Yes, yoga at 6:30.
The instructor told me it was at 6:30 on Saturday, and I said, “Oh, well, that’s okay – I can do it on Sunday instead.” He kind of gave me a funny look and said, “Well, it’s at 6:30 on Sunday, too.” He even offered to wake me up for it. (Yes, they will wake you up for your lessons and/or meals here if you ask. It’s a weird sort of hostel, right?)
I decided to try it, though. That’s why I’m here, right? A personal retreat? A journey of some sort? Whatever.
On the plus side, the yoga class was nice and relaxing, and I finally figured out why I couldn’t see the guy’s junk through his almost but not quite opaque white harem pants. He wears tighty-whities. The band showed while he was doing poses. Not that I’d been trying to see his junk, mind you. I was just curious about it because I couldn’t figure out how he’d been hiding it with those pants on. (How does it feel, men? Knowing people are looking at you when you’re wearing “provocative” clothing? Eh?)
Anyway, the funniest part of yoga was when the teacher apparently got flustered. I’m not sure why he did, but he was talking about a pose and how it helped the body by producing more insulin. Then he corrected himself – “Is it insulin or penicillin? No, wait, it’s insulin.” Whew. Cause I’m allergic to penicillin, and if yoga could make my body produce it, maybe I shouldn’t be doing it.
We went straight from yoga to mantras and breakfast. At least three people had their cell phones out during the mantras. Okay, I get it, maybe you have something super important going on. But during mantras? Really? I’ve made it a point to leave my cell phone in my room unless I’m using it as a hot spot so I can log in or if I’m going for a walk around the property. Then I take it with me so I can take pictures, or just in case something happens, like falling into a well. It could happen.
Breakfast was toast with jellies and fresh fruit all cut up. And, of course, chai tea. Super yummy.
The once-was-a-silent-retreat girl told one of the hosts that “this toast is the bomb.” He just smiled and nodded, but part of me had to wonder – is it really a compliment to tell someone who’s committed to non-violence that their food is “the bomb”?
And the urge to check Facebook came back. People kept tagging me. I think I got tagged three times in a matter of hours. But I held strong. I resisted. I even texted someone who I know would have preferred a FB message because I didn’t want to be on FB in any way. Even when I wasn’t really trying to check FB, my finger would move on my phone, taking me to the screen where FB resided. Muscle memory, maybe. I had to keep closing it, moving on. Moving away.
So I took a nice two mile walk around the property. It was clear, sunny, and the fields and ponds were super pretty to look up. I snapped pictures, enjoyed myself, and then came back to take a shower and get to work on my writing and artwork.
Taking a shower.
I had to take it in my less favorite bathroom. (There are two. One is “better” even though they’re exactly the same. Don’t you judge me.)
When I got here and one of the hosts was showing me around, he told me that while sometimes the water pressure can get wonky if too many people are using water at the same time, there’s never really been a problem with the hot water.
I guess he never actually took a hot shower then, because if he thought they had no problems with hot water, he and I have very different definitions of what is considered not a problem.
I twisted the handle to get the shower to come on. It did. Ice cold water. And the handle came off in my hand. I tried to somehow wrangle it back on and not get myself soaked in the cold, but it was fighting back. It was at that moment that I figured out why the matt outside the shower was soaked. Clearly, I had not been the only person to run into that issue.
I got it back on. Yay!
Not that it really fixed much. The water refused to stay constant. It varied from “holy crap there is actual ice coming out and pelting my flesh!” to “lava! lava!”
When it got cold, I tried to brave my way through it.
But after soaping up completely, all the heat disappeared. Or maybe it’s that the water is haunted, and a ghost was in. Whatever the reason, when I tried to turn it more towards hot to see if that would help, the handle came off in my hand. Again.
Okay. I would just try to get the soap off, and then get out. In a hurry.
Pretend you’re jumping into a cold pool, I told myself as I forced myself under the cold spray.
Then I remembered how much I hated cold pools.
Eventually, the heat started coming back, and I managed to get the soap washed off between the lukewarm and molten stages.
And lest you think that it was only getting cold because I was taking too long a shower, nope. Because we’d hit 14 people sharing two bathrooms, I was limiting myself to a ten minute shower.
The food here has been great so far. I’m really getting into all the vegetarian meals. They’re simple, but really good. To be fair, there are three or four people preparing them, so it probably doesn’t take too much effort from any one of them, but you can tell that they’re trying to make it good. And it is. Most of their food comes from local farms, and the milk in the chai tea is local raw milk. So yummy. They even grow their own herbs and some vegetables.
Then I heard a guest talking to one of the hosts. He was discussing how to tell the difference between “deadly hemlock” and carrots.
There were carrots in our lunch. At least, I think they were carrots. I hope they were carrots.
After that, the afternoon was relaxed – chai at 3 p.m. Mantras at 6:30. Dinner at 7. Bedtime (for most people) at 10 p.m. Except…well, that’s for part two.