Sunday, June 19, 2011

Moving on...

Fear conquered! Not too bad kiddos, not bad at all. Actually, it was really fucking awesome. Class turned into a mini flow in the Amansala restaurant followed by mango margaritas in the torrential downpour and kick ass conversation. Sadie is awesome and if you ever get a chance to take a class with her, go on retreat, or just hold some space with her take it. One unicorn down just a lifetime more to go!

And now on to do some traveling. Palenque, San Cristobal, Guatemala and Belize are on the horizon and I'm out for the next couple of weeks. I'll post a new playlist when I get back along with some tales or courage and heroism. Okay probably not but I'll think of something juicy for you! xo

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Getting over the fear...

One of my biggest fears in teaching yoga (yes there are a few) is that fateful day when my teacher Tiffany Cruikshank walks into one of my classes as a have ME teach them. The thought of it brings swarms of butterflies to my belly. I guess it is pretty foolish to think that in my travels and teaching I wouldn't come across some of my more distant teachers. Those teachers whose blogs I follow, videos I watch, talks I listen to. They're kind of like unicorns to me. I know they're out there prancing about with their manes and silvery horns, and I know I'll meet one someday, but you know...they're unicorns. I see photographs of these teachers, read this or that article, but I've never met or even been in the same room with most of them. And when I am I of course realize that they are just like me, a perpetual student, passionate about what they do and full of love.

The thought never crossed my mind that one day I might actually be face to face with one of these elusive creatures...until today. As the storm outside blew in I struggled with the sliding doors to let a rain lashed lady in. Once her hair blew out of her face I couldn't mistake those bangs and all black get up. Who else would wear all black in Mexico? Sadie Nardini, all smiles. Introductions were had and then the question...
Sadie, "Are you teaching tonight?"
"Yeah, for the last day of Bikini Boot Camp."
"Awesome! Can I come to class?"
"Of course!"
Cue me running away feeling like I want to vomit, explode, pee.

After about 5 minutes that feeling went away and was replaced by one of honor and gratitude. It's less of a star-struck attitude and more of a deep sense of gratitude and thanks to those, unbeknownst to them, who have influenced me. It's scary teaching those who have taught you most of what you know. I look at this as an opportunity to conquer another fear and grow as both student and teacher. Thank you universe.

Besides...what a fan-freaking-tastic way to end my stay here. Sadie has been an inspiration to my practice and my teaching. Tonight she flows with me and tomorrow I fly with her. I can't wait!!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The dangers of the wild...

Some real life pain and meditation happening in these parts. Our story goes starts with a little education and history lesson. Enter the Chechen tree and its little buddy tree the Chaca. The two generally grow within a few feet of one another which is a good thing since the Chechen tree is poisonous (relative of poison oak, ivy and sumac) and the Chaca provides the only remedy.

Mayan legend tells of two great warrior princes who were brothers of enormous strength and skill but of completely different nature. The younger brother, named Kinich, was sweet and tender and loved by all, while the elder brother, named Tizic, was a big stick in the mud who drew strength from the hate and anger nursed in his heart. Legend has it, they both fell in love (surprise!) with the beautiful Nicte-Ha. The brothers declared a battle to the death to see who she would choose.

The battle was long and gruesome, imagine if Robert Rodriguez remade Mel Gibson's Apocalypto. The Earth was torn and the Heavens went into hiding. Eventually both brothers died in each other’s arms. In the afterlife, they begged the gods for forgiveness, and a chance to return to the world of the living and see their beloved Nicte-Ha once more.

The gods granted their wish and Tizic was reborn as the Chechen tree, which seeps black poison from its branches (seriously) and burns anyone who touches it, and Kinich was reborn as the Chaca tree, whose soothing nectar neutralizes Chechen’s venom.

Anyhow, the point of all this is to show you our little run in with Chechen. Ben, helping the guys dig out some cisterns ended up chopping the roots of the aforementioned Chechen tree. Unbeknownst to everybody the black sap began to mix with the sand surrounding the cisterns and they continued to dig. Ultimately our dear, sweet Benjamin ended up covered in venom tainted sand. Here's a little of the healing process...

Calamine to draw out the icky stuff

Boiled Chaca leaves and bark tincture help soothe the fiery itch

Really getting down to business with straight Chaca leaves pureed with a little water. This my friends is the ticket!!!