Thursday, November 20, 2008

Post training reflection

Four days have come and gone since training has ended. I was lucky enough to have my parents and Aunt come down for my graduation. My Auntie Shirley did every single class with us since she arrived, fourteen classes in nine days. She did her first double ever here and knocked out every single posture, what a rock star. My parents did their very first Bikram class, they were lucky enough to have it with Bikram on our very last class of training, and they both lived to tell about it, talk about rock stars!
I went to the make up class by choice on Saturday with Nikki and Auntie Shirley. My body was loving doing the yoga every day so going four or five days with out it will be kind of weird. I know weird is a funny way to describe it but I think that sums it up. I don’t think my body will crave it, it has been sending me signals this week that it is ready for a break.
Sunday was the day the majority of students now teachers were checking out and going home, my room mate included. I spent Sunday lounging around and enjoying my family time, that’s hard to come by these days. After breakfast I shoved all my stuff into my suitcases and switched into Auntie Shirley's room. Eleni’s flight wasn’t until the afternoon so we took our time packing up and getting ready. We left all our unopened food, plastic containers, and cutlery for Maria, our maid who has made the stay as comfortable as possible for us during our stay. It felt so surreal to take one more glance at the room before saying good bye and closing the door behind me.
It was nice not have to think about getting laundry done, going to wal-mart or fitting in a nap. It was Damien’s last night here so we all went for supper. We also took some posture photo’s by the ocean because who knows when either of us will have that opportunity again. Damien also said good bye to his mat in style, releasing it into the ocean. Okay he didn’t leave it there but he tossed into the ocean, I bet that felt good.
Monday was sight seeing day. We hired Alejandro, a cabbie we met one night after eating at Costa Nostra. He took us (me, Mom, Dad, and Auntie Shirley) around Acapulco for the day. We saw the oldest church in Acapulco, the cliff divers, shopped at the mall, stopped at the church at the top of the hill where all the well to do people live and we ended the day with swimming with the dolphins. When we got back I cooked my last gourmet Italian pasta rice cooker meal in Acapulco. Tuesday became a day to enjoy the sun.
Now I sit here at the airport waiting to board the plane. I thought I would miss training more than I do right now. I think it will take a little time for it all to sink in once I get home. I think staying a couple days after training is exactly what a person should do. It gave me a little adjustment time to get used to not having a schedule or seeing a yogi around every corner. My last class was the make up class so that was a baby step into getting back into the room with a mere 40 people. I am actually excited to get into the hot room at home, the people there are so supportive.
The weekend before week nine I was getting a little sad thinking that it was coming to an end. We were told not to even worry about week nine, not to even think about it. When week nine started it sure wasn’t what I was expecting, especially after being told not to worry about it. There was a rumor going around that the chakra doctor had cancelled. One trainee asked the staff straight out if she was coming and once again we were given the run around, saying they didn’t know. The next day we were put into the hot room for an extra three hours to do three mock classes, granted the heat wasn’t on but regardless, we were all sweating and it drained us.
There were a lot of people that began to get irritated and to the point of anger by Tuesday night moving into Wednesday afternoon. I was a little more on the annoyed side, annoyed at being kept in the dark about everything, annoyed at the disorganization and annoyed that week ninewas so frusterating. The mood took a 360 degree angle turn Wednesday afternoon when Bikram walked in and introduced Craig. In a matter of minutes the man was able to relieve some of the anxiety that was created in the last two days. Some how he was also able to capture our attention for the entire three hours he lectured for that day and the following afternoon.
If I could have changed one thing in the last week I wish Craig would have been here for at least all of week nine. There is so much to learn from him and I felt like it was just the tip of the ice berg by only having him for a couple days. Having him here seemed to be the missing piece of the puzzle as he was able to connect all the dots for me.
By the end of the week I was no longer sad thinking about it all ending. I tried to enjoy every single breath and absorb everything I could in the last moments with my new Bikram family. I started to think about all the doors this opportunity has opened for me. I am also really glad that my parents came down to share this experience with me as well. When I told them I was going to training they didn’t try to stop me, they questioned why it had to be for two months and in Mexico. When I told them there was a graduation they asked when and booked their flights the following day.
At graduation and in the last class, Bikram talked dircectly to the families telling them how lucky we are, how they probably don’t even recognize us anymore. In the last couple days my parents started asking me questions about Bikram himself, teaching, and the yoga. By them asking me questions gives me the signal that they care, they are interested and want to know more, and that mean so much to me. I think having them come here for a couple days also helped me to better adjust to the coming out of the bubble.
I talked to some people about what they are going to miss when training is over. Some common answers have been:
'Getting my bed made every day’- I never really thought about this because I always felt bad for the maids. They came in, cleaned and did the same thing every single day. I felt bad because we would come back from class and mess up the neat way they arranged our stuff in the shower, dirty the cup they just cleaned, and use the towel they just folded. I was told to get used to it, it’s their job, but its hard to get used to when you are someone who does everything for yourself.

