Baby steps and leaps

Sometimes, the best things come out of signing up to do something wonderful that you are terrified to do… so, I’m looking forward to the morning of October 7th, with both nerves and extreme delight.

Post-a-day 2018

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Being a Teacher

I watched tonight a lecture from Yogi Bhajan on the matter of being a Teacher, as part of my yoga teacher training.

It really got to me, down deep and all throughout…

The meditation at the end was 11 minutes of a certain exercise and mantra, which began as easy and became very difficult by the end of it (as is often the case)….

… but I broke down in tears for the first few minutes of the meditation, as my body and mind began to process further and to accept what Yogi Bhajan had said in the lecture.

It was so powerful for me, I think, because I am not only just doing this yoga teacher training, but have found myself already being a school teacher these past several years… I am not just here to be a yoga teacher, it seems, but to be a Teacher through and through.

And that scared me.

I think it still does.

Post-a-day 2018

But I love to sleep

It’s almost midnight, and I’m waking up at 3:40am…

My Sunday went from too much to empty relaxation to beautiful difficulty and relaxation.

Actually, today was quite similar…, I just wish now that it had wrapped things up sooner this evening, so I could have slept some more tonight.

Perhaps I can nap tomorrow.

(Mmm, naps…)

So, it’s a total yikes for tomorrow, but I expect it to be really good, and on many accounts.

Post-a-day 2018

Dirty Dancing Magic

Have you ever seen the film “Crazy, Stupid, Love”, with Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell (among other familiar faces)?  (If you haven’t, you can watch it on Netflix!)  ***If you don’t want anything ruined from the movie, do not read this next part.***  Remember the scene where Emma Stone’s character asks Ryan Gosling’s what his line is for getting girls to sleep with him?  So, he finally comes out with the fact that he does the “Dirty Dancing” lift.  She doesn’t believe him, but they do the lift anyway, and, of course, she totally falls for him at the end of the lift.

So, why is this relevant?

You see, I do acro-yoga – at least, I have re-started doing acro-yoga again, after a three-ish-year break.  The other night, at a sort of practice/hangout session (called a “jam”), one of the guys offered to test out a certain standing lift with me.  It was not the most basic option, so we agreed to do the simpler option first.  And what was that option?  The “Dirty Dancing” lift.

It definitely takes effort from both parties to make it work properly, so the “Crazy, Stupid, Love” version makes it look too simple.  “Dirty Dancing” is definitely closer to the kind of effort it actually would take a newbie flyer/follow to pull off the lift.  I’ve done lifts in dance routines before, and even a throw/toss, so I’m practiced in the concept of lifts, but I’ve never done that particular lift in a routine.  Anyway, so it took a few almosts, and then we had the lift down perfectly.

And it felt like flying… or something.  I’ve never actually flown (I think), so I can’t actually compare anything to flying, but it definitely felt magical and like I was more than just physically ‘above’ everything around me – I felt like I was on a higher plane of life.  And, of course, that I was utterly beautiful in this specific position, muscles flexed beautifully, like a fairy zooming overhead.

And this guy helped me to be in this position – it was because of him that I was in such a place of wonder and beauty…. I suddenly totally could get why girls would want to ravish the guy who did that lift with them.  Fortunately, I knew the guy and the general activity well enough to keep him and the actual task separate from one another in my head.  Otherwise, I would have been a total mess full of goo-goo eyes for him for weeks.  But I fully understood what could be so attractive, so sexy, so desirable about doing that lift.  I mean, how often do people normally put me into a place of magical wonder, and make me feel more beautiful than the whole world?  (Perhaps your life is different from mine, but I’ll let you know: It is extremely rare for me.)  😛

That being said, I have two things: 1) Totally try out acro-yoga, because it’s a blast and is totally easy, even if you aren’t super fit or anything.  2) I recommend giving the “Dirty Dancing” lift a try at some point in your life, guy or girl, because it is magical and awesome (as I have already mentioned multiple times).  🙂

Post-a-day 2018

Cultural Pants with Mom

Have you ever gotten creative with your clothing?  I certainly have.  Tonight was just an average ‘work with what you’ve got’ kind of night with clothes.  For tomorrow, I’d chosen to wear an Indian tunic – I think the actual name might be kurta, but I’m not sure.  However, I don’t have any pants or leggings that really go with the colors of it, and black is totally not an option, because its bright colors are just too happy for black.

