Vikram came to Bali during Bali Spirit Festival to screen his movie ‘Kumare‘ at The Yoga Barn. A brave move on the party of Charley Patton, showing a movie about false guru’s to a crowd of yogis! We hung out awhile in Anomali – my favourite new cafe in Ubud. He’s a cool guy – a breath of fresh air to have an city-living American in town, amidst the yogis, hoopers and dancers ~
Reputedly the busiest woman in town, American-born Meghan Pappenheim, and her husband, Ubud local I Made (Kadek) Gunarta, are long established community leaders and innovators – they are responsible for putting Bali on the map as a yoga hub. But their work and interests don’t end there – much of their energy is poured into Bali ReGreen, a bamboo reforestation project in East Bali. In collaboration with charismatic Arief Rabik, Director of the Environmental Bamboo Foundation, and son of Linda Garland, Bali ReGreen has started with reforesting the desiccated area of Desa Ban. Local residents there still experience extreme poverty and malnutrition since the 1963 eruption of Mount Agung devastated the land. By planting unique, fast-growing, drought-tolerant bamboo, they are creating micro-climate ‘shelter belts’ which protect the land from wind and sun – naturally controlling soil erosion and allowing water back to the area. Funded by Teh Kotak, and Bali Spirit Festival, all Bali ReGreen projects are carried out with full cooperation from the local communities, with the sim hope being of revitalizing the local economy. Their next step is the creation of Sekolah Lapangan Bambu (bamboo field school) to educate locals in sustainable land management.
“Water is life’s matter, matrix, mother, and medium. There is no life without water. Planting bamboo is like building a water reservoir for the top soil of the earth, allowing all who drink from this thin layer of life to thrive!” – Arief Rabik