This is probably ‘safe for work’ as long as incense is allowed. Seen in the Shala waiting area this morning:
The Buddha is happy to see you!
I’ve had a stretch of extremely Good Transit Karma recently. This morning, I left for the Shala ten minutes late, but arrived ten minutes early. The minute I stepped onto the subway platform: SUBWAY! The minute I cleared the last few steps to the street: STREETCAR! This *never* happens, but it’s been going on for days. Frankly, this frightens me because I know that a follow-up stretch of Bad Transit Karma will surely follow. I’m enjoying it while it lasts.
Practice was good this morning. I kept my expectations low because I was feeling tired. I told myself: “Don’t be a hero, Kai. Just do the Primary Express.” And I mostly stuck to that. When I got to Supta Kurmasana, Teacher P was standing at the top of my mat, watching. As I moved into it, I couldn’t see his face, but I could practically *feel* his eyebrows raise skeptically. So I explained what I was trying to do.
In a dry, level voice, he said: “Usually it’s better to wait until you can reliably get both legs behind your head.”
Well, yeah. I suppose that’s how a *sensible* person would go about it, but I’m impatient! ;-)
I don’t think he was annoyed, more just thinking that once again, I’m getting *way* ahead of myself and I just need to slow the heck down. He helped me into the pose (I needed assistance with the bind because I was well out of Kurmasana) and crossed my ankles for me, really tight this time. Then he helped me lift up: “Keep your ankles crossed!”
It was AWESOME!
I lifted up and tried to nail the exit. Not bad! At least I’m doing the vinyasa correctly. R is right - keeping my head up in Bakasana makes it MUCH easier to get my legs in place and lift. Still can’t get my hips to float for the jumpback though. I think this will come as I continue to develop my vinyasa jumpbacks.
I’ll keep working on opening my hips and bringing my legs behind my head until I can do it on my own. When it’s foolproof, I’ll start doing it at the Shala. I don’t think P will have any objection as long as I can get there on my own. At this point, the juiciest part of my practice is Bhujapidasana through the Supta K exit. It doesn’t feel impossible to me anymore and I’m enjoying tweaking it along.
If I’m going to be forever mired in the Primary Series, I’m going to make it a GREAT Primary Series and enjoy it!
Parsvottanasna-leg-width update: Today, I tried 3 feet, since Teacher P was ‘on duty.’ He seemed happy with that. Given my druthers, I like this distance; it works for me.
My weekend social calendar is full and the fun starts tonight: Dinner with the posse and maybe drinks somewhere afterward. I can stay out late and live dangerously because there will be no illicit Astanga practice on Saturday! I need to rest. I’ll probably do some Yin or Hatha to round out my week. I’m in workshops all weekend, so I need to conserve my energy.
Princess Fur likes to use my lap as her own personal hammock. She’s literally ‘draped’ over my leg in this photo. Minutes before, she had her head hanging toward the floor and she was snoring!