Erm... Has it really been ONE WEEK since I've been back from Mysore? I'm not really sure what to make of it. I've settled back into life in Amsterdam quite nicely and Mysore feels like a distant dream already. Practising in my cold living room in the mornings is ALREADY a freaking mission. I had the good intention of cycling out to Prinseneiland to do P+R's Mysore workshop this week, but the COLD WINTER has made me go into hibernation mode already and I can't seem to roll myself out of my warm bed. WTF?!?
I've got some lovely pictures from those last few days in Mysore, but I suppose I was delaying downloading them from my camera coz... Well... Maybe that would make my being back in the Dam a reality. And reality bites. Kinda sorta, not really.
Here are pictures from those last days of all the beautiful people (and animals) that I met along the way.
1. DOGS OF MYSORE
Juanita of Anokhi Garden.
Baghee of Ganesh's (named after the character in Jungle Book)
PS. Alice: Jungle Book is by Rudyard Kipling. It's NOT a story from India! ;p
Spotty stray puppy who hangs out at the top of Shala street. He's sleeping in the dirt on the side of the road here, then Mama-Dog came to check out what I was doing!
2. GURU FROM THE COCONUT STAND
3. LUNCH WITH ADIL & FRIENDS
Adil sells incense and essential oils at the Devaraj Market. He's the dude I met in my first week in Mysore, and he invited my friend Nass and I to a lunch he cooked. We brought a whole party to his shop to buy some oils before heading to his house.
4. SUNNY, MY HEALER
She's a Korean lady living in Pennsylvania who practices an ancient form of healing called Pavanamukhasana (I hope I got the name right), and I can only describe it as a mash-up of Indian-style Osteopathy mixed with Rolfing mixed with Thai massage mixed with energetic realignment mixed with physical realignment. I call her my "healer" coz she combines all the above with her intuitive gift of sussing out where your problems are. I've had some woo-woo moments with her and meeting her is definitely one of the highlights of this Mysore trip.
5. WALK AROUND THE LAKE
Believe it or not, there is a BEAUTIFUL lake in Mysore. Some say it's a bit dangerous to go walking around it by yourself since it can be quite desolate depending on the time of day you go. Nass goes with our rickshaw driver, Maney, and Alice and I tagged along on my last day in Mysore. Yes, I went for a 45-minute walk around the lake after a 1.5hr led Primary class at 4.30am.
(Good old Maney, my rickshaw driver!)
6. BYE BYE, SHALA!
No photos allowed in the shala. I DID NOT TAKE THESE SHOTS!! I took my camera back from my friend and was surprised to find these shots. There are more, but I am respectfully NOT posting them. ;)
7. BYE BYE, TO ALL MY TEACHERS!
Lakshmish, my Chanting and Sanskrit teacher. Good old Lakshmish, I'm very fond of him!
He also gave me back my last round of homework. I was surprised to get them all correct. I think he helped me with one stroke on the last word but counted that as all right. Hehe.
Saraswati. I will remember the day when she only seemed interested in assisting people with dropbacks. She was whizzing around to everyone who were finished with backbends just so she could drop them back. Which Grandma's gonna be doing THAT?!
Sharath, my teacher. I dunno why I'm in a mid-squat against the wall. My nervousness around him makes me do ridiculously un-normal things.
PS. You can see "Sharath is a Mac". Haha.
PPS. While we were all waiting to see him outside his office, here is Miss Tova with her little gift for his kids. Very cute!
8. BYE BYE, TO ALL MY BEAUTIFUL FRIENDS!
For some reason, Facebook seems to have taken over the Ashtangis lives in Mysore. So I created a Facebook event as a Farewell lunch for a bunch of us who were leaving Mysore that week. I called it "B'Bye KPJAYI Class of January 2011!" HAHAHA!
The Ashtanga world is sooooo small, I am so sure I'll be meeting up with everyone in these pictures again soon enough, at some point down the road. There have already been so many instances of TWO degrees of separation (yes two, not six), it's still mind-boggling to me.
Also - Ashtangis are a truly special breed of people. I am thankful for having met so many of these gorgeous peeps. Yes, I said "peeps". So shoot me.
9. DRIVE TO BANGALORE AIRPORT
Yes, even though there is now ONE flight a day between Bangalore and Mysore airports, there's nothing quite like that 4-hour car ride to and from Bangalore Airport. We started at around 7pm and arrived around 11pm. Waaaaaaaaay past my bedtime. It's a tad freaky to be riding in a strange man's car in the middle of the night in India as a solo female, so I made sure to keep my eyes open. With the amount of tooting going on, that wasn't difficult at all.
Also, my driver was blasting Bangra versions of Indian chants, I had a blast bopping along to them. Except when they came on repeat for the FIFTH TIME. Yes, the lyrics are really "Hare Om, Hare Om, Hare Krishna Krishna Om". Turn up the sound on your computer to listen to this. :)
Phew... I hope this super long post with shitloads of photos and a video has made up for my radio silence in the past week. I still have more Mysore stories and memories to share but I suppose I'm also readjusting back to life in the "real world" at the moment (where winter exists).
Right now, it's just nice to be able to do my laundry (WITH SOFTENER!), throw my toilet paper down the toilet (not in a bin next to the loo) and eat Thai food (non-existent in Mysore). But since it's Friday tonight, I'm going out to dinner (my first Indian meal since being back!) and the movies (I think it's gonna be Black Swan).