Mangoes World

Welcome to the world of Ms M Mango



The countdown is on – I have just over two months and I am 30! I can’t believe that this is happening…

I can remember being a teenager and being excited about being in my 20s, with all of the things to come. I imagined teaching in London, travelling the world and becoming a millionaire.20090806-wanderlust1

For the most part, I have travelled a lot. But really – the more you travel, the more you want to travel. And it is expensive. Not as expensive as buying a house, at least I can say I’ve done that.

The problem with being a ‘wanderlust’ is you get lost in the experiences outside of the world you live in. But they are not a reality. And they are not forever.

Somehow all of these travel aspirations have drifted off in my mind for more prevalent issues, like how to pay my mortgage or what wedding gifts I am going to buy for my friends. As Notorious BIG once said “Mo money, mo problems”.

Turning 30 is a weird feeling. I think that I have finally reached the point in my life where my mind is hanging out in my 20s and my age has surpassed it. It is a strange feeling to know you are one age and feel like you are another. I imagine as you age this feeling doesn’t change. You are still that crazy wanderlust of your 20s, only you have two children, a mortgage and a dog.IMG_0473

I feel like I need to be more responsible, save more money and stop hanging out at underage dance parties. (Insert sarcasm emoji). I don’t care so much for the latest fashion, but I am checking on my Health Insurance to ensure it covers me in emergencies. I am staring at my forehead in the mirror and trying things like an Acupuncture Facial to dissolve the fine lines.

More alarming is the number of children, proposals and marriages that are popping up daily on my Newsfeed. It is like a race to the finish line. Quick!  – Is just symbolic of the stage of the life that I am now in?

In a world of social sharing – how do we stop ourselves from comparing ourselves with others?

I believe that the moment that you stop dreaming about the ‘what if’ and start looking at the ‘what is’ we are able to become happier with our own achievements.

IMG_0479I made the decision a year ago that I would plan to be as fit as possible, to stop eating the bad things and focus on being the best version of myself. I was sick of thinking about things that I wanted to change, so I made the decision to start changing them.

I want to be awesome by 30 and I believe that I am on the right track. Moreover, it is my version of awesome not anyone else’s that counts.


Follow my journey to awesome on Instagram – @MsMMango 

“Find the extraordinary within yourself.”



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Love My Body – #Bali Health Retreat


Love My Body


Love My Body specialises in health retreats and runs 6 retreats per year in Bali, Byron Bay and out of Melbourne. Our health retreats are 6-7 days long or 3 days and leave everyone feeling amazing- with a focus on raw food, green food, lots of training and physical challenges, sunshine, massages, reading, thinking and healing.


Places are also already filling up for our Bali retreat!
The cost is $1950 per person and includes the following:

  • We stay in a beautiful village nestled in the hills of Ubud which has the most beautiful surroundings and natural noises.
  • The food is fresh locally grown and totally free of any nasties, most of which is grown in the village itself and we sip on fresh lemongrass and ginger tea all day long the is constantly re-filled at your bungalow door.
  • We train 2-3 times per day, plus treks up and around the mountain including a trek up the volcano at 3am to see the sunrise.
  • Also included in your package is a full body massage and pampering session at one of Ubud’s best day spa’s, dinner out one night to an organic vegetarian restaurant, a half day at the hot springs after our trek up the volcano and a bike tour.
  • This retreat will leave you feeling clean, light and physically challenged- and with a noticeable change in your body shape!

Your package also includes your transfer to the village on the day of the retreat and to your next destination afterward. you can arrive any time on the afternoon on day 1 and leave around 9-10am on the last day. Flights are excluded but if booked early you can get return flights under $700. Airasia/Jetstar  currently has flights for under $500 return. We recommend booking flights as early as possible to keep the cost down.
*Deposits (50%) for both Bali retreats are due for August retreat by July 15. 




Our next Byron retreat is running September 15th – September 21st 2014. Places are already filling up!
The cost is $2200 which includes the following:

  • On average we train for 3-4 hours per day (it sounds intense but because it is so varied and spread out over mornings and evenings and there is a group of us, you will find it challenging but achievable as a group).
  • The food is from the organic byron bay kitchen- organic raw style food, lots of green! It is delivered to the house each day.
  • We stay in a beautiful modern large house near the beach and town.
  • Days are spent mostly beach/shopping/pool but also in the itinerary, you have 1 hour massage/healing session. 30 minute card reading. 1/2 day of surfing.
  • Restorative yoga every second evening and your bike for the week which we get around on a lot.
  • Please note that we have group discounts on all activities and if you were to go off and do this holiday on your own you couldn’t do it at this cost. There are cheap flights with Jetstar (around $300 return).
  • You are expected at the house by 2pm the day of the retreats and we finish up around 9am on the last day.
  • We use the shuttle bus service from Byron airport which is $20.

