Joe Fay, 67, from Australia is a volunteer advisor for community development projects currently working in Bali

What is the greatest lesson life has taught you?
The value of relationships at all levels.

What is most important?

Well, it goes back again to people. Relating to people, sharing problems and happiness and learning together.

What advice would you give the younger generations?

To be true to themselves and evaluate regularly their priorities, not just today and tomorrow but in their lives on the whole. Also not to be swayed by the pack.

Are you worried about dying?
I sure as hell don’t want to die but as I’ve gotten older, what was a fear of death has become more of an acceptance that it has to end at some point. It’s still sad, though.

What was the happiest time of your life?

Raising my daughter.

And the worst?

When I lost my brother a few months ago.

What is humanity all about?
My initial reaction is, “I don’t know.” I think that’s a question that each individual can and should come to their own conclusions about.

Why are there so many conflicts in the world?
For many reasons, but underlying them all is a fear of others. A lack of understanding others creates the fear.

Is a peaceful world possible?


How old do you feel?
Probably about 40 but I know I look 42!

Is one lifetime enough?

No, gimme more. I’d learn from each one.

How has Bali changed?
Enormously. I first came in 1972 and it was much more simple and open. There was an enormous curiosity on the part of travellers towards the Balinese and the Balinese towards travellers.

Has tourism been good for Bali?
It’s a mixed bag, but predominantly negative. This is only a judgement by a foreigner, of course; it’s the Balinese that have to judge for themselves.

What’s the major difference between the East and the West?
Different social values, but again we should be looking for commonalities not differences. We usually concentrate on differences and don’t pursue commonalities.

Have you ever doubted your religion?
Yes, and that’s a good thing. We should all do it.

Filed under: LifeTimes

3 Responses to “”

  1. Molly Says:

    I would be interested in discussing your views on community development in Bali, projects that you are interested in and how a fellow aussie could be involved.

  2. Duncan & Teresa Bottoms Says:

    hi there i am also interested in what you do there as a volenteer we travel to Bali on a reg basis atleast 2 times a year and have become in volved in helping our foreigh prisoners and would like to 1 day live in Bali so any advice on how we can do this would be appreciated or if you can guide us on more help we can give there would be nice
    Duncan Bottoms

  3. Phil Hadden Says:

    Hi Joe,
    As a regular visitor to Bali 4 times a year for the past 18 years. Community development is a concern
    I have watched Bali develop huge traffic problems in recent years, and also developments which are built with good roads and shop fronts etc, only to find 5 years later the focus on the area is lost and the visual look of these locations is lost as soon as the developer gives up or moves on. If only they had levies and a working team to keep them clean and pristine. I could mention a couple of locations but perhaps better not.