donation we paid 😉
Here we found ourselves lost among workshops - wood workings, silversmithing, staff making, felt crafting. Yoga, Osteopathy, Massage, Meditation, Little Bands, Parades, Jam Sessions, weaving, sewing, painting!
Overwhelmed and hungry we look for some grub. Astounded that everything was dangerously lush. Vegan Mexican, Organic juice, Smoothies, Soups stalls ...
and Sushi and Samoas! Wait, this is out of control! Hare Krishna buffets and Nourishing Bowls? Fallafels, Elixir Bars ! .... I think now you know.
From the healing space to the drum and bass... there is something for everyone.
and Ive never seen so much Glitter before - beards, moustaches, boobs, butts and more.
With a line up so vast there was too much to see. Anderson Park, Henrick Schwarz and Josh Caffe were my favourite three.
Rolling hills decorated with Tipis, Tipis hand painted. So detailed and bold.
Through small woven archways in suspicious bushes we peered in, curiously encountering mirrored forests, tea parties, tiki bars, comedy shows....wonderland.
Flowers, Towers, delicious foods... interesting dance moves...
P.s it was ever so Wonderful to see, an outstanding presence of many charities! Huge areas of the grounds occupied by leading NGO's; Green Peace, Water Aid and Oxfam provided stalls, tents, recycling stations, interactive experiences, op-shops and even composting urinals.
Slightly (purposely) lost, with our heads in the clouds, we find ourselves at the Love Temple now.
We made a good friend, A local Glastonbury fella. His name was Eternal, He could eat chocolate forever.
Cacao balls and Brownies, even Coca Leaf tea! Maca, Ashwaganda surprises to thee.
I Really must say, They had it all! How much energy can you fit in one little Bliss Ball!?
I can't even count on two hands and both feet, how many stages there were to go see. They were small, big , humongous, unimaginably tall, But the one shooting fire was the best of them all
Off-site on a hill, from our camp we could hear, By far the most impressive stage of the year. Built from Old War machines, recycled and reformed. Arcadia Spectacular was a spectacle for sure.
Nightfalls and Down to the South-West corner we suppose, by midnight its always too packed to get close. Every grimy city nightlife all mashed into one. Block 9 is like nothing that had ever been done. Amongst the Immense abandoned concrete jungle, built up around us as the crowd sway and stumble. Hidden inside the bass-heavy oven. Mimicking the underground - Berlin - New York - London.
We found some moustaches (don't ask) and waltzed straight on in - to a Vortex, of Dancing, Drag, Sequins and Sin.
5 hours later on a hill very tall - we watched sun rise and that was practically all.
B A L I
It does seem every time i return to Bali, whether it be 6 months or 1 year later, the little island paradise is developing and changing on an exponential curve with no means of putting on the breaks. I always duck in and out as its a lovely reset and accessible break for me, just 5 hours from Sydney. I love to visit my friends who reside there - however all central and westernised. I’m yet to leave the mainland and travel north or south to rural areas and really be immersed in Indonesian culture …so until then what i can share is a little guide around the places i do know - the wonderfully wholesome cafes, healing treatments, whimsical rice fields, and some of the best yoga classes i can say I've ever taken - and even ways you can help the community.
What i have realised recently is, You don't have to single handedly save the world - as long as you make a conscious effort and do what you can. Natascha and i made a little rule to pick up 3 pieces of rubbish when ever we left
Here are some little things you can do to help the community :
- Eat at local warungs or grocers owned by locals - Oma Jamu for example (i talk about this later on in this post in Munchies with Mimi. So KEEP READING!
- Stay at Home Stays when you can - they are usually locally owned.
- Pick up 3 pieces of rubbish whenever you can.
- Avoid using soaps provided by hotels.
- Request to not have your towels replaced daily.
- Bring your own Water Bottle! this way you can avoid buying plastic bottles.
- Avoid using plastic straws.
- Try to dine in to avoid takeaway packaging.
- Carry a tote bag with you - don't accept plastic bags.
- Take advantage of the recycling bags now provided in most Accomodations and use them properly.
Natascha and I Volunteered at BAWA – Bali Animal Welfare Association – and got to witness a day in the life of the wonderful Souls who work there every day helping with BAWA’s amazingly inspiring rescue and rehabilitation work. It’s heart-warming, but some of the cases are simply heart-breaking too.
