Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Yoga and Crisp

We had a pretty violent-sounding thunderstorm last night. I got home around 10:30 and the heavens burst forth with a torrential downpour shortly after that. I got into bed around 11:30 and a short time later the fun started. The lightning sounded like it was striking right behind my neighbor Mary Jean's house. She's across the street and has a small wooded area behind her house. I had visions of her house being hit. But it looks like nothing really has happened much. Not many downed branches. Everything is just very soggy.

Last night in yoga we did headstands. It was not hard. There were others in the class that had done them before. For those of us who hadn't, we lined up together on the other side of the room and received comprehensive, one-on-one instruction on proper positioning of hands, wrists and elbows. Then we basically just walked our toes up to our heads and flipped up. It's exhilarating to be upside-down like that. And if you are careful not to sink into your shoulders and put pressure on your head, you can stay up there for quite a bit. But the sweat really rolls off you!

After class the two teachers worked with me a bit on my downward dog. My left shoulder is not happy in that pose. As I extend my arms further out in front, I'm angling them down too much and then I get intense pressure and fatigue in that shoulder. First they had to diagnose the problem, then they said a whole bunch of stuff that basically just entered my brain and sat there incomprehensibly. I'm really counting on my teacher Liz remembering all that was said and then walking me through it more slowly in the coming weeks. And when I'm not so fatigued. That whole process was another sweat-fest as well. It's amazing how much your body works in something that looks so simple. I know many people think yoga is just a lot of stretching. But there is a lot of hard effort that goes into even the simplest poses. But you have to be inside the skin to really grasp it. It looks effortless on the outside most of the time.

After that the three of us (the two teachers and I) went out for a late supper to salad/soup/sandwich place called Crisp. Here is a write-up about it from Creative Loafing. Now I'm telling you, if I lived in the Elizabeth neighborhood I'd have a tough time staying away from there! I had the F.C.N. salad, which is Fruit, Cheese, Nuts. Walnuts, craisins, pears, bleu cheese and apple in some wonderful greens and then tossed in a roasted lemon vinaigrette. The server asked if I wanted the dressing tossed in or on the side. "Tossed in, but just a little bit," I told him. And he essentially squirted about 1 1/2 Tablespoons on this giant salad. That was a salad that I hated to see end!

Monday, July 20, 2009


I am generally the host of a few bruises. Pretty much all on my legs. But this one is really out of this world for me. And of course its' sheer size and obvious location (when it's summer and you are wearing tank tops in yoga class or short sleeves in jazz), cause many questions.

And there is no one-sentence explanation I can offer for it. Here's the shortest version I have:

I was hanging off a wooden footbridge on the way into the lake to retrieve my car key.



Mensa Boy and I watched this movie last night. It's the true story of the Bielski brothers and their efforts to stay alive during WWII. Farmers, they fled to the forest after finding their parents murdered on their farm.

When in the forest, they found other displaced Jews hiding out there and they all banded together to form a community. Eventually their numbers swelled into the hundreds and the Bielskis took care of them and also transformed them into a group of freedom fighters.

It's a good movie. It started out slow. I almost lost interest but I'm glad I hung in there.

It's been incredibly mild here the past few days. We were able to turn off the A/C and open our windows yesterday. Mensa Boy and I went to Landsford Canal and had a lunch and did a brief hike. It was a good day to be out.