pergola, looking at the newly shorn bushes and trees and my newly planted annuals. My asters are wilting pretty badly under the hot sun. But the petunias, impatiens and zinnias are doing beautifully, and who knew that petunias smell so yummy? Boring. Sorry.
Yesterday, my Rotating Composting Bin arrived from back order at the local hardware store, you know, the one that is next to the gas station with the sign that simply says, “GAS”? I drug it home (that’s country talk for “I took it home”), put it together, smashing myself in the shins a few times or good measure and because I really don’t think I have enough black and blue marks on my legs, and set it in the back yard behind a copse of trees. It’s black, and it really blends in with the surroundings. But, ah, what goes on inside…an obsession of mine.
Yes, in fact, I am obsessed with composting, which is to say that I am obsessed with decomposing organic material. Obsessed. When my H asks me why this is, I can’t really explain it except to say that there is something truly satisfying to me about sending my tree and grass cuttings back to the soil from which they grew and using my own kitchen refuse to enrich my property’s ecosystem. If I’m not always “eating locally”, at least I am thinking globally by putting my avocado and mango rinds to good use here where I live. I haven’t quite figured out how to handle coconut shells. I can imagine that in the best of circumstances, their journey toward humus is a looooong and winding road. Perhaps if I obtained a wood chipper or an ax. Maybe I will do that, when I go to buy my shovel and my wheelbarrow. Of course, that won’t be necessary for a while because I JUST started the decomposing process.
How cool is it that grass clippings, branches, leaf clippings, fruit rinds, vegetable scraps, egg shells, coffee grinds, cardboard, newspaper – they all turn into a deep, rich, non-stinky, earthly black soil after enough time elapses? Given the right mix of brown stuff (dry things, like dead leaves and paper) and green stuff (wet things, like food scraps, recently live branches, grass clippings), regular aerating (through rotating the bin) and watering (living outside the city, I now pray for rain instead of dreading it; snow might be a whole nother story though), all that stuff that would otherwise have gone to some landfill in Staten Island or wherever could turn into mulch in a mere few weeks.
Mighty cool. In my opinion, at least.
Lewis loves it here. I am sure he will write soon to tell you what it’s like for him, a Bagle From The Projects, to move to the storied “farm in the country”, where some dogs are known to have gone but from which they have never returned. Lewis, as he will tell you, is here to tell you that some dogs actually DO end up on a farm in the country. Or at least on a rural postal route with an invisible canine fence.
Meanwhile, I’ve been going to practice most days at Shala X, where things have been mostly very good. Except today sucked ass. No, it sucked the ass’s ass. I was weak AND stiff. How’s that for unfair? If I’m stiff, at least I should be strong. If I’m weak, at least I should be bendy. Today, I was neither. If my back cracked, which it did, it did nothing to alleviate the stiffness. If I bound in this or that pose, it did nothing to release any endorphins. It was a long, slow struggle. And when it came time for dropbacks, I asked Mark, “Dja ever have one-a-those-days?” “Sure I have,” he said, “but on those days, I would probably be skipping backbends.”
And off we went. To backbends. I wanted to cry. I really wanted to cry. And not because of any emotional heart opening bullshit. I wanted to cry because I realized that with a sucky asana practice, I must not be enlightened. No, that’s not why either. What was it? Hmmmm. Oh yeah. Pain. It hurt like a mofo. It hurt to bend my spine. It hurt to press my chest out forward of my armpits. It hurt to stretch my hip flexors. It hurt to straighten my legs. It just hurt. And I wanted to stop. I wanted to quit. I wanted to say, “I think I don’t really want to do backbends after all.”….”Um, no, not just today, I mean ever.”
I vaguely remember this same sort of resistance in Supta Kurmasana. I used to arrive too late to practice to get adjusted. I used to dread getting adjusted. I used to feel miserable, like my collarbone was going to snap when getting adjusted. For a looooong time, there was this huge amount of resistance, physical, definitely, and quite possibly emotional. Now, the resistance has moved from my back body to my front. And I don’t wanna.
I just don’t wanna.
I think I’m going to take the train tomorrow and get to practice even earlier.
Two weeks til the latest tweak. Shall I be vague about it? We all have the right to be vague on our blogs, don’t we? Yeah, I’ll go with vague for now. Coy. I’m being coy. A tweak is imminent. It won’t keep me from practicing for very long. But it will produce a small blip for a short time. And hopefully it will be worth it. My tweak.
Whenever I feel myself going under, at the dentist’s office, plastic surgeon, wherever, I play an old Genesis song in my head that feels oh so appropriate:
“When you’re asleep they may show you
Aerial views of the ground
Freudian slumber empty of sound
Over the rooftops and houses,
Lost as it tries to be seen,
Fields of incentive covered with green.
Mesmerised children are playing,
Meant to be seen but not heard,
“Stop me from dreaming!”
“Don’t be absurd!”
“Well if we can help you we will,
You’re looking tired and ill.
As I count backwards
Your eyes become heavier still.
Sleep, won’t you allow yourself fall?
Nothing can hurt you at all.
With your consent
I can experiment further still.”
Madrigal music is playing,
Voices can faintly be heard,
“Please leave this patient undisturbed.”
Sentenced to drift far away now,
Nothing is quite what it seems,
Sometimes entangled in your own dreams.
“Well, if we can help you we will,
Soon as you’re tired and ill.
With your consent
We can experiment further still.
You’ll have no trouble until
You catch your breath and the nurse will present you the bill!”
Enjoy this beautiful day.