BAWA is truly the saviour and only hope for so many animals in desperate need here in Bali. If you wish to donate to Lend a hand and make a small or big difference at BAWA, helping the Animals with their recovery and rehoming- please head to http://bawabali.com/donate-to-bawa/
BAWA also Operates the island’s only free animal ambulance which is currently in need of replacement. If you want to help with this, have a look at: https://igg.me/at/1J-I2g0QFME
On a more serious note - Please head to their website and have a read up in their campaign section about the Slaughtering and Dog Meat Trade Issues.
I usually spend a decent stint in ubud but not this time- After volunteering at BAWA all day unfortunately we ran out of time to visit the Green School - If you get the change i strongly suggest you head up to Ubud and take a tour at Green school - a completely eco and self sustaining School for Local children where they're doing so many incredible things to give back to the community. Teaching the locals and their children to help them better understand how to care for their land in a consumerist culture. Bambu Indah is a beautiful eco resort where you can wine and dine (it was the most amazing meal plant based i ever had, papaya steak is BOMB!)
Also if your into yoga be sure to attend one of the many classes available at YOGA BARN . You can join anything from basic to advanced level yoga, mediation, sound healing, dance meditation and more. Ontop of that they have a delicious cafe/restaurant serving fresh juice and nourishing food all day long.
If your after a massage or a gut healing, try Ida's Body Work - and see KUTUT!
MUNCHIES WITH MIMI IN BALI
One of the best things about visiting Bali is the abundance of insanely healthy, mixture traditional and western food. You’ll find anything and everything, from little Local Grocers to Australian owned Vegan Cafes - your sure to find something to satisfy your tastebuds where ever you are. Aside from the wonderful Dining experiences don't forget to support the locals and grab your Fresh Tropical Fruit and Coconuts from local markets or road stalls! Heres something you didn't know - I’m not Vegan at all! But i do truly appreciate the creativity behind vegan cooking, and understand the ethical beliefs - and so a lot of my Bali Ventures are spent exploring the unique Vegetarian and Vegan alternatives to the cheeses, milks, meat and eggs we so often eat at home. In this little Pocket of Paradise i feel Inspired to cook creatively! So, Heres a little, itty-bitty insight into some of my Favourite places in Bali, but Trust me, the list goes on! So stay tuned for more.
Whether you are un Canggu, Ubud or the Bukit you will find yourself within arms reach of my most favourite morning hang out, cafe, restaurant and grocer - Bali Buda. I flick through the pages of their News Paper-Sized menu, Traditional indo meals are mixed with French, American and Italian style breakfasts, lunches and dinners. You can treat yourself to a “Healthy Drink” from their menu… or you could choose form the “Super Healthy Drink” section, the choice is yours !
I stopped one morning for breakfast and found myself inducing in a Balinese Morning Glory - made from chunks of steamed Purple Sweet Potato, Dates, Goji Berries and Chopped Banana swimming in a sea of Delicious Warm Coconut Mylk.
Another one of my favourite dishes is there MacroBiotic Plate - a nourishing conception of Tofu, Brocolli, Chickpeas, Daikon, Seaweed, Sesame, Brown rice and Miso.
The Takeaway is fabulous too - i often order the Live food platter - sliced Jicama (A Local Vegetable kind of like a Potato and an Apple combined) Tomato, Cucumber, Their Famous Sprouted Seed Pizza Crackers and Raw Dips.
Behind secret temple doors a vegan oasis awaits… with a wide variety of vibes, whatever the occasion - cozy cushioned areas for snuggling sipping “Hot Lava” (Raw Cacao, Cashew Mylk and Chilli) Tree House tables and chairs and fabulous wifi for working hard travelling throw this emails. Down stairs dining area open kitchen / restaurant vibe … and an abundance of plants!
Best of All There is Snack store downstairs for on the go Healthy Mucnhies!
You can never gowrong with a DIY Salad Bar and Vegan Parfait Breakfast Bar…. “Alkalize, Rehydrate and Transform” your insides. Alchemy Raw Vegan Cafe and Juice Bar is always my first stop in ubud.
Located: Jl. Penestanan, Ubud
Having not been to Bali for a while, i wasn't up to date with the Hang Out Spots.…. I heard from far and wide that Shady Shack was the best place top eat in Canggu, so my expectations were set high - and i was impressed! Breakfast was delicous— chocolate mud smoothie.. yes please. i cant say i was impressed with the coffee but
a few nights later we went back for Dinner and tested upon of an assortment of Exotic salads, Mushroom and vegan sweet potato gnocchi … which was to die for.
