A few months after I'd left Indonesia, I returned to visit loved ones and to celebrate the Christmas and New Year's holiday. My flight landed in Bali only two hours after Southeast Asia was struck by a tsunami of staggering destruction. Acquaintances all over the world contacted me immediately, concerned about the safety of my Indonesian friends. People seemed particularly consumed with this worry: "Are Wayan and Tutti OK?" The answer is that the tsunami did not impact Bali in any way whatsoever (aside from emotionally, of course) and I found everybody safe and sound. Felipe was waiting for me at the airport (the first of many times we would be meeting each other at various airports). Ketut Liyer was sitting on his porch, same as ever, making medicine and meditations. Yudhi had recently taken work playing guitar in some fancy local resort and was doing well. And Wayan's family was living happily in their beautiful new house, far away from the dangerous coastline, sheltered high in the rice terraces of Ubud.
With all the gratitude I can summon (and on Wayan's behalf), I would now like to thank everyone who contributed money to build that home:
Sakshi Andreozzi, Savitri Axelrod, Linda and Renee Barrera, Lisa Boone, Susan Bowen, Gary Brenner, Monica Burke and Karen Kudej, Sandie Carpenter, David Cashion, Anne Connell (who also, along with Jana Eisenberg, is a master of last-minute rescues), Mike and Mimi de Gruy, Armenia de Oliveira, Rayya Elias and Gigi Madl, Susan Freddie, Devin Friedman, Dwight Garner and Cree LeFavour, John and Carole Gilbert, Mamie Healey, Annie Hubbard and the almost-unbelievable Harvey Schwartz, Bob Hughes, Susan Kittenplan, Michael and Jill Knight, Brian and Linda Knopp, Deborah Lopez, Deborah Luepnitz, Craig Marks and Rene Steinke, Adam McKay and Shira Piven, Jonny and Cat Miles, Sheryl Moller, John Morse and Ross Petersen, James and Catherine Murdock (with Nick and Mimi's blessings), Jose Nunes, Anne Pagliarulo, Charley Patton, Laura Platter, Peter Richmond, Toby and Beverly Robinson, Nina Bernstein Simmons, Stefania Somare, Natalie Standiford, Stacey Steers, Darcey Steinke, The Thoreson Girls (Nancy, Laura and Miss Rebecca), Daphne Uviller, Richard Vogt, Peter and Jean Warrington, Kristen Weiner, Scott Westerfeld and Justine Larbalestier, Bill Yee and Karen Zimet.
Lastly, and on a different topic, I wish I could find a way to properly acknowledge my cherished Uncle Terry and my Aunt Deborah for all the help they gave me during this year of travel. To call it mere "technical support" is to diminish the importance of their contribution. Together they wove a net beneath my tightrope without which--quite simply--I would not have been able to write this book. I don't know how to repay them.
In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it's wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.