Primary Friday: Last Day in the Hot Box

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This morning was the final mysore practice with David Swenson.  I haven't had a rest day in over two weeks and it just so happens that today is a moon day and the first day of my "holiday."  Needless to say, today's practice was not memorable for it's lightness or depth in the physical sense.  However, it was special as a celebration of the community that has flourished over the past two weeks practicing together and in the hard-won closure of this incredible experience.

It was tough getting myself out of bed and on my mat by six every morning, especially since I could rarely get to sleep before 11pm, but I've gotten used to the early morning practice and I intend to keep it up, though I can't yet make it through the day without crashing hard in the early afternoon for an hour or three (no joke! Three-hour naps on a regular basis!).  I think my exhaustion is partly due to the heat and extreme humidity in the practice room.  It's also true that working with a senior teacher seems to add a little extra fire to the practice.  Every morning, the sweat ran not in drops but in a steady stream.  Whenever I would round down into Baddha Konasana B, I felt as though I had entered a dark, wet cave that continually rains in on itself.  I could almost hear the fall of the water resonating off the cavern walls.  Eventually, I got used to the heat but that thick, moist air was disagreeable to say the least.

It might be the intensity of the practice, the broken sleep schedule, or something else entirely, but I feel as though I've been walking around in a daze these past two weeks.  I can barely remember what happened the day before and I'm having trouble starting any projects, hence the lack of recent posts.  I hope, as things wind down over the weekend, that I am better able to absorb the experience with David and Shelley.

Now that this program is over and my studio passes for mysore practice with J are all used up, I go back to home practice exclusively, at least for a little while.  I'm looking forward to it.  I suspect that I'll begin to understand what I've learned once I have the opportunity to experience my practice again in the context of my so-called normal life.  I think it will be good for me to withdraw for a while.  Not that I won't be busy -- July is shaping up to be another big month.  I'm teaching lots of extra classes and hope to garner more.  Plus, I'm taking a language course for three hours a day, four days a week for the next six weeks.  That is in addition to an online biology course for which the coursework, I am happy to say, consists almost entirely of watching the Life on Earth documentary series from the 70s, hosted by none other than a young, spry David Attenborough.  I love community college.

I think I can say with total honesty that I have never wanted a rest day more in my entire life.  Tomorrow morning I will wake up late, take an oil bath, and enjoy not doing my practice for a change.  I'm teaching a couple of classes in the afternoon, then the gang from the morning mysore group is getting together one last time for an Ashtangi party in the evening.   I heard rumors of wine and extravagant food to be served.  It's bound to be a good time.

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