The students I’ve met

Why is it that when it’s almost time to leave, things start to feel positive and you want to stay or keep doing what you’re doing for longer? 2 weeks ago I was feeling like I was overstaying in Bali. I wasn’t having much of a connection with other students in school and things just felt kind of… plain. I was missing excitement, a social life, and just having fun in general. In a way it’s kind of still the same, but this week I’ve enjoyed being with the staff and students more. Funny how things grow on you; it just sucks for impatient people like me who rather not wait it out and go through a ‘dip’ period before things look up. But that’s life eh?

Aside from the Jap students, the new students lately have been Nicole from US, Carla from Portugal, and Raffael from Belgium. They’ve been lovely to chat to and I’ve enjoyed being able to share my thoughts and interested with them and vice versa. It’s interesting getting to know the types of  personalities the spa industry attracts. Each person is so different but we all have a frame of mind that connects on some level. Raffael is 40+ years old and he’s a Patent Examiner in Belgium. How niche is that job?! As a personal interest he wants to learn everything about Balinese massage and has been trying to find his personal style of massage for the past few years. Carla on the other hand seems like an outgoing, adventurous, travelling mum who will try new things til the day she dies. She quit her job in banking to explore this new career path. It inspires me to know there are people out there her age still trying new career paths. And Nicole is my age. She’s been travelling all over asia with her bf for the past 2 years and doing the course is her way of being involved with the Balinese community. We have common ground with the travelling/backpacking stint so that’s been nice.

I can’t forget Rubi who I met in my first week though! She’s a Spa Manager in the Philippines, I’d say she’s in her early 30s, and she still wants to go backpacking? Man, the number of career changes I suspect I’ll have.. I don’t think I’ll ever settle. I only got to see her for two days but we clicked and I’m sad our friendship didn’t get a change to bloom. Oh there’s also Saori, she’s 28 from Japan but she looks younger. I like her style of clothes. We haven’t conversed much because of the language barrier but we have short chit chat now and then and she’s been at Jamu for the past two months too. So she’s my long-term student buddy 🙂 . I  miss Asep too. He’s back in Dubai now, continuing his job as a masseur at a hotel. He has a 2 year contract there and who knows where he’ll go after! He was my classroom buddy for just a week, and was easy to talk to. It’s so nice having a male friend too. There’s too many females in this industry!!

I’ve meet several other students too including Obethe acupuncturist from Canada, Elyse the aromatherapy chick from CalifORnia, Olena from Ukraine (that’s a whole other story haha), Claire and Juliett from France, and a lady from Brisbane (she was the only other Australian student I’ve met). Rewind 7 weeks, my class buddy was Viti – a young guy who has been massaging for 6 years so he was pretty experienced but was revising the anatomy & physio course. It was nice to have a buddy in class and I was sad to learn in my second week that he had decided to ditch the course and go back to work. Sigh.

When I look back at these 2 months, it did suck meeting people who would come and go and I’d barely get the opportunity to develop a friendship. But I am glad I got to meet them all because they’re from different parts of the world, see things differently, and have a unique story. It’s kept my mind open about possibilities and though not knowing it so much in the present moment, I’ve grown in skills like cultural adaptation, communication skills and interpersonal skills. I’ve learned some Balinese too along the way :).

Even though I’ve had ups and downs, maybe more bored/sad/depressed days than vibrant ones, my time here wouldn’t be without the students. There’s times when I can’t be bothered or don’t see the points in making small talk too, but I realise their presence really matters too. I don’t necessarily have to talk to someone to call them company right?


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