Saturday, January 11, 2014

eggs & yoga

Stuck behind a truck -- just my luck -- on a narrow street I use as a "cut-through" for so long that my well-timed morning was ruined & riding wasn't an option (it's BAFTA Tea Party day & so we must gussy up to be on show, meeting and greeting) I swung by Le Pain Quotidien for some brioche. I spied in the window an elderly woman with bleached blonde hair and a rather pretty pink lipstick, drinking tea and eating boiled eggs and toast. "You look awfully happy" I said to her. "I hope you don't mind me saying so, but you've inspired me to make eggs for breakfast." And thus, I find myself at home, some eggs boiling in the pan, a waxy bag of brioche in my hand, the spotteds lying outside in the sun on the rickety deck, and Thistle, as usual, at my feet, awaiting further instruction.

Yesterday I returned to (kundalini) yoga after a long respite, probably three or four weeks, so long in fact that I've forgotten when I last went. But I remembered why I go. And this plainly paints me as a member of a cult -- and I really don't care.  You go to yoga with a mind fogged up with worries. You breathe in, you breathe out, you stretch, you dance like a leprechaun on the balls of your feet while three small boys in front of you laugh and jig, you meditate on miracles and repeat the wahe guru and push the energy to the front of your forehead, the third eye point, and you sweat and then you walk out transformed, the worry diminished. Today every single muscle in my body is sore but I have a clarity I'd been missing. The sun is out, which is not unusual for California, and I vow not to miss another moment of this.

A wise man told me was trying to persuade me of the benefits of sleeping in a completely darkened room, without any light: no clock radios, no devices, no blue light from LED screens, etc. The health benefits are profound he said. (More here.) And so, last night, I removed all the light from the bedroom, closed the shutters, locked my laptop and phone in the bathroom, unswitched everything else and it's true, I slept a full six hours, a great triumph for an insomniac like me. But much of this success I attribute to the yoga earlier in the day. I will let you know how I fair tonight.

And one more thing: letting go of old emotional patterns. Maybe this is what you do: just let go. Breathe. Count to ten. Shower. Drink a glass of water. Walk in trees. Be in nature. Sing. Let go.

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