Monday, March 16, 2009


Part II of my most recent trip to Mysore is on the Yoga Chicago website.

Here's an excerpt:

Tonight I had a scooter accident when a man on a motorcycle sideswiped me and three other vehicles. The force was so great it knocked off my ankle bracelets. Bystanders pulled the scooter off of me, and asked if I was OK. The ankle was bloody, the elbow was throbbing and blood was seeping through the knee of my baggy salwaar pants.

One by one everyone else got up and left, and I drove to the hospital where I had been treated for a major gastrointestinal problem and had my nose pierced on my first trip. After a long wait, I was on the same examining table I'd been on back in 2002.

The nurse and her assistants crowded around me, wanting to know what happened. They were all quite concerned. One of them wanted to know if I had any foreign coins (it never fails).

As they cleaned the wounds, I became concerned about the cotton balls, which were shriveled and gray. "Are those new?" I asked. Yes, yes.

After the wounds were covered, an older woman raised a needle and said, “Injection.”

"Where?" I asked. "Backside?" I was joking.

But sure enough, they wanted me to turn over onto my stomach. I was so out-of-it I didn't even notice (or ask) if the needle was new.

Outside, my friend Ammu’s employee, Dungar, accompanied me to the pharmacy and said that Ammu's mother wanted to see me.

Ammu's mother made me lie down on the couch, where I iced my leg. One by one, people came in and asked me what happened. Between my limited Kannada and their limited English (and many gestures), we pieced together the story.

Then Ammu's mother brought out some food and insisted that I eat.

And the heart melted, as I thought about my own long-gone mother and how she used to tend to me after my many bicycle crashes.

And I thought about the idea of "I, me and mine" that we're trying to get away from in yoga, and how at that moment Ammu's mother was not just his mother but also my mother and everyone's mother, and I was beyond grateful. To be taken care of that sweetly, without reservation, so far from home, is the greatest gift.

Read the rest of the story here - and see if you can discern what really went down on this most recent trip....

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad that you had the mom experience. I think that these kind of moments happen when you are open to them.

    And yes! People are like this also, although you never see it in the news.