THE MYSORE MAGIC
I went again today to hear the chanting at the ashram before class.
When I arrived at the shala, Saraswati was on the steps, taking a breather. "Five minutes rest," she explained. "Only five minutes?" I asked. She works too hard - especially when you consider that she is nearly 67.
There were even fewer students in the waiting area, which means that people are leaving Mysore in droves, and those that remain are being given earlier starting times.
A guy who arrived on the same day and I were told to start coming at 6AM for self-practice, and at 4:45 for tomorrow's led primary series class.
There goes my social life.
There goes the chanting (although I can go after led practice days).
Actually I'm pleased. I prefer to practice early, eat, wash my clothes and take a morning nap before lunch.
I'm just generally pleased. While waiting to go into the shala, I caught of glimpse of Sharath's young son - who is too sweet. I was in the back of the lobby, waiting for the mat-space politics to play themselves out, when S told me to move closer to the door and go next. "No hiding," he said, and we all laughed.
During practice I worked hard in upward-facing dog, to open the middle back, and Warrior 1 and Prasarita C and Marichyasana A and C (hands off the back, arms straight) to open the shoulders. I also tried to use downward-facing dog to loosen the upper back, by moving the head towards the floor.
I held the backbends that come before Kapotasana a little longer than usual, and worked hard and each of them.
It paid off. On my second solo attempt at Kapotasana, my right fingertips touched something soft and strange. Then the left fingertips experienced a similar sensation. I was touching my toes! Without help. For the first time ever.
Then I heard Sharath: "Straight arms." And I did it, and he got the hands almost to the heels. Almost.
After coming up, I smiled broadly and told him "First time catching toes." There was no sensation in either arm.
S. said something like, "You take feet."
Coming, I said.
Because here, sometimes, anything seems possible.
There probably won't be any post for a couple of days, since I'll be at QE's villa in India's IT capital, Bangalore - which, strangely, is not yet wired for the internet