I have made it to South India. Justin and i spent time in the wild city of Bangalore where the roads erupt into 15 lanes of traffic complete with dogs, cows, motorbikes, rickshaws, taxis, buses, cars, babies, you name it- it’s moving- and at high speeds in all directions. I spent several hours in the saree district finessing the finest silks laden in jewels. I was sat down and shown showcase after showcase of one-of-a-kind hand woven, hand beaded, intricate pieces of wearable art- from the way they are made to the multitude of ways the are tied. Each one was wrapped me so perfectly, folded in a perfect bkend oc science and art. The women of India are equally as intrigued by me as I am of them. We all steal glances -returned with sweet smiles, cheeky looks, and head bobbles. Mutual admiration society in full effect!
We find busy food stalls and my fingers become an extension of my tastebuds as I scoop up channah masala with fresh puri and have as many dosas as I can possibly eat in 24 hours. All washed down with chai- every meal, every thought, every corner – chai, chai, chai!
We then took a sleeper train to Hampi. Hampi is a magical and ancient village full of 16th century temples, gypsies, amazing boulders strewn across the landscape teetering in unrealistic ways. Nature truly is the greatest abstractionist. I’m also constantly impressed by the timelessness of human innovation. The intricacy of the temples, the roads, the sculptures, the society that existed in a different time of technology makes a huge impact on me. I learned all about Krishnadeviraya and fell into a deep fascination with the unfolding history of India.
I am currently attending an Odissi dance program mixed with tantric yoga in south Goa over the mountain along the sea side.
I am honing in on the art of being a healthy traveler. Enjoying my time exploring this world as well as the inner journey of exploring myself and finding the harmony in all things. India is a magical place but it is not such an easy place to get along ( confusion, corruption, disease, politics, harsh weather harsh sun, etc) but if you surrender and release your expectations into the flow- the rest will follow.
Currently I’m on Galgibaga Beach. There are few westerners here and each one’s absence is replaced three-fold with INCREDIBLE wildlife. Dogs and cows lazily mill through every city and village- but in this very far flung village woven into an even further out coast there is the most amazing array of birds. Huge crows, hawks with at least a 3 ft wingspan riding the warm thermals coming off the Arabian sea. Bright green and blue parakeets glittering and flipping around, these lil birds slightly bigger than a hummingbird with the coloring of a peacock darting here and there, roosters, egrets, gulls, and a ton
More that I don’t even
Know how to dichotimize. Even a short five minute walk yields spectacular sightings.
Life and death is also much more in your face. I’ve seen several animals killed with my own eyes in the past few weeks. I saw one monkey brutally attack and kill another and then drag off the body, I saw a dog trot by with the bottom half of a very large Doberman colored creature hanging from it’s mouth, a hawk dropped a rodent 10 ft from me on the road from about 25 ft and then 2 cars immediately ran it over, even the 5 week old puppy at our ashram returned home completely missing his back paw and his leg is now limp. India is not necessarily an easy place- but it us however real and in your face.
I have learned so much in the past few weeks about a multitude of topics. The most fascinating and still unravelling is tattered threads of Indias rich past and history- nearly wiped out during the 3 centuries of British rule and the intriguing and laborious duty of uncovering and re-establishing their rich heritage.
I have been dancing 5-7 hours a day and intensively studying classical Indian Temple dance – Odissi- history, music theory, and technique. This devotional dance dates back to 1 B.c. – that’s over 2000 years ago!!! Such a beautiful and intricate practice.
May each of you be enriching your lives in some way today and enjoying your personal freedom, health, and happiness.
are you at Shri Kali Ashram?!