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Meme means grandmother in Balinese, and that is how I remember her even though she is gone from us.  She was the mother at the ancestral homestead in which I lived for 6 mos. last year.

The last I heard was that she had fallen, broken her elbow and was going in for surgery. Her son-in-law notified me almost immediately.

Her passing brings up the time I spent in Bali.  It was one of deep reflection, of having the time and space to meditate, do qigong, walk and be with a community that treated each other like family. Life is very basic there, one of the oldest villages  РKerambitan Рin Bali that has not changed with time.

Well, that’s not entirely true. Motorbikes abound with even young children zipping along the country road. And, they do have several public internet places – my only connection with the outside world.

It has, however, retained its community life where people not only help each other out, they depend on each other for their survival as well as for their overall well being, something unheard of in the West.

Remembering Meme brings up memories of my time there and with her. Meme was the epitome of a village mother.

When I first met her, I thought she was older than she was. In fact, I was surprised to learn that she was younger than me. I realized then how nutrition can play such an important role in one’s physical and mental development.

She stood not 4’9″, thin to the bone, her small body bent over, and shuffling along slowly so that she would not fall. She would have to sit on the stairs to come down each step. She had chronic diabetes.

Meme had a perpetual frown on her face, showing the scars of living a hard life where finances are scarce. Yet, I have come to know her in quite a different way. Read the rest of this entry »


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