Practicing twice a day- I actually think that is something I can agree with. My body was very much enjoying and eating up the doubles. My body defintely needs a little break for a couple days but I know it will crave it daily.

Having a schedule- I am not usually one that likes to be told what to do, so having a schedule you would think would be hard for me. I actually liked having a schedule, it gave me a purpose and reason to be somewhere. On those days when we got an extra hour before lecture was nice, though I would sit in my room and think, ‘now what, so much extra time?’

Their room mate- As far as Eleni and I go; we didn’t ask to be put together but it worked out that way I believe for a reason. We come from the same studio and talked about room mates before we left but both decided to leave it up to the universe. We got put together and had the option of talking to the staff and seeing if we could switch rooms. We decided to leave it the way it was because who knows what would happen if we asked to be switched plus our schedules meshed so well together. We woke up in the morning at the same time, enough time to eat breakfast, change and get to class; perfect. After the yoga classes, Eleni would head straight up to the room to shower and get ready and I would head to the pool for my salt water swim. By the time I got back to the room, the shower was waiting for me. We went for lunch together (until the last week when Eleni got tired of the food). Supper was easy, whether we made pasta together or ordered room service, we normally ate together in the room, studied dialogue or played on our computers. We would also do our shuttle rides and shopping together on the weekends. The only thing we did not do together was our dialogue, which worked out perfectly okay. I still like to bug her about being a perfectionist, I gave up on that after by little cry at balancing stick.
We trusted each other and were able to vent to each other knowing it would stay between us. I don’t think there was a ever a moment when we completely lost it on each other either. We never yelled or threw things at each others, lol, which I heard can happen. I think we both learned from each other and I think it will continue as we head back to the same studio. If we got one thing out of this, a least we know we can travel together, we all need a good travel partner. Oh and I can’t forget to mention the kicker; neither of us snored so that was glorious.

Practicing with 300 people- I think whoever denies they are going to miss practicing with that many people is crazy. The energy is unbelievable, even on those days when you want to strangle the person next to you for lying down the entire class. One thing I have learnt from practicing with this many people is you never know what is going on with someone. You might be practicing beside someone who was up puking all night or has had diaherra for the last two weeks, but are still pushing through the poses. They aren’t stealing your energy like I used to think. I realized those were the days they needed me, those are the days I sent them my love because tomorrow it might be me, you never know. To sum it up, YES, I will absoletly miss practicing with 300 plus people.

Bikram- This is completely obvious, and he has told us since day one that for the first time in our lives we will miss someone and something; him. The guy can be a little in your face at times, but that is him, and I love it, bring it on. On the last night he lectured when he was just sitting there telling us stories, I leaned over to Eleni and said, “I could listen to him all night until class starts”. There was not one night I fell asleep when he was talking about his life and his stories (watching the Bollywood movies was a whole different story). I plan to return to future trainings and stay connected with Bikram, so the withdrawl shouldn’t last too long, but I know it’s never the same.

Now here is my list of things I will not miss:
10) Atlantis (lecture room) chairs
9) Not feeling safe in my home of two months (once the break-ins started)
8) Shopping at Wal-mart
7) Having to get a taxi/shuttle every time I want to go somewheres
6) Filling up the britta three times a day
5) Getting locked out of my room because the door battery died
4) Worrying about ants/being bitten in my bed
3) Mexico
2) Not knowing what will happen next
1) Chula Vista

I am not really out of the bubble yet so I can’t quite yet reflect on my entire experience, nor do I want to. I hope it takes years for me understand exactly what went on. I am excited to grow and see what the future holds as I have learnt a ton of things about myself. In these nine weeks I have begun to wake up all those sleepy, lazy brain cells, the ones I never knew I had, the ones Bikram talks about. I remember when I was 19 and I told a friend, “I know exactly who I am right now." HA, if only I had heard Bikram’s four pivotal words back them…"YOU HAVE NO IDEA!" (though I probably would have rolled my eyes). The two things I have learned throughout this entire experience is: Don’t anticipate anything and just smile.
With that I leave you with this Bikram quote:

