Friendsgiving

November 24, 2013

This is my face when I think about my family and friends back at home. I really miss you guys and I’m so thankful for each of you. Time for beers on the beach. “It’s like that”. Happy Friendsgiving everybody. Gotta love the Sunday before Thanksgiving!

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Ubud, Bali

November 20, 2013

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. Beautiful place. But I didn’t see Julia… WHERE’S JULIA?!? In all seriousness, it’s quite a spiritual place. Incense burning in front of each doorstep, colorful prayer flags everywhere, ancient statues throughout, pagodas towering ahead, monkeys running amok and some straight up amazing new friends. However, onward to the chaotic Kuta. Since in some months time I’ll be moving to Australia, I may as well get used to the Aussie madness now. Let’s hope this rain clears up. It’s the rainy season Indonesia but that isn’t stopping us.

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Malang Instameet

November 17, 2013

Leavin Malang, Indonesia heading to Bali. I left a day late because I missed my bus but couldn’t be happier that I missed the bus because today my @Instagram friends had a “InstaMeet” with the community with challenges and guest models. Everyone gathered in the name of photography taking photos and just sharing constant laughs. We had a sponsor, a telephone company, who provided water and gave me a T-Shirt. They called me their guest of honor, the random American in the group. It was a humbling experience. Everyone took turns taking a personal photo with me, it was quite awesome! Almost everything I did was followed by a laugh or a smile. One of the best things about language barriers is that words are exchanged with body language, motions and laughter. They all were SO kind and nice to me, it felt like I was at home. Unfortunately, my time in Malang has come to an end. It is filled with great memories and new found friends. Indonesia is turning out to be such a great place. Now we will continue to stay in touch through Instagram. This is the turn out for the event below. They all insisted I stand in the middle, just another sign of their kind heartedness. I also had my first Portrait Photography shoot and posted a photo a little earlier. There are so many to choose from it was difficult. Anyways, I’m Bali Bound! I am on a bus and only 11 more hours to go! My friends got me the local price too, only $8.00 for quite a long distance (Ferry Included!). Adios Amigos.

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Portrait Photography

November 17, 2013

Today I had my first Portrait Photography shoot. I can’t believe my eyes with the results. There are so many photos it’s hard to choose just one to post. After I get caught up with posting my previous shots I will be sure to upload them all! I had so much fun!

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Remembring Oli at Mount Bromo

November 16, 2013

Two years ago I downloaded a little program named @Instagram that opened up a whole new avenue in my life. I found photography was a hidden, newly discovered passion just waiting to get unleashed. I began interacting with people all over the world and formed friendships with people I’ve never met. Some days, I couldn’t wait until I had time to hit “Refresh” on the program and see what was happening with my friends around the world. Many times on this trip I was finally able to put a face to the name of people I’ve interacted with for years. This last stop in Malang was no different. Arga, Haris and Leo are three people part of my group, or as we say “family” on Instagram. I’ve known them for over a year but never heard their voice nor met them in person. When they heard I was in Java, Indonesia, they were quick to not only want to meet up, but quick to invite me into their home to stay while in Malang, Indonesia. Therefore, the past three days I have been staying with them and their parents at their home. I have gone from home to home as each are so eager to host me. I have ate authentic Indonesian food and met their extensive family who are so kind and eager to meet this “Bule” (Westerner) in their country. They have taken me on some EPIC adventures zipping at high speeds through traffic on motorbike to get to remote destinations to take photos. One day was a two hour ride to the beach and the following was a expedition to Mount Bromo, an active volcano in East Java. These guys are talented. The things they can create with their DSLR Cameras is astonishing. I have had such a great time speaking about photography all day long. I have learned so much about even my own camera and things I didn’t realize it could do. I thought since I don’t have a DSLR I couldn’t do certain things but they proved me wrong. It’s been so much fun. This is the first time I have been able to spend days with someone who also enjoys my passion as back home I don’t know anyone else obsessed like myself. Back at home I was actually somewhat shy about my photography interests since it wasn’t common around my social circle. I felt like a nerd. One thing I have learned this trip is life is to fucking short to spend time with insecurities. Anything you are insecure about, whether it’s hobbies, your laugh, your weight or your past.. Time is wasted being insecure about them. They are part of you and it’s best to just embrace ALL of them and love them because they are a part of you and everyone is perfect in their own way. Obviously what I speak of trickles down to other things than just photography but it was a nice segue.. Yesterday standing at the top of Mount Bromo, looking into the volcano, smelling the sulfur and hearing it roar was a powerful experience for me. The earth is so powerful and right in front of me is a giant hole into the great abyss. I was told it is also considered a sacred mountain amongst the Hindus. The energy on this place was captivating. While I was standing there I couldn’t help but think of our friend Oliver, who we all lost earlier this year. It’s been a difficult year for everyone. As I stood there, I felt his presence. I could hear his laugh, see his smile and hear his voice. My body tingled and I just felt him there with me. It started at my feet and worked its way to my head. I truly believe he was there. The feeling overcame me I couldn’t control my emotions. It was so overwhelming. So special. So pure. Therefore, I did what I always say I would never do. I picked up a rock and carved OCP, Oliver’s initials, in the paint at the top of Bromo. The rain will surely wash it away but for now it leaves his mark. After I was done with the rock I came across a particular dilemma. Do I keep the rock used for carving or do I throw it into the volcano? Half of me wanted to keep it, hold on to it and never let go. I wanted its physical presence to remember this moment. However, at the end I kissed the rock, told him how much WE all loved him.. and chucked the rock into the smokey abyss. Sometimes letting go is the hardest part.

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Troubles in Jakarta

November 10, 2013

Soooo my Couchsurfing host decided to go on a little shopping spree while I was at the market today before I left. Over $1,500 in charges spread out over three cards.. and his phone is already disconnected. Now this is a new challenge! Gonna stay positive. My next Couchsurfing host is already in the works on trying to help me out. (Yes, I will still continue to Couchsurf. I’m not letting him ruin this).

Six months on the road you’re bound to run into a few assholes. Just focusing on all the great people I’ve met so far. It’ll be all good once I work it out with the banks, which is always a great task overseas.