This weekend was a big test of my burgeoning Ashtanga skills.
I’m a mere 14 days into mysore practice and I’ve been slowly building up my repertoire of asanas. The trick is remembering all the postures in the correct order without having to refer to the handy dandy cheat sheet my studio provides for new students. While I can usually get by without the sheet, I also have the security of being in a studio with my ever-watchful teacher keeping a close eye on my progress and making small corrections here and there. In other words, my location has been my security blanket.
However, we spent this weekend camping, which was the perfect opportunity to put my new Ashtanga knowledge to the test. I laid out my mat in a relatively flat spot at the edge of our camping site and started my Sun Salutations, sans cheat sheet. It was actually pretty nice to be detached from those small elements of security, and I spent most of my practice in a much more mindful and intentional place. Was my practice perfect? Um, no. But when is it ever perfect?
I ended each of my two camping Ashtanga sessions feeling satisfied and kinda proud of my mini-accomplishment. I didn’t even mind the stares from the neighboring campsites. Interestingly, I saw someone else practice Ashtanga on a public pier very close to our campsite. I only watched him for a minute or two, but I recognized the sequence right away. I wanted to cheer for him or go say hi or something, but that would have been awkward. Plus, maybe he was practicing from a more mindful place that day. Either that or he had hidden his cheat sheet very carefully.
Two more weeks of mysore to go…