‘When good comes in your life,
don’t get excited and jump up and down like monkey, because bad is coming very soon.
When bad comes in your life,
fight through it, be happy, put a smile on your face because good is coming.
That is life’


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Graduation Day

I woke up this morning for the nine o’clock makeup class. I did not have a make up, nor have I had one all training; just had to throw that in there. Actually to add to that I didn't miss one sign in the entire training. I decided to go practice with Nikki and Zia one more time while in Mexico. This time we were able to practice beside each other so that was nice. Diane taught and it was a nice relaxed class with little heat and humidity. Diane made some corrections to Auntie Shirley which she said totally helped her practice and focus.
After class I met Mom, Dad and Zia for lunch at Chula Vista. After lunch I went and took a ten minute nap before Eleni walked in with her toes and hair done, ready for the night to begin. We got ready and made our way down to the Atlantis room where the Graduation ceremony was going to be held.
Senior teacher Jim Kallet opened the ceremony with a speech from Bishnu Ghosh, Bikram’s guru, recorded in his own voice before he passed away. Craig was the master of ceremonies and seemed at home up there. Rajashree came up and welcomed us all to the Bikram family. As did principal teacher of the college Emmy, said a few encouraging words to us as well. They gave out some special awards that were chosen by the staff; Bulldog determination, Bengal tiger strength, yogini, Yogi, best dialogue, best anatomy score and valedictorian. It was so neat to see Vincent from Brooklyn crying as he accepted his award for Bulldog determination.
My two month next door neighbour Sheila won the Bengal Tiger Strength award. This lady is one tough cookie; she told me she thinks she received 20 IV’s in the first six weeks here. She was constantly kept up all night puking or getting an IV. In week seven she decided to go home and take care of herself. When Bikram came back in week eight he requested that she return and finish with her class mates. She jumped on the next available flight and joined us for our last couple weeks, which she did with such grace. The entire time she was sick you couldn’t tell because she always had a little smile on her face, so humble. To this day they still don’t know what is wrong with her, but she’s Canadian so she’ll be in good hands when she gets home.
Rajashree with the help of her daughter acknowledged the staff and senior teachers who were here throughout training. Dr. Tom who is a part of our graduating class gave a little speech. He is a retired Oncologist, which is a doctor that specialized with cancer patients. He talked about his focus for the future and hope of combining Bikram yoga with the Medicine education. Ben was our valedictorian; he gave a little speech talking about his experience during the triple class day which summed up our whole experience here.
Bikram then came on stage and give us his graduation speech. He talked about his classy white suit and fancy hat that he is famous for. He said he got it made a couple weeks ago when he was in India just for us. He talked to our families about everything we were put through while we were here. He summed up how this experience will change our lives forever and that our family probably didn’t even recognize us when they arrived here. He talked about the yoga and how we all came to be there in that moment and why. After he finished his speech, the handing out of the certificates began. It was great to see everyone dressed up and looking so fine. I thoroughly enjoyed checking everyone out and sitting with my posture clinic group again.
After the certificates were handed out, there was dinner waiting for us, a buffet roast beef dinner served outside. The place where the dinner was being held was absolutely beautiful the way they had it set up. We are in a beautiful place so it didn’t need much help from the tables and chairs that were graced with white table linens. There were three buffet lines on the outside and the bar at the one end. After dinner everyone mingled for a bit than headed to lobby bar which we’ve seen in passing over the last 60 days. It was more of a social gathering to say our last good byes and congratulations one more time. Some people headed out to go dancing but not this yogini. It was a nice chill nice to end of a great training and a great experience.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The last day

