Dear friends and loved ones: My birthday’s coming up soon. If I were home, I’d be planning a stupid, expensive birthday party and you’d all be buying me gifts and bottles of wine. A cheaper, more lovely way to celebrate would be to make a donation to help a healer named Wayan Nuriyasih buy a house in Indonesia. She’s a single mother. ln Bali, after a divorce, a woman gets nothing, not even her children. To gain custody of her daughter, Tutti, Wayan had to sell everything, even her bath mat, to pay for a lawyer. For years, they’ve moved from place to place. Each time, Wayan loses clientele and Tutti has to change schools. This little group of people in Bali have become my family. And we must take care of our families, wherever we find them. Today l saw Tutti playing with a blue tile she’d found in the road near a hotel construction site. She told me: Maybe if we have a house someday, it can have a pretty blue floor like this. When I was in Italy, I learned a word – It’s “tutti” with double T, which in ltalian means “everybody.” So that’s the lesson, isn’t it? When you set out in the world to help yourself, sometimes you end up helping Tutti.
Eat Pray Love, Elizabeth Gilbert