So, I asked my mom if she had any leggings or pants I could wear with the top.  At first, she brought me Vietnamese yellow pants, which almost look Indian, but the color combined with the style was just not passable.  The tunic is a sort of reddish pink, with orange and green embroidery and stitching.  Bright yellow, baggy pants just weren’t the look I was going for.  I wanted the focus to be the top, not the bottoms.  I will wear said pants, however, on a different occasion, you can be sure.

After checking greens and purples, all to no avail, my mom brings in a skirt that is the exact color of the green embroidery and stitching of the tunic.  The fabric is different, but the color is darn near exact.  “But it’s a skirt,” I declared and repeated, somewhat laughing.  I tried it on.  My mom said it looked all right, but it totally was not the look I’d wanted.  ‘This is what we call “cultural confusion”…  I was going for “cultural fusion.”‘

We both laughed and stared at the perfect match of color and utter clash of styles.

And then I saw it.  “Aha!”  I bent over and grabbed the center of the skirt, both the front and back of it, through my legs.  As I stood up, my mom knew exactly what I was doing.

Five minutes later, we had it.  I eventually had to take it off and turn it inside out to make it all balance properly, but we knew it would work after the second knot I made while still wearing it.  We tied the skirt in a few places in the center to give the illusion of one type of traditional Indian pants (think Indian yoga pants), and it worked marvelously.  No, they don’t look exactly like the real thing, but they do look like what I’d wanted: cultural fusion and fabulous.

I wonder how it will go off tomorrow, in a world of latino heritage.  I look forward to the opportunity to respond to something like, ‘Cool pants!’ with a, ‘Oh, thanks.  I’m not wearing any.’  Or something silly like that.  We’ll see.  Whatever the case, though, I’ll be in an outfit that I love and that has been created with love from me and my mom.  I think that’s the best part, as usual, of course.

 

P.S.  I’ll see if I can get a photo of it all tomorrow at some point.

P.P.S.  Okay, so it turned out that I wore the yellow pants to bed, because it was so cold, and they were soft and comfortable.  Not what I’d had in mind when I considered wearing them soon, but oh, well…  😛

Post-a-day 2017

Musical Theatre

I declared that I would buy season tickets for my mom and me to the musical theatre whenever I got my first full-time, normal-ish job.  So, when I had my first contracted teaching job, I got season tickets.  For two years, we stayed with it, and it was great.  But then I moved here (Japan), and so we stopped the tickets for this current season.

However, I want to speak to two of the shows from those two seasons.   The two shows to which I looked the most forward were The Little Mermaid and Evita.  I quite likely know (or at least knew at some point) all the words to all of the songs in both of these two musicals, I love them so much.  Until these past two years, though, I had never seen either performance (just the movies).

When we finally made it to the performance of each show, rather than being overwhelmed with delight, I was actually rather let-down.  Why?  Because my favorite songs were cut.  Yup.  Really.

In The Little Mermaid, the US theatre folk decided to make a different song for Ursula, even declaring it better for children.  Except that this new song was significantly less exciting musically, and it had a terrible message being sent loud and clear, so to speak – I was hated, because I was ugly, so I killed my sisters in order to win my father’s favor.  The whole reason I had ever wanted to see the stage production of The Little Mermaid was for Ursula’s song (“I Want the Good Times Back“).  And it had suddenly disappeared.  My excitement for the show went with it – it just became some average show at that point.  Not that I don’t find the performers to be totally talented – because I do find them talented – I was just not so thrilled about the show itself at that point.

