Sunday, August 29, 2010


I woke up very early this morning to get my practice in before we hit the road for home. Ironic that my very first self-practice with these newly added Intermediate poses took place in a hotel that I’ll likely never see again!

I practised in the little exercise room again (my image is reflected in the mirror).

It was too cold to work up much of a sweat, but I *did* sweat, despite the air conditioning and the draft. In David Swenson’s chapter of the Guruji book (which I’m constantly amazed and inspired by - I’m SO enjoying it), he describes ‘the steam rising from the bodies of the practitioners’. It’s just a small detail from the book that has stayed in my memory, but it’s made me more aware that I can generate my own heat regardless of the conditions around me.

I was still stiff in many poses this morning. I’ve put on some chub from all of the restaurant food I’ve been eating, so the wrist bind in Mari D was gone and Supta K, though possible, was initially elusive. And everything else felt just a bit ‘off’.

But I was very focused. I worked steadily through Primary with minimal futzing and moved right into Intermediate. I didn’t repeat any of my Intermediate poses, just did my best with each one. I’m keeping the bar set very low for ‘best’ for awhile until I really learn these poses.

This is really difficult! It’s strange to be working so hard in my practice again. I haven’t felt particularly challenged with Primary in months. With the exception of one or two transitions and the poses affected by my injury, Primary is easy peasy.

The new poses are uncomfortable. They feel foreign to my body and they don’t flow naturally. After I finally finished my very, very mediocre effort in Laghu Vajrasana, I felt relieved. Then I remembered: I still had to do backbending. I think that’s when I fully realised what a long haul this is going to be. My practice is now LONG.

I did three Urdhva Dhanurasana and then surprised myself with three dropbacks (I wasn’t sure I could pull them off). After finishing, I rushed upstairs. I had just a half-hour to get cleaned up and ready to leave!

We hit the road at 8 a.m. with a full tank of gas and I drove non-stop for five-and-a-half hours. By the time we stopped for lunch, I was stiff, tired, cranky and so VERY relieved to be out of that car! I’m not used to sitting in that position for long periods and I rarely drive. My whole body was tense. I stumbled out onto the grass and started spontaneously doing lunges and my mother was amused.

Princess Fur stayed at doggie camp while we were away. She launched into a raucous greeting when I stopped by to collect her, then she proceeded to bawl me out for almost 5 minutes. The staff person observed that she’s a very quiet dog EXCEPT when she’s giving me hell! Even my mother agreed! The Princess was making an Official Complaint! She was NOT HAPPY to be left behind.

It was a long day. Twelve hours after we left Quebec City, we finally pulled into my driveway. I was so relieved! My entire body was a big knot and I was exhausted. I could hardly see straight.

I drove every bloody kilometre of that road trip (and there were approximately 1600 of them!). My mother was no help - since the last time we travelled together, she’s become uncomfortable driving on unfamiliar roads (and she’s never been a helpful navigator - I relied mainly on my iPad GPS to find my way around).

I’ve decided: next time, we’re taking the train!!!

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