July 18, 2018


It’s that time of year again, when the rains have clogged up and damaged major underground drains, in some places also washing away large sections of pavement on Ubud main streets. And a number of significant religious events on our calendar, including the Islamic Ramadan and Idul Fitri, and Hindu Galungan and Kuningan, have meant fewer road workers available for repair work.

Those big calendar items are past now, so hopefully the work teams are in catch up mode! In the meantime, watch your step – and I mean every step – as you walk along Ubud’s roads and sidewalks, such as here on Monkey Forest Street, across from Champlung Sari Hotel.



And then there’s stuck of a different kind … US Psychodrama facilitator Mario Cossa spends his year travelling from country to country, coaching and mentoring counsellors and therapists, using the interactive psychodrama model as this basis for his work.

Mario is a very experienced, sensitive and supportive coach, and as his home base is Ubud when he’s not travelling, he’s available for one-on-one Life Assessment Sessions. Do you know anyone who is experiencing career or life transitions, struggling to alter personal unhealthy behaviours or trying to cope with grief and loss?

The Rosenthal Miniature Psychodrama Stage process – described as “a tiny Family Constellation for one – where you are the puppet master as well as being the star of the show”, is a playful, spontaneous and confidential environment to assess your current position, look at events and people that have shaped you, and think about the choices you might make on your journey into the future. Email: cossa@att.net.



In December, Mario Cossa will hold an intensive three-day workshop exploring the theory, philosophy, and practice of using action techniques such as psychodrama, sociodrama, and drama therapy with adolescent groups.

I don’t have details yet, but it will be one of those “once in a lifetime” programs, so if you work with teens anywhere in Indonesia or abroad, register your interest ASAP by emailing cossa@att.net. Update in mid August’s Ubud News column.



If photography seems to be emerging as a passion in your life, grab the opportunity of two extraordinary photo workshop holidays – dedicated to the art of documentary photography – coming up later in the year.

Led by Ubud-based photographer, David Metcalfe, with Sebastian “Suki” Belaustegui, these Taksu Gallery tours – to Vietnam in September and India in November – will help you delve deeper into your understanding of both portrait and landscape work.

Suki has been described as “one of the best portrait photographers on the planet” and has spent the past 25 years in Latin America and Asia capturing the true soul and spirit of the people. David Metcalfe’s decades of work with indigenous people across the Indonesian archipelago are second to none.

Vietnam Tribal Cultures And Exotic Landscapes, 22 September – 01 October; Odisha Tribal Cultural Photo Workshop, 23 November – 03 December.

More tour info at www.davidmetcalfphotography.com.



Yoga Barn wants to thank everyone who joined in the Community Celebration of International Yoga Day! Despite a day of pouring rain, they raised over 19 million rupiah (about $US1350) for Bali ReGreen, an environmental project working with Mount Agung refugees in dry areas around the volcano.



Jazzy times are here again, with Ubud Village Jazz Festival swinging back to town in August for the sixth year in row. From the very beginning, Ubud’s Bridges Restaurant has supported the festival, holding special lunch and dinner events featuring international artists.

This year, they are hosting a Sunday lunchtime “Jazz Tribute to Abba”, with the clear, warm and flexible voice of talented Dutch jazz singer Judith Nijland and her band.

There’s no cover charge, just book for a drink or lunch on Sunday, August 12. The restaurant is open from 11am to 3pm; Judith will perform in two sets of 45 minutes each, with the concert starting at about 12.30pm. More info about Judith on her website: www.judithnijland.co. Book soon! It’s a minimum consumption of 150,000rp++ per person on food or drink.



Ubud’s own Sound Healing Collective is preparing for their next European Tour (August to October) is shaping up, including Sweden, Switzerland (Belinzona, Lucerne, Steinen), UK (Chelsea, Camden Shoreditch, Birmingham and Primrose Hill), Holland, Spain (Canary Islands), Norway (Oslo) and Germany (Berlin) so far on the schedule.

It’s astonishing to see the success of this group of musicians and healers – Indonesians and international – which has evolved from the first impromptu session here in Ubud just a few years ago. Or is it so astonishing? The world needs healing, individuals need healing; our Ubud has somehow found a very firm place in that healing process, since the first Bali bombing in 2002 forced many of us to place a focus on working together for good.

Tour info: www.soundhealingbali.com/european-tour/



With so many fascinating people either visiting Bali or relocating here from the wellness and healing professions, it’s a wonder that no-one has thought of this before! The Yoga Barn team is offering us “Head Space”, an interactive discussion-based class with visiting guest presenters. Topics will include Yogic Philosophy, Health and Wellness, Ayurveda, Meditation Techniques, Integral Grounding, Self Development, Satsang and more.

Head Space classes take place every day in River Dome from 10.45am to 12 noon; the sessions are donation only, and once again all proceeds will go directly to Bali ReGreen. We are welcome to drop in at any point to check it out. Try Mystic Mondays; Integral Grounding on Tuesday; Mala Making and Activation on Wednesday, (with a materials fee of 500,000rp); Integral Grounding on Thursday; Spirituality of Yoga on Friday, and Saturday Satsang.

Keep an eye on the BaliSpirit and Yoga Barn websites for more fundraisers, activities and non-profit organisations that are working to support the people and animals of Mount Agung, as Bali’s most sacred mountain continues to hurl ash clouds into the air and disrupt the lives of its people.