Fiction: Dewi´s Time
When Ketut was but a thought in his mother´s womb, his family was living in New York in a little apartment where the three girls shared a bedroom with bunk beds for the twins and a side bed for Komang. The city had been their home for many years, more than Dewi had ever hoped for, Enrique had a good job there and life was easy, yet not spacious. Dewi missed the island she was born and raised in; she had not seen her family in over 7 years and was becoming a bit homesick.
She spoke to the girls in Indonesian as much as she could, even though the twins answered her in English. They were in High School and speaking Indonesian was just “not cool”, the minimal Spanish they learned to speak when they were little was somewhere in the back of their memory. Komang was a little better with all three languages and the twins always teased her lovingly about it.
It was a very snowy and cold Friday morning, all three girls were off to school and Dewi was working on a watercolor of her childhood memories; jungle, crops, cows, volcanoes and temples to Dewi Sri, her namesake and the goddess of the rice fields. It was as she mixed some grey paint to spot ash clouds over the mountain that she knew.
Dewi was pregnant. She felt it in her soul and she knew this baby had to be born on the island. She sat there in front of her artwork smiling, as the snow outside hit the sidewalk in flurries. Even if the baby was very new inside her, she knew it’s name; Ketut. The Balinese have a custom of using the same four names with minimal variations for all the children regardless of sex, a second name can be added if the family so wishes.
Dewi’s complete name was Nyoman Dewi, meaning that she was the third child in her family. The baby she was carrying would be Ketut because it was the fourth child she bore with Enrique.
With the realization of Ketut’s existence she knew it was time. Time to leave the city and go back to the island. It was the time for Hindu temples and colorful offerings for her ancestors. It was time for change and new experiences. Enrique had been in Bali when they first met that rainy day in Kintamani, and their world travels had taken them many places but never back. It was time for the girls to know their roots. And maybe when Ketut was older they could go to Peru and discover their father’s heritage too.
The conversation between Enrique and Dewi that night was a happy one. He understood her need for close family and promised her that they would be in Bali in time for Ketut’s arrival. The girls were a little sad to leave their New York friends but were excited about having a little brother (Dewi just knew). The twins had photos of Bali from when they were very little but didn’t remember any of it, Komang had never been and was the most excited of all.
In less than a month, all their things where packed; they didn’t have too much, their largest possession was an ever growing library that Enrique could not part with and followed them all over the globe.
With backpacks and suitcases and art supplies and favorite pillows, the family said goodbye to the New York winter and embarked on yet another adventure across the world, this time to look for Ketut who was waiting for them at the foot of the Volcanoes of the Gods.