Antidote for Blue Mondays

At first I thought it was an obnoxious crowd of drunks creating noise pollution in my already noisy neighborhood. It came out of nowhere, all at once. Folks who are partially pickled don’t usually hit the same level of inebriation at the same time. I’m not an authority, but it seems to begin with one or two, then as the night wears on the rowdiness escalates. My neighbors were full bore from the get-go. Forget trying to think, or read, or concentrate on anything. It was like having a college frat party in my back yard. The racket was continuous. Raucous howls of mirth, peals upon peals of shrill hee-hee-heeing, deep guffaws and whoops and cackles went on, and on, and on, non-stop, for an hour. Inquiring politely into the sudden deterioration of the environment, I had my answer: laughing yoga.

foghorn-blue-maran-rooster-crowing-in-fruit-orchard-8This is a residential neighborhood in Ubud, Bali. Unlike a residential neighborhood in the U.S. where four walls, a closed door, a yard, a fence, and laws about disturbing the peace keep things quietly controlled, here it is not so. Life in Bali is lived openly, on terraces, balconies, and in the streets. So when Dayu next door is talking to Wayan, I hear the conversation. When Nyoman’s cocks are crowing in a wild call-and-response contest with Putu’s roosters, they’re within spitting distance. But you get all that going and add about a hundred people doing laughing yoga and…holy buckets!

It’s every Monday night. I could set my clock by it. I need to make plans for Monday nights. I need to be far away. Although I have to admit, the quiet is tangible when they stop. The absence of their cacophony leaves a silent void.  The roosters are so shocked they don’t crow for a good 15 minutes. Nobody says a word. Peace. It’s almost worth it to hang around just for that.  Or…I could join them…hahahahahahehehehehehohohohohoho…!

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