According to Wikipedia, David Williams was the first non-Indian to learn the complete Ashtanga yoga series and is credited with having brought Ashtanga yoga to United States. In any event, David Williams, whom most of you Ashtangis out there have heard of, is a teacher’s teacher….and….as it turns out, the soon-to-be houseguest (!) of a close friend of mine. And by close, I mean not only someone I talk to regularly about topics that are deeper than the weather, although we are perfectly at ease with each other when talking about the weather, but ALSO someone who lives a mere four city blocks from me, and a mere ONE city block from my kids’ school.
No, no, it’s not a love connection or anything like that. It’s just that David has grown kids, one of whom, a son, resides here in NYC. David decided that he wanted to pay his son a visit in between teaching/conferencing gigs here on the East Coast. Since in the apparent tradition of Ashtangis, the doors of our homes are always open to our fellow students and teachers, my friend decided to open hers to David, whom she met when she spent a week with him at Kripalu, along with another Ashtangi named David (as in, Swenson), another Ashtangi by the name of Danny Paradise and a host of students and teachers (including the Dark and Scary Forrest and B-Cubed) who hung on the every word of the Three D’s as they took turns revealing the folklore and the deep, not-so-dark secrets that go with having learned Ashtanga from source, one Sri K.P. Jois, many a many a many an era ago. Whew, that was a mouthful. I hope it made sense.
So, David Williams will be here next week, and hopefully, assuming that my friend’s work schedule permits (!), I shall be dining with them on Wednesday evening. Caravan of Dreams? Nah, this is Uptown Ashtanga. I am sure we will find an adequate substitute here on the Upper East Side.
The day before that, Halloween, I shall be hosting a pagan ritual at my apartment, which is to say that I will be creating a real, live replica of a haunted house out of my apartment, using scraps of fabric I bought at Joes’ Fabric Discount on Orchard today (to throw over every piece of furniture, for that abandoned ghost house look), many many cotton spiderwebs (especially in doorways, so that you have to move them out of the way to pass through), lots and lots of ghoul faces and homemade ghosts (these will hang throughout the apartment), colored lightbulbs, black lights and a box full of Yartzeit (Jewish memorial) candles (I chose them because they are pretty fire-safe, enclosed as they are in glass) for creepy atmosphere. Last night, my kids and I took Sharpee pen to old sheet and created a huge mural that will demarcate the line between my foyer and my living room: “You enter, you DIE,” it says, and for emphasis, it shows numerous scenes of fearsome creatures (vampires, Frankenstein’s monster) and bloodshed (a decapitated body impaled on a stake) and lots of blood spatters. This not only will contribute to the creepy atmosphere, but will also serve to save my sanity – no kids in the living room or my bedroom!
I’m planning a Mummy-Wrapping Contest, where the kids break up into teams and work to wrap one of their teammates in toilet paper, with the timer set to five minutes or something like that. The team with the best mummy wins. I haven’t decided what the prize is – perhaps escaping with their lives….heh heh heh….cackle cackle….
Not that I will be cutting a frightening figure, myself. My costume is…Elastigirl!!! Also known as “Mrs. Incredible”. I don’t know if I’m going to add the Holly Hunter accent. But I thought that playing an aging, chicken-thighed, formerly triple-jointed super hero would be pleasantly appropriate and appropriately ironic. I assume I will be the only mom dressed up. I always am. A couple of years ago I was Princess Leia. This was when I still had a lot of wigs, and so I twisted one up into a couple of ear-hugging “cinnamon buns” and threw on a bathrobe. Voila. The next year I was a green-faced Wicked Witch. Last year, a pasty-faced Willy Wonka. Both times, I found myself really disgusted with the makeup removal process. Thus, I made the decision to go makeup-free this year.
Oh, and here’s some news: my apartment’s on the market. Anyone who checks my flickr account will know that something like that was afoot. But right now, the ad is up on the New York Times Real Estate Classifieds Website, and I am pumped! Although, I know that my emotions will quickly go from excited to demoralized. It’s always that way when you open up your home to potential buyers.