Take a Virtual Vacation: Bali 2024

In which Laura leads 14 writers on a restorative, creative journey to explore the healing heart of Bali.


I came to Bali with my friend Nancy Gertz a week before my students were set to arrive. In the course of that week, Nancy and I became friendly with a couple from Holland and the four of us enjoyed meals and conversation. The three of them, in Bali for the first time, were sharing […]

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After Diving

This is me after my final three scuba dives of this trip. I’m still drifting on the currents, swimming with schools of fish, watching octopi and bright blue eels poke out of crevices while the most amazing manta rays swoop and glide around me. I hadn’t gone diving in six years and thought maybe I

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Bali Bliss

My co-leaders and Bali partners Judy and Surya gifted me with this “aromatic flower bath” at Andre Bali Spa in Manggis. The spa sent a car to pick me up at my hotel and drove me about ten minutes up the road. The treatment started with a foot washing. Then I was taken to a

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More Questions, More Curiosity

Today, I had two more dreamy scuba dives. I saw two large sea turtles, schools of fish, and best of all, brightly-colored living coral in many configurations—despite what I expected, not all coral is dead and bleached after all. When you scuba dive, you have to clock in “surface time” between your dives, at least

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Good Morning, Bali!

Thanks to Ativan I slept through my first night in Bali and woke up at 5 this morning, which is pretty close to when I awaken in California. I did my business in the outdoor bathroom, checked around for geckos (nope, haven’t seen any yet), threw on some new light-weight harem pants, a green linen

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Well, I Tried

I really, really, really tried to pack light for my departure to Bali tomorrow. I mean, I have all kinds of excuses. I’m the teacher—I bring special things for my students—beautiful hand-sized notebooks as gifts—so in this case with two groups in a row, that’s 32 little notebooks, giant name tags I hand-wrote on file

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I’m Already Packing for Bali!

When we were discussing travel recently, my writing teacher Carolyn Brigit Flynn said, “Your soul begins the journey weeks before you physically go.” I’m leaving for Bali in less than a week and I’m definitely feeling it! It will be six years since I’ve set foot on Bali. Six years since I heard the tinkling

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