Rajashree taught the last morning class of training. It would have been Bikram’s Dad’s 100th birthday today so we did a moment of silence for him at the end of class. Monali was very sad today and said she couldn’t smile all day because she just thinks about him. The class was good and at a ‘normal’ Bikram room temperature. I had my strong New Mexico girl Noel beside me today, for some reason over the last two weeks we keep finding ourselves beside each other. So today we energized our way through the entire thing.
I met Mom, Dad, and Auntie Shirley for lunch. After lunch all the trainees made their way to the lecture hall. Today the afternoon lecture ended up being a free forum. Rajashree, Emmy, and Craig were on stage and we were allowed to ask them any questions we wanted. After about an hour of that Rajashree asked students to come up and tell their story. Over twenty students went on stage with these amazing inspirational stories of how Bikram yoga has saved or changed their life. I have mentioned before that I love to hear these stories, and when four o’clock rolled around I was not ready to leave yet. I could have sat there all day and listened to the stories.
It's so easy to judge someone and turn your nose up at someone; sooo easy, but you never know what someone has faced in their life. People who shouldn’t be alive, have one kidney, addicted, spinal problems, abuse, depression, multiple operations, etc surround us every day and you never know it. I use to be an expert at judging people, thinking I knew everything about them by the way they walked, talked or smiled. It is so easy to find things wrong with someone else when you can’t even look at your own eyes in mirror. If I have learnt one thing over this time here it is to let people be who they are, treat them like a human being. Though I am still a huge believer in first impressions.
After lecture we quickly made our way back to our rooms to get ready for our last class as a teacher trainee. Me, Damian and Eleni set up right in front of the podium, side by side. I walked to the back of the room to put my stuff away and there was Mom and Dad dressed in yoga gear, standing on a mat with a bottle of water. They were going to try their first ever Bikram yoga class. Wow, talk about an experience, the energy in there was unreal and the room was so loud with all the chit chat. I was so excited to see Mom and Dad, they looked so cute and excited.
“Check check 1 2 3 4 check, everyone on the line please”, Bikram walked in and it was go time. I felt like an elastic band in there tonight. Everyone was working together and I just did the yoga and it was amazing. I got my first correction ever from Bikram in balancing stick; “Miss Glasses. Miss glasses, head up. Yes, now you are T, loooook at thaaaat”.
At toe stand Bikram decided to go the washroom and told us all to hold the posture until he got back, yah that didn’t last. Then at stretching posture he started to walk around and stand on people’s backs. He was giving out numbers to people who could touch their head to their toes. He was enjoying it way to much as he did various poses; statue of liberty, flex, cowboy, world, etc, it was very entertaining to say the least. He stood on about ten backs which surpassed into the 800’s for head to feet touching. I think at the very first training over ten years ago was when he started countingm though it is much more common now but the counting still continues. To top it off Mom and Dad made it through their very first Bikram yoga class, how lucky are they to have Bikram teach it.
After class we rushed to shower and change beccause we were told to meet in the lecture hall at 7:30 for snacks provided by Bikram. We did just that and the snack turned out to be pizza, which was fabulous. At 8:30 our guests and teachers started to arrive for the talent show. The talent show started at 9:00 and everyone was just a buzzing, waiting in anticipation.
A little after 9:00, the lights went down and the show began. Abigaliah, JC, and Isaac were the mc’s for the evening. They made the entire show and I can’t even begin to explain how completely hilarious they were. They had inside jokes that only us trainee’s would understand and appreciate. They thanked the teachers in such a way that was funny yet totally sincere and appreciative at the same time. The performers were beyond amazing from poetry, dancing, singing, musical instruments, and skits. Having a talent show is such a great idea, it gives a little glimpse into people’s other world outside of the yoga. At the end, Bikram’s daughter came up and did a stomach muscle example with a few helpers (JC and Dominique). The end of the night was topped off with a slide show that Hillary and Cristine put together from pictures they had compiled throughout the nine weeks. They put it to music and just totally capped off the evening, it was great. At the end of the slideshow Todd built onto that by handing out the year books and thanking each of the pivotal staff one by one.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Last night before I went to bed I took some more pepto bismal. Praise the pink liquid because it worked and I slept like a baby, oh my gosh I was out cold until the alarm went off. Without even thinking I had my usual routine of having cereal for breakfast. The girls next door who went through the same thing a couple weeks ago went to see the doctor when they were sick. The doctor told them not to eat dairy or fruit while their stomach hurt. I didn’t realize what I did until the milk was digested and it kind of hurt, not as bad as yesterday though.
This morning’s class was taught by Rajashree, that was a nice surprise. We were all anticipating who would teach this mornings class. We already know who will teach the remaining three classes. It was nice to see and have her, man she knows how to kick our butts, actaully I kicked my own ass but none the less it was a really great class.
After lunch we had to all meet in the yoga room. Some of the teachers, along with Bikram and Emmy demonstrated the advanced series for us. They did the demonstration in 80 minutes, a class which is usually a two hour class. After the demonstration we all met back in the lecture hall to go over some last minute graduation stuff.
Evening class was taught by Craig. I worked my butt off and it was awesome. I am feeling really strong today now that my energy is not being spent on trying to feel better.
After class, after savasana today Auntie Shirley was getting up and Diane, one of the senior teachers poked her head in the door. She shouted at her "You are a rock star!" to which Zia just said thanks. Diane told her she has been keeping her eye on her and she has been rocking it all out and is totally impressed. That's my Zia the rock star! The pic is me, Zia, and Nikki before class.
The routine with Auntie Shirley has been nice, she comes and does the AM class, then we meet for lunch at 11:30am. When lunch is finished she heads to the pool and I head to lecture. Then I see her again at the PM class. After class she comes to my room for supper around 7:30 to 8pm. After supper she usually comes to the lecture (last night she had a date with her book). She is a trooper though because she stayed up on Tuesday with us until 2am watching movies in the lecture hall, bless her.
Bikram lectured for the last time tonight, he talked about the warm up breathing exercise. After that he linked it all together with a bunch of breathing he learnt from his guru in India. After hislecture we did a deep breathing meditation that he said is his countries (India) gift to us through him. It was a form of deep breathing that we did for about seven minutes. When we were all finished you could feel the calming energy in the room, it was so neat. That lasted until one student asked Bikram if he would visit their studio next week when he is in town. You could feel the energy take a complete nose dive and feel everyone rolling their eyes as soon as the words came out. Well it was nice while it lasted.
We got dismissed at midnight. When I was leaving the lecture hall my parents were standing at the back with Auntie Shirley. It was so nice to see them and give them a big hug. They hadn’t even gone to their room yet, Auntie ushered them right to the Atlantis hall where we were.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Craig and Cramps

