Indonesian Crystallisation (Written in Bali, 2012) I want to write down for myself where I am and what my thoughts are during this moment, where once again all my world is turning upside down after only a short break. I finished my journey in Asia in the summer of 2010 and returned to Switzerland, where my trip had begun. In these last two years, I reconnected with friends, got married, started to work at a retreat centre, and began to paint with more dedication. Upon return, the idea was to start a smooth and quiet life in a new country together with some friends and my husband, to be a part of team at a growing retreat and meditation centre, to take care of guests and meet many people, to treat clients with my own massage techniques for relaxation of the body, mind, and emotions (Relax 5). I started to paint a lot and sink deeper into myself. Though hardly anything else has worked out, the latter has. Life has again made adjustments to my plans and imagination. And now I am on the road again. It’s my first week in Bali. After almost a year of constantly trying to move my life in a particular direction, all of my bodies are tired. I go to sleep early, wake up, eat breakfast, and then I go back to sleep until lunch. I don’t feel like visiting temples or going out a lot. I just want to have peace and rest. It doesn’t even feel like I’m on holiday. For me, it’s just life in a different place. This gives me time and distance to take another look at the life I have been creating. From here, it doesn’t look smooth at all: my marriage is far from romantic and work at the retreat centre has been mostly about cleaning rather than giving massages. The centre hasn’t been doing well; fewer and fewer guests come, and the friends who committed themselves to it almost never show up. Upon reflection, I can see that some part of my disappointment can be attributed to my imagination and expectations, and some part is because of the unfulfilled promises of others. Again, experience has taught me quite a lot. I find that actually doing things rather than just engaging in blind reflection is the only way to learn. In my recent experiences, I have observed and therefore learned about expectations and agreements. Simply: I wish to have a coffee with you, and you want to have a coffee with me; we agree to meet this afternoon in a café, and our agreement is manifested the moment we meet there. Healthy agreements are based on true intentions. But I find that agreements are often misused as a tool to make us feel good about ourselves. If one man says to another, “If you ever need me, I will be there for you,” it makes him feel good about himself. The other believes it, which also makes him feel good about himself. But secretly, both parties hope that this moment of need never comes, the moment in which one has to ask the other for the support that was promised, because, otherwise, they can both carry on with the illusion of caring and being cared for. I get the impression that people like to think of themselves in a certain way. My friends from Zürich, for example, enjoy making commitments, because it gives them a feeling of being open and integral, trustworthy and high-spirited. But when the moment to act comes, they get cold feet.This goes on not only in agreements and commitments between people but also in the promises people make to themselves. For example, some people say they want to organise their lives to allow for more free time for sport, to play more music, to enjoy their kids, to read, or to meditate. They talk about furthering their education when the time is right. But in so few cases does anyone actually seek out more time or opportunities and take action. People rarely test desires, but when it does come to that, the desires tend to disappear because they were just wishes for the sake of having a wish, and the intention behind them is just to make themselves look good. I wish for honesty, truth, respect, and to be able to trust in my life. Instead I feel puzzled, disappointed, and hurt after my experience in Switzerland. And at the same time though, I feel that I can see more and more, even if I would really like reality to be different. And I can also see that I cannot change others; the only person I can change is myself. So I better do so.