Owned by fellow Australians, Betelnut Is My favourite spot for a Jamu shot and a coconut mylk latte - deliciouso! You can find Jamu all over the place in Bali - it is usually made from a mixture of Tumeric, Tamarind, Cinnamon and Ginger and Lime with Honey to Sweeten. Jamu’ has been used for years and years as a natural remedy to improve liver detoxification, reduce inflammation, improve immunity and fight off bacteria.
THE CASHEW TREE
The islands Best Rice Paper Rolls - free from flavourless space-wasting glass noodles - full of veggies and accompanied by a delicious tahini sauce instead of peanut! Not that i don't love notoriously sweet peanut sauce, but its a nice little change…
Located: Jalan Pantai, Bingin
If you want to support a local Indonesian family grocer but still want the high quality local produce or youre simply craving a slice of Tumeric-Marinated tofu - Oma Jamu is the place for you!
This humble store doubles as a grocer with fresh veggies, ice cold coconut water, Jamu Juice , Kombucha, seed crackers and a very cute hand packaged selection of nuts and dried fruit.
Located: Jl Batu Bolong, Canggu, just past Deus
And finally for Something to Suck On…
if your after a quick refresher I've just discovered Mad Pops! Super duper simple local and seasonal ingredients, all natural, Vegan, gluten free, all that jazz… but most importantly - theyre freakin delicious! they're basically a frozen chia pudding 😉 here we have a small selection of the many flavours that include Vegan Key Lime Pie, Banana- chocolate, Blueberry-Coconut, Pineapple-Vanilla-Ginger-Coconut (my fave), Coffee Vegan Chocolate Crunch, Chia-Lemon zest-Coconut… and the list goes on, Totally Unreal!
M B F W A
Much to my excitement the giant game of dress-ups was upon us.
I had a wonderful and eventful week running around supporting local brands. To name a few of the events that unfolded - Ainsley Hansen (Hansen and Gretel) and Chloe Dunlop (She Made Me), close friends of mine had their first fashion shows. My gorgeous girl Roberta was deemed Queen of fashion week - walking in an astonishing 13 shows. I was lucky enough to see some of my favourite brands shows - the more theatrical ones, like Romance was Born. Shows with amazing styling like Double Rainbow or designs with gorgeous prints like Hansen and Gretel. Shows with incredible casting - and ofcourse the feathers, fluff, sequins, glitter and jewels of Alice Mccall, sass and bide and Dyspnea.
above: Dion Lee
above: Hansen and Gretel
above: Sass and Bide
Hair done by Darren Summors from Aveda
above: Bec and Bridge
I was lucky to have the gorgeous Jana Bartolo helping me with Styling throughout the week. After working on a few shoots with Jana and always watching her work, i saw her style was the epitome of what my imagination could conjure up for something like Fashion week, a Creative and Quirky melding pot of Street Wear, Australian Brands, Couture, Designer Labels and Fun socks. I learn a lot from working with stylists like Jana, we have a similar eye when it comes to clothing and brands - yet she knows how to tie something really out-there back with simple, gorgeous and effective accessories. I've learnt thats what really pulls together a “look” so Big Thankyou Jana for inspiring me and through example, teaching me some valuable things about creative styling.
below: She Made Me
above: Ginger & Smart
feeling very "BladeRunner"
@georgiafowler and big sis!
above: Dyspnea Show, on a Boat. The more fun and freeing event all week.
ft. mainly my doll @milliesavage
below: Romance Was Born
ME styled by Jana Bartolo.
Ever since I was a tiny little toddler I pranced around in fairy dresses and wanted nothing more than to dance all day. My loving mother and father helped me fulfill my big little dream by sending me off to Ballet Class. As the years went on my passion progressed untill I swore I spent more time at ballet than school, every afternoon, rehearsals all day Saturday, and competitions on the weekends.
On special occasions we were taken To the Australian Ballet at the Opera house with our teachers. By age 13, all I wanted to do was be a ballerina! A few years later, in my prime I would say - I was accepted into Joffrey Ballet school in NYC, but deferred in order to complete my schooling at Reddam House - where I had received a Performing Arts Scholarship for Dance. This meant I had the opportunity to select Dance as a subject and spend 2-3 hours each day at high school doing what I really loved, and of course learning all the Theory and History behind it too!! Then as years went by Modelling picked up, I started to dance less often and my dream of being a ballerina drifted off towards the horizon, but still lingered....