Today’s entry will probably be very short; I don’t have the energy nor the brain power right now. I think I only got two hours of sleep on the whole last night. I mentioned yesterday that I had stomach pains during the movie and when I got back to the room they got worse. I lied in bed in the fetal position for about two hours because it hurt so much, it felt like someone was inside my stomach using a carrot grater on my insides. My stomach was constantly cramping, not the actual stomach muscles but it felt like my organs were cramping. At about 4am I went to the bathroom and puked my guts out, I was so tired that I actually fell asleep with my head on the toilet seat. I woke up around 6:30 to a cramp in my stomach again, I puked again and then I had to use the toilet the proper way. Sorry to be so graphic but this is what you get when you tune in. After that I made my way to my bed and shut my eyes for 45 minutes before the alarm went off.
My stomach was cramping so much I couldn’t even stand up straight. Eleni instantly knew something was wrong. Good thing the girl sleeps with ear plugs in and didn’t have to go the bathroom in the middle of the night when I was sleeping there. I got ready for class and I don’t know how I made it there, because I had to stop every 12 steps and crouch in pain. It hurt so much it actually brought me to tears by the time I got to the elevator. I have no idea what brought this on.
I was talking to another girl at lunch that felt the same way last week and she thinks she had a virus. She went to eat the week before and had pop with ice; it took her down all last week. She had to take some prescribed meds that she brought with her before it got better.
When I got to the yoga room, Eleni went told Auntie Shirley what was going on. As soon as I saw her I started to cry, I was in so much pain. She suggested I talk to the nurse so I went to find a spot in the back of the room first for my mat. When I was putting my mat down my cramps hit again and I crumbled to the ground on my knees and started shaking. Upkar who was right in front of me instantly grabbed me and helped me out of the room to talk to the nurse.
The nurse wanted me to go see the doctor, a visit that would have cost $200 US. Me being stubborn said no, let's see what happens. She then told me she wanted me to sit out class, to which I shook my head no. She was worried that I didn't have enough electrolytes to get through class. I asked her if I would have a make up class and she said more than likely but don’t think about that. There were rumors that the makeup is 6am on Friday; thanks but no thanks. I told her I would take it easy and do class.
I did every posture, not to the best of my ability but I attempted everything. Whenever I would do a forward bend my stomach would cramp and I would crumble to my knees. So I took it easy and did what I could but I did not push myself. Oh and by the way, Emmy taught class, she is baaaaaack.
Lunch took me about an hour to eat because it was a very slow process. My stomach was still going in and out of cramping but I made it through. After lunch it was back to the lecture hall. Bikram came down and he introduced us to Craig Valleni (?). Craig has been the teacher training on site coordinator for the past like 15 years, now he is travelling around the world doing lectures/seminars for Bikram. Bikram handed us over to him until the end of training, so cool, I have heard so much about him.
Craig lectured for the entire three hours about using the dialogue and mostly about being a teacher. He has such a neat way of explaining things, using these parallels and real like situations to explain what he is talking about and link it to teaching. He explained why the dialogue is written the way it is and why it works. I had a hard time sitting still throughout the lecture as I was still in and out of cramping but I hung onto every word as best I could.
After lecture we had class with Craig, I really enjoyed his class. He was very energetic and laid back. He said he was impressed with how we moved as a group. He also teased us a little bit about having to do a triple last week and the heat in the room throughout training, though it has been much cooler this week so that has been a very nice break. He used different voices and quoted movies during class which was fun. One thing I noticed was that every time we did postures that we were kneeling down he was right down there on his knees with us (on the podium of course). I know some teachers say not to move around and use a lot of body movement in class but I quite enjoyed it, making me feel like he was working hard with us in some weird way.
Before eating supper I took some peptobismal (Nikki’s suggestion) to see if that would help with my stomach. It helped a little, I was still getting the cramping just not as sevre or as often. We had evening lecture with Craig. He talked about the different postures and the way to adapt them for certain ailments and what to look for. He also showed us what habits most beginners will start with on their first couple classes. He related a lot of the stories back to his first couple classes and incorporated his own personal experience and thoughts at the time (when he started) into the lecture. I enjoyed this element as it made it very personable. Bikram came down around midnight to reintroduce Rajashree to us and tell us that we aren’t allowed to have a party on Friday night. Then he proceeded to tell us he is going to the discothèque to go dancing Friday night but we will have to watch a movie after the talent show. He also told Craig to keep us there until 2am so we could stay and watch a bollywood movie with him after. Thank goodness Craig was on our side, we got dismissed at 1am.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Deja vu....Esak

