The Bali Affect

Holidays! What an wonderful privilege to be able to take a holiday, visit somewhere new, maybe somewhere many miles away with a different culture, language and cuisine. Soaking up the differences, taking a break from ‘your’ world. Wonderful for the adult mind, but my goodness how mind blowing for little ones!

 

My wee man and I have been very lucky in his short life to go home to the UK twice and visit family and friends in New Zealand. We’ve taken these trips just us two, leaving the big Mr with our petimals in sunny Melbourne. In May (many months ago now, I know) the three of us went on holiday to Bali with our friends, another family of three. You may be thinking “why are you writing about this now?” – the reason is this trip had a massive and ongoing influence on Chops, and before the arriving of his brother or sister I wanted to record it. Our wee man of 2 and three quarters, not only had his mum and dad but his best buddy to go on a massive adventure.

The trip to the UK was taken in his little 2 year old stride; sprawled out under the kitchen table in the early evening to be close to me and adult chatter, sleeping on trains, visiting friends, glowing in the attention of my family, loving all the big red buses. NZ was tougher, he missed home, missed the big Mr and once home he didn’t talk about it again.

Bali on the other hand has been mentioned at every opportunity. Visitors would be regaled within minutes, sometimes seconds, of entering the house that we had gone to Bali, listing the names of our friends that we holidayed with. Driving in the car he would announce, “dark blue means it’s deep” referring to the pool in the resort. All the small aircraft flying noisily in the sky above us were on the way to Bali. He wanted to know when we were going back. This was not for days after, not weeks, but months – almost on a daily basis. 

We went to visit our friend's new house about four months after our trip, and Chops declared that it was like Bali, leaving us adults scratching our heads. Her home was beautiful with lots of light and lovely art, but it wasn’t very Balinese…. It was the stairs; both of places we stayed in Bali had stairs/steps. Our trip to Bali had stamped itself indelibly on his growing mind, and any and all experiences that could possibly be related to our sunny holiday, were. 

A trip with a toddler wouldn't be without some serious meltdowns, tantrums of epic proportions and other challenging moments. However there were lots of truly lovely moments; the two toddlers wheeling their travel cases behind them through Denpasar airport at 1am looking like the polished little travellers that they are; every square millimetre of their pure skin covered in sand after being treated like rock stars by a group of Korean teenagers on Jimbaran beach; how brave my wee boy was with huge bird, snake, bat on his arm at the turtle sanctuary. 

It might be a little while before we take our growing family off on another adventure, but it is lovely that this trip has been such a long lasting experience for our wee man. When we do head off again (hopefully back the UK) we'll definitely have a squizz at our friend's cool website - Travel with Tots for tips, product reviews and others brave souls experiences of carting their little charges off to far flung places.

Thank you to Kat for her wonderful article, please visit Kat's Blog here

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