*Please reserve your spot in this retreat ASAP. Payment due July 15th. In our last Byron retreat most of lost 2-3 kilograms (including me!) But the main difference was how clean light and energetic we felt afterward- most of the girls have since completely changed their lifestyles. this is one retreat not to be missed!


Mornington Peninsula-

These retreats will run based on attendance so express your interest now! They are 2 nights and 3 days long (Friday-Sunday).
You will be expected at the house by lunch time on the Friday and will leave late Sunday afternoon. They are $850 (excluding travel).
In these retreats we really make the most of 3 days!
They are very detox style and educational- with loads of training, green smoothies and vegetables and educational programs with me each night- on nutrition, weight loss and changing your lifestyles to support a healthy weight and happy outlook.
There will also be a day spa pampering session included at one of Daylesford’s spas and the large house we stay in is simply beautiful!
I promise to leave you bewildered at what we can achieve in just 3 days!
Full payment for our Easter retreat is required for our Christmas retreat October 1st.


Health Retreat Dates 2014
Bali:  August 3rd – 8th price $1950 (excluding flights)
Byron Bay: September 15th-21st  $2200 (excluding travel)
Mornington Peninsula: December 19th – 21st $850 (excluding travel)

Check out the testimonials section to read how effective the Love My Body Health Retreats really are!
Or go to our blog to read my post on both a Bali and Byron retreat.

NB: This post was written by Hayley Roper for



Home isn’t where the heart is..


The older that I get the more I begin to realise those fundamental truths about myself. I find that I have developed a disconnection from home, which has seemed to increase steadily over the last couple of years. I never want to be home. I don’t like going home and I do not like staying there.

But where is home? Most people would figure home into a house that you grew up in a child, or your current place of residence. Going home is supposed to be something significant. Those who live hours from their homes travel back home for the holidays, it becomes something of excitement and represents the holidays. I don’t have that, since my current house is only a 5 minute drive from my parent’s house.

When I lived at my parent’s house, I hated being there. I would do anything to avoid heading home and sitting on the couch with nothing to do. I found it difficult to study at home, and it wasn’t somewhere I ever wanted to be stuck. I never had anything bad happen at home, that would push me to escape. It was a perfect little world, with animals and friends. In search of new experiences, I headed halfway across the other side of the world to go to College. I loved living on Campus, I loved being around my friends all time. And I found myself spending time alone in my dorm. I don’t know how I had as much time as I did to write, as from memory I remember being out all the time.

Upon my return to the Golden Shores of Australia, I moved out of my parent’s house and in with my boyfriend. For the next three and a bit years, I lived amongst his family and felt more connected. I didn’t visit my parent’s much, or as much as I should have. But I believe I was on my own journey to establish myself in my own life. I wanted to push the boundaries of what I knew to be real and true. I wanted to challenge myself.

Still as a child, I lived with my boyfriend and completed my Graduate Diploma of Education. I struggled with the space but felt I could stay. When things went sour, I found myself dislocated again. I wasn’t ready to admit the failures of our relationship and answer the questions from my parents. I searched for an escape and wound up collecting my thoughts with my girlfriend and her partner. A much needed break. But I was still only an alien.

Facing up to reality, I arrived at my parent’s doorstep at 23 years of age. It had been a long journey but I was back where I started, only I had a lot more money. Working full time allowed me the freedom to live and enjoy the experience of living in the family hotel. I found it hard to express myself and being single and living at home didn’t suit my description. I tried to be out as much as possible.

At last I managed to escape to a residence some 5 minutes from my parent’s house. And hence began my journey to settlement. And I tried but ended up half moving out again. I found being at home lonely and boring and the excitement of cooking for myself quickly wore off. Again I ended up co- habituating with another male, having more than half of my wardrobe there. I never came home. I paid rent. I paid bills. But I never lived at home. I would choose to be home alone at his house versus home alone at home.

So here I find myself again, back at home. This time with my boyfriend and a spontaneous furry addition called Isis. But still I am not convinced I want to be there. I still feel like a guest, an alien in my house, surrounded by my own things. I still don’t want to be there alone.

If home isn’t where the heart is, where is it? This is what confuses me the most. As soon as I step foot out of Melbourne, the only place I want to be is home. So there is there hatred of being home, but anxiety of being away. I cant work myself out.

