7 years ago I squeezed my life into a 30 L backpack holding nothing but a sketch pad and escaped well…. my life! Or at least, I hoped.
I’m not going to delve into the depths of what I’ve faced, as I feel we all have our own struggles in life what I want to share with you is truth.
Just when I lost hope, in myself, which sadly meant everyone and everything else I fortunately had one little voice left, and my heart led me here.
To Mt Batukaru & a man named Richard
I remember the first evening I was told to make my way to the dining room for dinner. I sat down alone with my sketch book (as it was attached to me like super glue) and ordered my first traditional Balinese meal I was tired and feeling rather dazed.
An older bearded man wearing beautiful embroidered batik and a white head band came down the staircase leading into the hallway before entering the dining room.
He walked towards me and said you must be Stephanie please, enjoy your dinner , you must be tired.
only 10 minutes later we had already discussed our passion for music and art so much so the last ones awake.
The next morning I was blissfully sitting on my porch sketching my work started to become very rigid and heavy in Melbourne but for some reason I had found my flow. 12 hours and I had already found my flow maybe it was the green ? The trees ? The air? … I wasn’t sure but it was back I was alive !!
Richard walked up to me sat down and let out this big smiley sigh …. exhale and inhale exhale he looked at me grabbed my hand and said, we’ve met before.
And for sure we had
The next few years were indeed the most precious.
The reason I speak of this mountain and this man. Is because they saved me. Brought me back to life gave me the support, the courage, the belief and love I was never offered. Richard witnessed me and accepted me at my weakest. I owe my life, my body of work, my spirit to him and I offer these retreats in honor of this great man. RIP great man your songs still echo here.