The first thing I experienced, when I landed in Bali, was the beautiful smell of fresh decorated flowers in the ladies’ bathroom at the airport – the last place where I expected to feel comfortable. It was just the start of a trip to floral beauty I had never imagined and experienced before.
Never ever have I seen and smelt such an abundance, variety and intensity of Frangipani, Hibiscus, Bougainvilleas and other tropical flowers. However, what touched me most, was the dedication of the Balinese decorating everything from doorsteps to buddhas and even motorbikes with offerings to the Gods or little bowls with the flowers’ petals.
The offerings, called “canang sari”, are little hand made baskets with flowers, candy, sticky rice and sometimes even some eggs – prepared freshly up to three times a day. Not to because people are afraid of the Gods anger, but because they want to give back, what has been given to them. A sharing, based on the gratitude for the richness of life.
When I saw people preparing the offerings, it did not seem to be a stupid duty they had to do. They did it with the fullest love and care and a gentle inner smile on their face. It was a perfect example to me for gratitude and appreciation of the current moment. Even if the flowers will turn old within a couple of hours in the heat, putting them there NOW made this moment extremely beautiful.
A couple of days later, I saw a carving in the streets, which seemed to be a headline to this experience and it was eye opening to me. It said: “Sweet present of the present”. I have never been aware, that in English, the words “gift” and “now” are united in the word “present”.
The present is a present in the sense, that it is the only thing, we can influence directly – moment after moment.