Bali Ho

The Summer of Love refers to a memorable three month in 1967. The feeling of that season in San Francisco enveloped the youth of America. Woodstock epitomized the Age of Aquarius only to be assassinated by the infamous Rolling Stones at Altamount. Hippies fled the cities. Long hairs traveled the globe to recapture the spirit of the 60s.

Indonesia might have been a dictatorship, however Bali was a paradisaical destination at the end of the Kabul-Kathmandu-Kuta circuit for these pioneer backpackers. The community of transients spread up the coast to form a semi-permanent colony. The beach was beautiful at Seminyak. Lodgings were cheap. Ganga was illegal, but the police were busy drinking beer. Time was measured by the sunrises and sunsets.

My friend Nona lived there then. Her house was bamboo. Her boyfriend was German. Their income came from a silver jewelry business in Sri Lanka selling to Europe. Her sojourn in Bali lasted into the 90s. We re-united at the Strand. I was up in Ubud. My house was a shack in the middle of the rice paddies overlooking the stream in which the villagers bathed in the evening.

Bali was twenty years years away from the Kuta Bombing.

Surf, arts, and the tropics.

I hope somewhere that Bali still exists.

It does in my mind.

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