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I walk down streets past the locals in Ubud, Bali and they look at me trying to figure out who I am. When we engage in conversation, the first questions is “where you from?” The next...“you here because Eat, Pray, Love?”

 
I laugh because in some ways I am. I’m out there on my own journey similar to Liz Gilbert. Am I HERE because of the book and movie? No? Would I like to have some of those similar situations happen for me? Hell yes!
 
The best "short version" of the movie...set to the song Eddie Vedder included in the soundtrack...watch it just to refresh your memory 🙂

Think about it: traveling to foreign countries, meeting new wonderful friends, coming to peace with certain aspects of your life, opening the door to new possibilities. Who wouldn’t want to do that?!? Oh, that’s right, I AM!!!
 
As I was walking with friends we had the "Eat, Pray, Love" (EPL) conversation. They happen to know both of the supporting characters of the book – Ketut Liyer and Wayan – and we just happened to be walking past Wayan’s shop.
 
I don’t know if the release of the book and movie have had the same effects on the people and places of Italy (eat) and India (pray), but I can tell you that I see women here on a daily basis that are here because of the love portion. Here looking for the answers from Ketut and the magical potions from Wayan.
 


A few of these "Eat Pray Love" locations are easy to miss if you don’t look closely enough.

Wayan's Traditional Balinese Medicine Shop


Wayan’s shop is one of the easiest to find. You turn off the main road of Ubud onto Jalan Jembawan. You will walk past the post office and notice Wayan’s shop squeezed into the shops on the left side of the road. If you get to Radiantly Alive, you have JUST walked past it. Look for the sign that says “Traditional Balinese Medicine.”
 
Stop in for a visit. Just remember that she practices the traditional medicines of the Balinese. You will not get the magic pill. But, I can tell you from my time here that the traditional remedies do work (drinking turmeric for my achy fingers worked wonders...it took me a week to realize so).
 
Read the reviews from past experiences to find out about other's experiences>>>
 

Monkey Forest

 
Then continue along to Monkey Forest. Go past the lady trying to sell you “official Monkey Forest bananas,” you truly don’t need those. The overpopulated forest is brimming with frolicking monkeys. It will take no effort on your part to get great pictures of them!
 
Walk along the main path and turn right at the first path. You will walk down the steps, across the bridge and end up at the biggest banyan tree and temple.

This is one of the Julia riding a bicycle spots. Funny when you look at it because in the movie it looks as though she is off to somewhere. If she really would have kept riding, she would have ended up in the river!

A factoid about Julia’s bike that she rode in the movie: a casting call was held in Ubud to find the perfect bike. The morning of, there were 300 bicycles for her to choose from.
 
Those placing bets on which one she would choose did not expect it to be the one that she did!

The Ubud Market


The Ubud Market that I photographed is no longer there! They knocked it down the Summer of 2012! It has now been rebuilt to be more trendy and tourist-friendly at the front door and the traditional market at the back door.
 
You really, truly can't miss this one. There are rows of scooters and a few buses in front. It is on the left before you reach the Palace.
 
That is where Julia and Javier were wandering the morning of her hangover when he offered to be her tour guide. It is a crowded place and everyone will want to sell you something. Dive in and get some pictures!
 
The best time for picture taking at the Ubud Market is 5 a.m. The crowds are not there and the ladies are selling produce. The lighting is dim so be prepared with flash or tripod.
 

The next couple of locations require getting in a car.

The Famous Ketut


Ketut Liyer’s home is a drive. Get one of the local drivers to take you, get your number, sit in line and be prepared for a long wait.
 
Read articles from other’s experiences so that you know what to expect. This one summed up what I had read in others>>>
 
He also has a YouTube video.
 
I think the experience alone would be worth it, but don't expect your reading to be individualized. I have my own spiritual priest and medicine man here who take care of me, but I’m not giving up their names to the whole world. I don’t want them going Hollywood on me!

Ceking Tegalalang Rice Terraces


 
One of my favorite locations, and a great break from the crowds of Ubud, is the drive out to the rice terraces. You really can’t take a bad picture here!
 
I would suggest walking down into the terraces and having a coconut. The couple who has the little shack down by the stream are the sweetest. He took off while I was sitting there resting and drinking to go pick some more. If you look closely at the trees, you will see the foot notches carved out. That little old man can make it up to the top of tree lickety-split! Don't think you could ask for a fresher coconut than that!

My take on Chasing the Eat, Pray, Love Dream in Bali
 


Come to Bali to experience your own journey. Don't think that the same thing that happened to and for Liz will happen to you. While Eat, Pray, Love is inspiring no one is going to live out the same exact story. If it moves you out of your comfort zone to try something new, more power to it!
 
To dispel the myths (my apologizes to the dreamers out there) I have not noticed any “Javiers” in my daily walks around Ubud. While the largest concentration of expats do reside in Ubud, the single, gorgeous, rich, happy, ready-to-fall-in-love men are not standing there with a big arrow pointing towards them. Trust me, I would love to have a Bali boyfriend, but I want one for the long haul, not a one-nighter! "Kuta Cowboys" are a dime a dozen here for those of you who do want that experience...

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copyright 2011-2017 Loxley Browne

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