I have toyed with the idea of moving interstate, but I think I will find myself confronting the same demons. For me it has never been the location, it’s just the feeling. How do I change it? The kitten helps a little. She gives me something to want to go home to. But she still doesn’t keep me there. I also don’t know if being home is just a phase for me? I’ve always liked other’s homes better.

I blame this nomadic personality on my parents and the travelling we did as kids. I have travelled for the most part, nearly of the populated areas.. and many that are not populated with people. At every chance we could get, we would escape into the night and end up in Central Australia. They are still ‘poly-homic’ – meaning half the week they live in Melbourne and the other half of the week they are in the country.

I wonder if my disconnection to home has something to do with the fact that I have never wanted to be truly settled? I have never wanted to buy a bed as I have never known where I will be.

The worst part is that you are not young forever. There comes a time to settle and grow up. I still want to escape overseas for months and return with a bronzed tan and a few battle scars. But there is also a side to me that realises that I am too old for the backpacking and living on nothing travelling. I like the fine things.

Maybe it is that I have never found myself permanently settled anywhere, knowing that there is always a time I will move. That every house I live in has an eventual expiry. I feel like a squatter in my own home. Is the answer to purchase my own home? Some how I believe the trap of a solid mortgage will only aide to my suffocation.

When will it all change? Once I reach the 27 Club?



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Gili Gili

Leaving Seminyak we headed into Ubud to the Monkey Forrest. To be honest I wasn’t that keen on visiting the Forrest.. For a couple of reasons; 1) monkeys are disgusting flea bag disease carrying creatures and 2) forrest = vegetation = Mosquitos!

Manning up, Shemu and I crept into the depths of the forrest. We purchased some bananas at the entrance to ensure we didn’t get anything stolen. Shem wanted to see what would happen if he tried to play tug of war with one.

Me on the other hand was using the bananas as a buffer for disease. I am the first to admit that I screamed when one came running towards me with his stinking hands out.

We scored a cute little bungalow villa in a hotel west of the forrest. It was two stories, with the bottom being the bathroom and then you had to climb the steps up to our bed. I say ‘our’ because this was the first time we’d slept in the same bed. “Taking our relationship to the next level.” At this point this was the least of my worries, we were amidst vegetation and this meant the enemy – Mosquitos!!

Panic set in as usual. I left incense to fill the room and carefully let down the Mosquito netting.. It would have been romantic if we were both with someone else. Instead we drifted off in between air conditioner on and off.

The worse part was Shem’s insomnia in combination with the squeakiest door in the world. Worst sleep ever!! I had wished I had taken a sleeping tablet!

Awakening at the crack of dawn, I ate a staple breakfast of pancakes and awaited the arrival of our driver to the harbor.

The Balinese in general are lovely. Each with intricate stories of their lives. Many living in conditions I wouldn’t let my dog sleep in. We had already given a couple of thousand to a lady who slept on the side of the road with one kid in her lap and another behind her. Compelled by their stories of the simple life, we asked our driver to tell us of his life.

Eating three meals of rice per day, and probably earning the equivalent to $2 per day, our driver was bubbly and excited to drive us to the harbor. He told us of living at home with his entire family including parents and working late hours to feed his family.

It really puts perspective on things. I worry mostly about having enough money to travel to buy the things I want. I do not worry about not having enough money to eat. Although with my current employment situation that might come into reality. But everything always works out. I tipped our driver 100,000 which is about $10, which will help out his new born baby, which is unlikely to be educated.

As a lover of sea travel, I was über excited to spend a couple of hours ripping through the water in a speed boat. We made friends with a two boys from Perth. Shem was happy as I had someone to chew the ear off instead of his. I was already complaining of his silences in travel. Nothing bugs me more. “Let’s debate world issues” I always say!

Almost three hours later we get to Gili Trawagan, the largest of the three Gili islands. We hadn’t booked accommodation, which is unlike me. Arriving into the port, we noted that the journey of Asylum Seekers is almost worthy of entry into a foreign country. Being on a shanty wooden boat and traveling for months on the open ocean is a nightmare in itself.

Fresh of the boat we were met with “accommodation” from a local who asked us to follow him down a little filthy lane to a ‘Homestay’ house. I couldn’t have been more disgusted. It reminded me of the crack den hotel Dover and I stayed in Phnom Penh. I was done with it, find me a Internet cafe and I’ll pay $1000.

Fortunately we were able to secure rooms for about $150 a night. That night I was exhausted and could barely wait from Shem to return from the gym. 7pm I was gone. About 9 days of hitting the nightlife in Bali hard, had accumulated to a 12 hour sleep.