The story of Evita was similar, but not so distressing.  Rather than replacing one of my favorite songs, the song just disappeared.  (“The Lady’s Got Potential“)  Also, I think one of my preferred verses of another song was missing, but I’m not sure.  I just remember the rock song with the fabulous words, “Ka-pow, die!” was missing.  😛  Naturally, I was disappointed in the missing chunk of the show.  Performers were still talented; the show itself was just lacking.

 

I’m not sure why I decided to share this in particular, instead of the silly afternoon and evening I spent at the gym, doing yoga classes and boxing classes, and what might have been a tai-chi class; chatting with all the ladies afterward; running into one of the ladies afterward at the supermarket; her asking if I’d bought my vegetables; my explaining how I hadn’t bought any vegetables, because I couldn’t until tomorrow, since the ATMs were already closed and I had no cash (jolly dreadful bit of living in Japan, really), so I had just bought a snack with the 100-yen coin I’d found in my bag; ending up having a fabulous Nepalese dinner with her (at her total insistence); rushing out as smoking was allowed just after 8pm in the restaurant; and then, again at her total insistence, being driven home the short distance from the restaurant by the wonderful lady.  And I even remember her name still.  Anyway, I guess the outline is all you get.  Have a great one, world!

 

Post-a-day 2017

 

Yoga and Winter Blues

Right as I was heading through the rising action into the climax of a film I was watching before bed this evening, my best friend and I ended up texting one another over some e-mails and SNL (Saturday Night Live) sketches from earlier in the day, and, since we were already interacting, she invited me to do yoga with her.  Naturally, I knew she meant from some online video, and not something that required me to leave my living room or put on real clothes, because, as you might already know (click here to know how you might already know), we are living in different countries (England and Japan).  Since my life is totally normal and all, I had no hesitation in pausing the movie at 10pm to do a 30-minute yoga set for winter blues with my bestie.

We put up FaceTime on my laptop and her phone, so we could see one another and be together, and then we synchronized the youtube video on each of our computers (I then muted mine, having us both listening to her computer, but each watching on our own screens).  It took us a bit to get started, as we went back and forth about whether or not to wear bras and pants (American pants, as we already had the British ones), but I finally gave up on trying to find either, and settled myself in front of the heater to keep my legs warm (since I wasn’t sitting underneath a super cozy blanket anymore).  The only requirement was doing downward dog facing one another, so we wouldn’t get a face full of bums on our screens…. except that we still discussed and tested doing downward dog from facing away from one another (I put on a scarf as a sort of half-loincloth in the back), so as to establish that we could, in fact, look at one another during the pose, delighting in one another’s faces (despite the legs and bums also noticeably visible).

And so we did a wonderful little yoga set from this great girl in Austin, Texas (who happens to have a strong resemblance to a friend of ours from high school).  We chuckled.  I made all sorts of silly noises (thanks to my It is freakin’ cold here, how on Earth do people function like at all in this country in wintertime lack of outdoorsiness (and thereby exercise) these past two-ish months).  And we never really flashed one another.  (Though downward dog is quite funny when your own shirt is loose, and shivs down (up?) over your eyes as your put your head downward.)  And it was great.  Totally simple.  Totally normal (for us, anyway, though I’m not sure we’ve ever done this together before).  Totally great.

I love best friends.  I love being naturally silly.  I love yoga.  I love my best friend.  I love warm weather.

And I love that we’re still on FaceTime with one another, though I’m busy writing and she’s busy eating lunch and reading, and we aren’t even talking to one another right now – we’re just hanging out together, and I love it.

 

P.S.  In case you, too, want to beat the winter blues (I really do love the music kind, though), here’s the video we used.  Take special care to note her various comments throughout the set, as well as the dog that shows up in the final couple seconds of the video.

 

Post-a-day 2017

#yogawithadrienne #winterblues