The last Tuesday morning class was taught by Dave from Vancouver, also known as Fireman Dave. I have heard about Fireman Dave but never seen or met him before. This guy is stacked with nothing but muscle, and I heard its awesome ot see him to the advanced, can't wait. He seems really nice and taught the entire class with a smile on his face. His voice was very consistent but not to the point of being monotone which was refreshing. I lied down in savasana and I had a physically exhausting thought run through my head. It said to me “I am ready for a break and tired of taking these classes." First time I have had a thought like that since starting Bikram.
I sat with Auntie Shirley and two other trainees at lunch. We talked about that because the other girl at the table has the same thought. The guy figured our bodies have pushed as far as they want to during this training and now just wants to take a break, it totally makes sense. I don’t think I have pushed myself or gone any further in any of the posture in the last week. It might also be a mind thing, because I know we are nearing the end.
After class I made my way to the pool and ran into Nikki. For those of you who don’t know, Nikki is a teacher at my home studio. She was leaving the pool and I was heading there. I didn’t even recognize her because she had some big rock star sunglasses on. It was really good to see her and a surprise because I wasn’t expecting to see her until tomorrow.
After lunch everyone signed in at the lecture hall and got seated. After we were all sitting we were told to grab our stuff, go back to our rooms, get our yoga gear and meet in the yoga room. So we dressed in our yoga clothes and met in the room with anticipation wondering what was next. Lynn took the microphone and told us that me were going to do mini mock classes. Trainees got the opportunity to teach two or three postures in a row to all of us while we did them. So we were in that yoga room for three hours and went through all the postures three times. About an hour and half into it, and one full class later, Lynn let every other row rotate doing the postures, giving us a bit of a breather in between some postures. Thank god the heat was not on, not that that stopped us from sweating.
Evening class was taught by Esak. It was nice to have a teacher at training that I have had before in a normal class setting at home. Esak was at my home studio in July doing a demo/seminar and synergy for us so I had the opportunity to take his class there. I have always wondered if teachers adjust their classes to teach us trainees. I find Esak’s class very motivating and I worked very hard tonight. He seemed a lot more relaxed teaching in Edmonton, with good reason. Tonight he was giving corrections and calling people out on things. I really liked it and again learned a lot from him, he has such a calming energy as well. I think it makes a difference being on a podium as well because you can see a lot more I am guessing. He called us all out on bow, telling us it was not very pretty and made us do three sets.
After class on my way out I stopped to say thank you to Esak for a great class. I didn't think he would remember me because I know he meets alot of people in this business. He gave me a high five and said “yah, you work at the front desk at Pernille’s studio, I met you in the summer”. I just smiled and said “wow, good memory”, that was cool.
After supper we had movie night with Bikram starting with Diane answering any questions we had about anything. When Bikram arrived, Lisa from Las Vegas showed us a slide show she had constructed from when she visited India with Bikram last year. There were pictures of Bikram’s mothers house, his mom, Bishnu’s college (where Bikram was trained), Bikram’s family, streets, pets, food, family and the prayer centers. It was very neat to see and hear Lisa narrate for us, making it that much better. After that was finished we watched some DVD’s that had any shows or stories about Bikram over the last 25 years. After that was done we watched the last five episodes of the Lord Krishna movies that Bikram loves to torture us with. My Aunt the trooper actually stayed for the entire things until we got dismissed at 2am. I had to get up near the end of the movie because my stomach was cramping so bad, but hopefully a little sleep will help.