Waking up at 7am is so in these days, considering Shem has been awake since 5:30am, it’s just an average morning. The only downside is that you’re up so early that days seem to last forever.

We hired bicycles a little before 8am and head off our a tour of the island. An hour and a half later we arrived back in the same spot. I did however learn a couple of things; 1) buy a bigger bike seat and 2) stand up when you go over bumps. My bottom is ridiculously sore and all I could thinking was about Chelsea and her 250km around the bay. And finally 3) I am totally into bike riding now.

So by 1130am we had cycled the whole island. So what next? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Apart from a snorkel we had done Gili in an hour and a half. I was immensely bored. Should have learnt my lesson on how much I hated Fiji, that I should not go to places with nothing to do. This really doesn’t help my self diagnosed ADD.

I spent the rest of the afternoon being creeped on by a Cuban at the pool bar. Shem had snorkel and landed face to face with a turtle- ‘cockroaches of the sea’.

There is no mechanical transport on Gili, it’s either bicycle or horse and cart. I hated every minute of getting on the back of these horses, who have been working all day. They also look under fed. I felt as if I was paying into this slave labour, but as the roads were unpaved we had no option. On a side note my Samsonite suitcase is full of dirt and I’m not happy.

We rode past a turtle farm and patted the back of the little cuties. I wasn’t keen on holding one, but was happy to donate 100,000 to the conservation. If not for myself then for Linz.

After dinner we planned up to catch up with the boys, but forgot the place we were supposed to meet so we settled into a mattress as hard as the floor. Great!

By the early hours of the morning, I was done with sleeping on concrete and we packed up ready for the boat ride back to Seminyak. This is where I write now. Between sweating profusely and swaying side to side with the waves, I’m feeling lucky they gave me water and a cupcake.

The whole ride from the harbor back to the hotel took two hours. Meaning we began traveling at 10am and finally got to the hotel at 4pm. Absolutely unequivocally a nightmare of the horror variety..

We are ready for GrandmasHotel and KuDeTa. I’m done with sea travel!!

Ps. Gili is a waste of time. Go to Fiji.

~We are shaped by the experiences in which we seek~




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The final thought

So we leave Hawaii, the place where dreams are made of. Had I had been there longer, the only dream I would have would be dreaming of not living on the streets, before the Jacks woke me up and told me to move on.

I loved Hawaii. I would do anything to stay there. (For the complete compilation of what I wouldn’t do, make a prediction). I wasn’t looking forward to coming back to mosquito ridden and rainy Fiji.

I was sad to go, but nothing nine hours on a flight couldn’t cure. Again I was pleased by the vegetarian meals on planes. I was also fortunate enough to lie down for the flight. Linz moved to another chair but had to move again due to Christmas Island in comers. And by this stage I was out cold. Well as much as on can be with a crooked neck. I heard there is a giraffe living with one, I can’t see why I wont survive.

Arriving in Fiji, we luckily enough had transport to our hotel. It was a little less than an hours drive, it was wet and it was late. Checking into our hotel was easy, but no food in sight. So we decided to go straight to bed.

As soon as we awoke it was raining. Our villa was cute and I got the double bed. This was due to a rock off we had at The Royal Grove. I had chosen the double bed of the next hotel, which left Linz with the double there. Until this place, I thought I chosen the short straw. As long as it’s not a air bed I’m happy.

Fiji is well, boring. I found it hard to settle for days of nothing. Perhaps because there is no sun? It’s hot and there is nothing but reading and writing to do. Which is awesome for two days.. But the big factor is the lack of energy burning. This results in my insomnia and more frustrating for Linz, who has to put up with the late night- early morning routine.

Our first full day we headed into Sigatoka for shopping. As if I needed to make more purchases. On the positive side, we saw a few more white people. On the negative side, apparently ‘Fiji time’ extends for 45 minutes! We were least impressed, while waiting for our driver. You’d assume $50 FJD would get you some sense of urgency. But then again we were riding with a kid who had two rat tails.. Who let them out?

Our Friday consisted of reading and writing. It began with my stomach not feeling well, a usual result for different food. Thank god for America’s own Pepto Bismal. (Stomach pain relief, not De-gas or Dihorrea tablets, that Silva has eloquently taped to my desk. I’m just thinking about this year’s students seeing the packet and being horrified. It’s just short of Bowler letting my form group assume I’m away because of the squirts.)

We caught a cab to the sister resort for a change of scenery. There were loads more people but it wasn’t entirely full. It was a beautiful place to sit and write. I did feel bad for those who chose Fiji as a pick up destination. Where ever da party’s at, it ain’t here!