Never-ever did I ever imagine I would take a class with the Australian Ballet. Let alone have the opportunity to experience what its like Behind the curtains of the big productions! Backstage, costumes, sets and props, the dressing rooms, and all the hard work that goes into putting on a Ballet, particularly - The Nutcracker, Story of Clara at The Opera House
Early in the morning i was met by the beautiful Jasmin Durham and her friends - Coco Matheison and Jess Woods, gorgeous dancers with the Australian Ballet. Jess took me under their wing and showed me some interesting things backstage! Crates full of point shoes and tutus, wardrobe rooms collaged into a Kylie Minogue homage, Pilates rooms, gorgeously beaded gowns and more.
The finale was watching the performance - the dancers were incredible, the dresses, tutus and costumes were vivid and glittering - beautiful as ever. The story was surprisingly comical - Graeme Murphys Nutcracker takes place in Melbourne in the 50s, and follows an elderly Clara as she Dreams of her past as a Russian Ballerina, dancing the Nutcracker! A wonderfully engaging contemporary take on an otherwise tame and traditional ballet.
I want to extend a big thank you to Jasmin Durham and Joanna O'Connor for keeping my childhood dream alive !
Twice the fun! Finally my Dear Friend (punn intended) Jono Friend, came along to the US for his first visit! Joining our NYC family on many ventures - nocturnal expeditions in particular.
I have only seen it snow once before - this time last year in New York. I have to say, i was so sick of the unbearable heat in Sydney, that -4’ C felt like a treat. The day after I arrived there was news of a snow storm. Everyone was out and about with their variations of side-walk-salters, optimistically sprinkling sodium pebbles, rocks and powder hoping it will melt away at the predicted 2 foot of snow and they might still have some resemblance of sidewalk outside their store tomorrow.
I woke up warm under my covers with the icy whirlwind of snow radiating through the window by my bed. The snow spiralled and spun - dancing amidst strong gusts of wind beyond the glass. I spent the Snow Day with my friend Ryan Ulsh - Outside, in the elements all day. I thought, What better to do than drive around and take pictures and make a film in the snow? (lucky Manhattan roads are ploughed)
I love to let loose and feel complete freedom when mother nature is in a powerful state - i may have danced in the snow storm with next to nothing on. I found it amazing how i could just dance and dance, and become engulfed completely in my movement. Following the gusts of wind and snow flakes. I was completely numb to the temperature, it was such a liberating experience - cant wait to show you.
We went everywhere that day. East Village to West, Soho to Central Park. We walked the Brooklyn bridge and even accidentally ended up in New Jersey. Thankyou Ryan for making my Second ever Snow Day so fun. All photos of me throughout this post are taken by Ryan Ulsh. More to come!
It was Fashion Week after all, so a few days into it, being here, there, everywhere, show to show, presentation to event. Openings and closings and all that jazz …. I wound up exactly where i wanted to be - Johan and Marteen played Dj set at Never Never - busting out the bangers, St Germain to Archie Hamilton and more. I had a hoot dancing and getting groovy, it was refreshing to hear somewhat of a “World Music” set in a club that usually only plays top 40 or that weird rap/house/trap all-in-one genre that seems to be a new phenomenon. So, Well done boys - Well played Team.
F is For...
Many things - as we now know, Friends, Fashion, Freezing, Fight, Flight, Fierce and of course Fendi. With invite in hand we made our way as 7 to the Fendi/Boilerroom event at New York Fashion Week. We heard it would be big, and with the likes of 21 Savage, Jaime Jones (i know - again?!) Amigos, Peggy Gou and more playing... but we didn't know we would have to literally fight our way to the door, squeezing through hundreds of people.
F is for Fight, Georgia, Jono and i decided we would give it a shot and wiggled (pushed) our way through the fiercely dressed and sassy-faced crowd, hanging on tightly as if it were life or death we made it, broke free of the crowd and were on out way up... Sadly the other 5 decided F was for Flight disappeared during the decision making process...
We found ourselves amidst what i would compare to a crowd as innovative, and individual in fashion as in images I've seen from Afro Punk Festival... i was Wowed. I was also impressed by the unusual dancers and "Bone Breakers".