The picture is us four out for supper on Sunday

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The last Monday

Diane is back and that totally lifts everyone’s spirits here, well it lifted mine at least. Not that our spirits needed to be lifted anymore, I mean it is the last Monday but, you know, every little bit helps. I woke up this morning feeling like I was walking on air. I couldn’t figure out if it was because it is week nine and after morning class we are into the single digits in terms of number of classes left or if it was yesterday’s massage. It was probably a combination of the two. Regardless, class was awesome, lead by Diane, the bus driver is back, Welcome home Diane. Okay she is not a real bus driver but maybe I should explain the story so it makes sense.
Diane was here during weeks two and three, back when all the shit with the room was going on, and everyone was going down. At that time it was basically every man for himself and some people did their own thing in class, ahead of the teacher. Diane taught us a handful of classes and whenever she taught she called herself the bus driver. She made certain that we did postures together as a group, not before or after we were instructed to. She was driving the bus and we were being trained not to do anything until she instructed us to, again it was exactly what we needed at that time.
We impressed her today because after we did the sit up, she said, "ohhhh, someone’s been on you about the sit up, looks goooood." She is so aware of what is going on in her room when she is teaching, well I guess not only when she is teaching but also when she is taking class at the back of the room. She always has a little note pad where she writes down things to talk to us/ remind us about later, she's always learning and helping, I love it.
The room felt really cool today, but humid. Since we are in the final week we are allowed to put our mats anywhere in the room for classes. It was nice to practice by some people I have not been near since the beginning of training. It's also kind of funny to see the spots where people do not want to put their mats in their room.
Zia met Eleni and I for lunch at Chula Vista. After lunch it was back to the lecture hall for more posture clinic with Bikram. Bikram went off on some tangents today so we didn’t get through all the postures, only two left though.
Bikram taught evening class tonight. I was not feeling well at all, by the end of class I thought I was going to vomit on my mat. I had not eaten very much at lunch and then only had little snacks throughout the afternoon. Usually when we get back to the room before class I have some yogurt because I am a little hungry but today I decided to see what would happen without the yogurt. Well after that result I will never do that again, but you don’t know unless you try, right!?
After class they had the try outs for the on stage demonstration at graduation. One of the teachers had asked me to try out but I have heard that Bikram doesn't let anyone with tatoos demonstrate though. It didn’t take long for Bikram to dismiss those with body markings. It was fun to watch the weeding out process as Bikram personally chose who he wanted to demonstrate at grad. Bikram ended up picking 30 people when they only wanted him to choose 25, he kept saying how good everyone was. He said if they can only fit 25 on the stage then it is up to Rajashree to get rid of five people, lol, nice guy.
After supper we had more lecture with Bikram. He finished off the remaining postures and then opened the floor to questions about any of the postures. It took us over three hours to get through those final two postures. Bikram once again would go off telling us stories about fixing backs and spines and then forget where he was. I am not going to complain though because it was the last Monday, lol, and we didn’t have to stay up and watch a movie.

After class on Saturday, we wanted to take some pictures of us Edmonchucks (thats what we are called here) but Eleni bailed so Damien and I took some pictures.