It did bring to my attention the influx of Australian tourists. I feel proud of my country until I step into a shop and hear an undercut wearing bogan and her husband have a whinge at the 2.6% VAT added onto her purchases. Forgetting the 11% GST good ole Howard added within the price and that different countries have well, differences. “If you did that in Australia, you’d be sued!” The red neck scumbag decided that it would take the Fijians too long to add it all up and walked out. I was embarrassed for Australia and felt like I was Kevin Rudd about to give his apology in embarrassment of previous generations. Doesn’t customs have some sort of screening process to keep these kind of scumbags in remote Australia? I’m pretty sure there are some cattle that need mustering or beers that need pulling? Or at the very least, garbage that needs sorting. I have vowed to myself that if I ever witness such rude behavior that ‘I’ll pull out me knife and slay the beast with me bear hands’.

Retuning to our villa on the infamous Coral Coast, we nestled back into reading. We did take a short walk to the waters edge and discover bright blue starfish and some ugly phallic looking sea urchins. They scared the phallic out of us.

For our last day the sun came out. Finally I had an opportunity to get my black on! So I sat myself by the pool. I hadn’t had much tanning, only a few days here and there so this was the perfect opportunity. And get my black on I did. Including the sunnies tan. It’s not my most attractive feature, but its all I’ve got.

We had also booked a snorkeling trip just off the coast. I had forgotten how much I love swimming, the weightlessness and speed. It’s remarkably quiet and solitary, but it’s what you learn to love. I’ve learnt I need to do some more mind relaxing activities. There were loads of cute little fishies and some pretty corals. I learnt that I often won’t swim because it’s cold. I preferred staying in close to avoid the ocean temperatures!

That night we were invited to a session of Kava by the staff at the hotel. I had already bought some to take with me, but I was keen to give it a crack. Kava is a herbal relaxant, it is supposed to calm you down and send you to sleep. “Perfect, this is just what I needed to avoid staying up all night and waking up early.” Sitting around the bowl of Kava, we elected democratically by way of sex, Mick. He had the power to begin each round and end them. Other members of our tribe included Linz, an Australian Mother and her 12 year old daughter and the English retirees, Lesley and Mick. Opting for his first taste of Kava to be ‘high tide’, (the larger bowl) he had his first taste. Onwards to Linz who despised the rooty delight. According to a source “peer-pressure was high, but the outcome would be vomit”. Linz took a sip and passed it on. When it came to my turn, I was ‘high tide’ all the way. I wanted to get to sleep before 1am, I was racking up with the boys. Apparently the ritual of having Kava would become a way of playing chicken with males. I was in! Numerous glasses later, I was more energized than ever. We went back to my room and I couldn’t sleep and I woke up at 8am. (With a headache, apparent side effect of Kava.)

The last day of our holiday was spent lounging around and preparing for our journey to the airport. We were being picked up 2pm, with the expectation of being at the airport at 4pm. Lest we forget the numerous pickups that added on the extra hour to our journey. Gagh!

Lest we forget, Linz not having the facilities to wash her hands and committing herself to throwing out anything she touches until she can wash them.

Arriving at the airport, we checked in successfully. And by successfully I mean, Em and her 38kgs and Linz and her 50kgs. We smiled and eyelashes were fluttered. We were also informed that we were on standby. Had we had not made the flight I would have been furious.

I am deeply disappointed by our lying flight itinerary! It had set us up with high hopes of a 4 1/2 journey back home. Where in reality it was actually five pushing six hours. In addition I think a whole family holiday of over 20 people including impossible preteens and screaming babies. Once a teacher always a teacher, both Linz and I told off the obnoxious little girls running around the plane.

Seriously? This is not the root of all evil on this afternoon turned red eye flight. Was it the fact I was sitting in close proximity of four continually flushing toilets? Or was it man who I sat next to, picking his nose and flicking them onto the floor? I will let you decide. It’s like a Goosebumps ‘Choose your own ending’ decision.

So in conclusion, upon reflecting of our journey we have felt that it has been a success. No hating as Silva and Bowler had predicted. We had a few issues, as you do, but nothing of great drama worth recording and publishing. We did have many moments that remain to strive for comedic reenactments. Such as the rivaled ‘log master’ theories of the universe or the daily Red Neckisms, and even the spelling quiz.

In terms of achieving the mission objectives. I think we did well. I was unable to find a beloved leather jacket, but it’s not like the 100s of clothing of items I purchased, wont be able to make up for it.

Finally, we pay homage to the airport ‘pickeruperer’ who has saved my back from lugging almost 40kgs and two bottles of alcohol.

And yes… We do like Pina Coladas!

Linz and Em

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