Writer’s block

My computer is back relatively unscathed, yay! The only snags: when I first went on the internet, the ‘recently opened’ tabs were mostly porn (hope you had a good evening, Mr Ragu); the keyboard seems to have become Indian in its format; and Mr Ragu didn’t save any of my music files, so my itunes was sadly empty. Still, the rest of my files were there, phew.

Meanwhile, all in Mysore is ticking along much as before, so what to say? Um…

As you can imagine, not much happens here apart from a whole lot of yoga, which poses an interesting challenge for a blogger – what on earth to write about? I could take you through my practice in ad nauseum detail each day, which would actually give you a good indication of what life is like here as we do tend to do that with each other; probably the most asked question amongst the Mysore westerners is, ‘How was your practice today?’. And, as well as this being the local default polite chit-chat opener (the equivalent back home would be, ‘Chilly/warm/miserable/foggy today, isn’t it?’) it is also a genuine question – we actually want to know the answer.

Why? Because yoga is the dominant pulse that punctuates our days. We live it, breathe it, talk about it, joke about it, dream about it, begin the day with it, fit our sleeping and eating patterns around it. So it would be rather weird if we didn’t passionately care about it too. We want to know how x’s ganglion swelling is doing, whether x felt that chocolate brownie she had last night in her practice this morning, whether 10 spirulina tablets make more of a difference than 5 when jumping through, whether x finally managed to drop back today etc, etc. (Aside – this must seem like a weird nightmare for non-yogis [and reluctant yogis… ;)] who accidentally land in Gokulum or Lakshimapurum and have to live alongside the yogis and their strange behaviour.)

Around here, conversations that don’t stray onto the topic of yoga at least once are rare indeed; words like ‘pranayama’, ‘mindful’ and ‘vegan’ are commonplace in any discussion; people will invariably be wearing at least one piece of yoga attire at any time; in-depth discussions of gruesome internal cleansing processes are often heard at the dinner-table (you seriously don’t want to know); and parties breaking up beyond 9pm is highly unusual behaviour.

So, I guess what I’m saying is that you shouldn’t expect dramatic tales of high-octane thrills in this blog. Unlike Chris’s adventures (you can check out his new fb page at www.facebook.com/steppingthroughindia), where there will be new horizons and fresh visual stimulation each day, this blog, whilst I’m in Mysore, is more about the inward adventure; the no less intriguing and beautiful journey of the mind. I love the idea that, by keeping external circumstances more or less the same each day, it becomes easier to tune into the changes that are happening internally and to document my attempts to tame the crazy, hair-pin prevarications of the intellect, mind and emotions. I love all that stuff.

But, in fear of leaving you without some exciting ‘news’ from Mysore, here’s my list of the top five events that have occurred since I last posted. Can you handle the pace?!

  1. We watched hundreds of huge fruit bats emerge over a lake at dusk the other night.
  2. We found a place to eat absolutely gorgeous lightly battered, freshly fried fish (I know, not good for my vegetarian credentials, but frankly I needed the protein) – and the shop is shaped like a giant fish – amazing.
  3. Still no news from the main shala and still feeling ambivalent about this.
  4. We finally found the mysterious and much celebrated Lakshimapurum ‘bakery man’ hidden down a side-street and bagged ourselves his last millet loaf of the week.
  5. We just drank a beer (now this IS exciting, on the Mysore scale of things).

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