Bye Bye Beijing, Hello Bali!

That’s right.  I’m currently in Bali.  And, unlike most of my recent travels, this isn’t for a quick two-day visa run.  This is for a semi-lengthy two-month stint.  It’s been one year (almost to the day) since I moved from Jakarta to Phnom Penh.  It’s hard to believe I haven’t stepped foot in Indonesia since then.  And it feels unbelievably good to be back in the country that has become kind of like a second home to me.

I love Bali

I realize that this news might seem like it’s come out of nowhere.  And that’s because it has.  I didn’t plan on this.  In fact, for anyone who read my last blog post, I had very specific plans to spend the summer in Beijing.  In that post I went on and on about how grateful I am for the stability that Beijing has given me, especially after a slightly rocky time in Phnom Penh.  The fact that it’s stability I’m seeking might make it seem a bit odd that I suddenly up and left Beijing.

The Many Sides of Bali…In Photos
Can you blame me for being lured in by Bali?

That being said, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that things in my life don’t always go according to plan.  My life these past few years has consisted of a series of snap travel decisions to different cities and last-minute moves to various countries.  And this visit to Bali is no different.

Two weeks ago I had zero plans to come to Bali.  And then, well, a bunch of random things fell into place.  I won’t go into the long and boring details of how exactly this move (if you can even call it that) came about.  But, in a nutshell, Aaron will be spending the summer doing research in Indonesia, and I’ll be spending the summer working (and trying desperately to keep up with this here blog!).

rice terraces (1 of 1)

So no, I won’t exactly have all the time and freedom in the world to traipse around Indonesia.  But I will have the chance to rent an apartment somewhere in Bali, work from cafes and hotel pools whenever I feel the urge, and spend the weekends traveling to places like Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Penida and the Gilis.

In fact, I’ll be in the Gilis later this week!

Ah, Gili T. How I’ve missed you!

I really do have a lot of work to do.  But hopefully I’ll be able to explore more of the main island, at least a little bit.  I’ve visited Bali three times before, but somehow I’ve explored very little of the main island.

While I’ve been enjoying my time in Beijing, the reality is that I’ve spent the majority of my days working, commuting and feeling just a little isolated in my out-of-town apartment.  So when the opportunity came around for me to spend the summer in Bali, it was just not an opportunity I was going to pass up.

Luckily I’ve been able to find work that enables me to temporarily work remotely.  And for that I feel really lucky.  Sometimes having a job that chains me to my laptop wears on me, but at times like this I love that my work can (for the most part) be done from anywhere.

amanusa hotel (1 of 1)

I’m honestly just so excited to be able to see the ocean every day.  As a California girl, it’s tough not to live next to the ocean.  I’m excited to eat some of my favorite Indonesian treats like gado-gado and bakwan.

gado gado

I’m thrilled to be able to communicate with people again, even if it’s in the most basic Bahasa phrases.  And to be honest, I’m just excited for a change of scenery.  I suppose this is one of the downfalls of having traveled long-term.  It spoils you a little bit, and it makes staying in one place slightly challenging.  So I’m going to spend the summer working my ass off, soaking up the sun and frolicking in the ocean.  But don’t worry Beijing I’ll be back before too long.

So where are you going to be spending the summer?

About Justine

Justine Lopez is a California native who always seems to take the unconventional route in life. She also suffers from a serious case of wanderlust. In 2013, she set out on a yearlong round-the-world journey and never looked back. Since then she's lived the expat life in both Jakarta and Phnom Penh. She's now living and working as a freelance writer in Beijing. As she meanders her way through Asia she's always seeking out great vegetarian food, budget travel deals and amazing new travel destinations.

14 thoughts on “Bye Bye Beijing, Hello Bali!

  1. Cute post. Not surprised at anything you do anymore. Just enjoy your life to the fullest……..pack in all those adventures and keep sharing.

  2. Ha! That is my plan for the summer too – Bali here I come. Do you have any advise on good areas to stay for longer? Preferably with some diving around…

    1. Great minds 😉 Um, I’m not entirely sure where I’m going to set up shop yet. I know a lot of people go to the Gilis and Sanur for diving. But other than that I’m not too sure!

  3. Lovely to hear. Bali is such a great location that I’m not in the least surprised lol!

    Annika, re surfing, Sanur is good for it and quite nice. A little more expensive, but if you shop around you’ll find something to cater for your budget. Don’t go to Kuta to surf though. It’s a horrible place!

    Have fun everyone!
    Victoria@ The British Berliner recently posted…How to be young, bright and absolutely fabulous – showing your stuff at Berlin Fashion Week 2016/2017!

  4. Sounds great! Admire your expat life, I myself have also lived in abroad for a long time but now settled down a bit. My wife and I just did a longer trip around Southeast Asia and definitely got back into travel mode, working hard for a remote working-life. Will be spending the summer here in Berlin and travel around France with a car.
    Enjoy Bali and continue to spread the travel virus out there!
    Julian recently posted…A Perfect Summer Retreat in Walchensee, Bavaria

    1. Thanks Julian! There are ups and downs to expat life but I love that there are always new adventures around every corner. I hear you on wanting to work remotely. I’d like to figure out how to do that long term too. I hope it works out for you!! If you ever have any advice feel free to pass it along 😉

    1. I hope you love Bali as much as I do. It’s a great place 🙂 I’ve written a bunch of posts on Bali, so if you do a search on my site you should find lots of useful info. I’m planning on writing more posts in the very new future, so stay tuned!

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