And then came the rain....
I walk in silence. Just trying to see if this place fits. I let it surround me like a blanket - enveloping myself in the smells, sights and sounds around me. The woman at the juice stand recognizes me now. With a smile she hands me the passionfruit juice that has become part of my lunch ritual. She already has my order down in just a week. I don't think this has ever happened to me before. Of course, I don't usually have a routine.
I follow a nun walking down the street. She gives me the same glance she gives to the locals. Have I assimilated that quickly? Yesterday at the spa, the therapist working on me did not believe I was a westerner, until I said "Hawaii" upon which she smiled. It is a strange feeling to not stick out anymore. I get to blend better here than I ever have.
I feel like running, but don't want to push it. My health has normalized and I feel good. I am getting it figured out what my body can and cannot have. Maybe tomorrow I can run. Put on the headphones and just breeze down the sidewalk in my slightly-lighter-than-last-week frame. I feel very good.
Last week was all heat and fire. And the came the rain. Saturday evening it began - gray clouds rolling in over the city - making the mountains loom like guardians waiting to protect us from the torrents of mother nature. It came on so suddenly and fiercely, that I had to just stand in the doorway of the room and admire the fury in blissful awe. I say blissful because it brought a break from the oppressive heat. For once in the time since we arrived, I wasn't sweating. I tried to capture the moment in picture, but I am realizing that my best pictures are the ones I can write about. I have few camera skills - I will leave that to the pros in my life.
I had planned on meeting the girls at a movie, but the onslaught of rain forced me in. So I wrote. And wrote. And wrote until my head and hands were about to explode. I am inspired like I never have been before. I don't know if it is the city, the time away from the norm or what... I can't get enough.
Today was back to class where my flexibility has improved greatly and my skills are being honed daily. I look forward to putting it all together at the end of the week to see how it all goes. I can't help but laugh at my swagger before coming here. I was so cocky about this work - I thought I would come here to refine and learn some new things (maybe) - instead, I am re-learning how to do the work correctly and in a different sequence than what I learned before. It can be frustrating - especially when I think I have it down and realize that I don't. So, I had to jet after class today - I had to find my own space away from the group to clear my head and do the things that I need to do.
Herve' (previously mentioned as Harvey - my bad), took me to a Japanese Infrared Sauna. I sat for 50 minutes in a progressively high temperature and sweat out my frustration. He swore by the detoxifying effects (I wasn't disappointed), and we booked appointments for tomorrow after class. It gave me the same rush as my spa day, but cost much less :)
After the sauna, we walked in a park right in the middle of the city. Families were having picnics, there was some very dirty looking Thai massage going on (literally dirty - not naughty for those of you who need clarification), badminton games were in progress and joggers and walkers were navigating around the trail. There was a lovely pagoda-esque area in the center where apparently you can find Tai Chi every morning. We talked about his travels, his time in India at the ashram, his many friends all over the world. We talked about Fairfield, Iowa and his great desire to go there to spend time in the Vedic City. It was a peaceful interlude in a frustrating day.
After the walk and cooling off, we hoped on his bike and he took me to where the best vegetarian restaurant, tapas bar and salad restaurant all exist in close proximity. I was enthralled. I am in love with this city.
As he dropped me off at the guest house, I realized that once again I was inspired to write. And so here I go again :)