Thursday, February 22, 2007

Rebirth

Everything's thawing. Melting. It is glorious.

Finally, the temperature has gone from being subarctic to a balmy 40 some degrees. I felt like slapping on my bikini as soon as the thermometer hit 40. This is a new low for me.

There are so many beautiful things happening outside: the ice melting into sludge and the snow bleeding into slush, the cars splashing through the sludgity-slush lining the streets. It's downright spring-like, which has inspired me into a rebirth of my own. Well, that, and it's Lent and I am renewing my yearly Lenten promise to be the Best Person in the World, so there's a lot of inspiration in the air.

For instance, I started doing yoga again. And by "started doing yoga again," I mean I have gone to one yoga class at the gym, but hey, it's a start. I haven't done yoga regularly since I graduated college and miss it. I miss being able to contort myself into weird shapes and balance at precarious angles, but most of all I miss the part at the end where you lie on your back and get to take a five minute nap. Don't tell me anyone in the room actually uses that period to "meditate" after a 90-minute power yoga class -- that's a nap and let's not pretend otherwise.

Also in this period of rebirth and reflection, I couldn't help but think back to where I was at this time last year. Devotees will recall that I was in Salvador, Bahia for Carnaval with my slightly (i.e. majorly) unbalanced amigo D. To think that last year I was wandering the beer can-littered streets of Salvador in the wee hours, desperately searching for a bathroom and ending up popping into a brothel to pee, then wading through a sea of people to attempt to find a cab back, failing, and walking the 6 kilometers back to our hotel on aching feet --- it's extremely surreal.

At this time last year, I spent my days in Salvador doing the following: sitting on the tiny sliver of beach by our hotel being harrassed by guys selling cheese kebobs, sandals, flags, and sunscreen; drinking Skol beer and diet cokes; eating fried yucca and big Spanish tortillas from the place down the street; listening to the trio eletricos testing their sound systems outside our hotel door; reading Brazilian women's magazines on the sand; eating excessive amounts of chocolate; slowly but surely learning the words to every Chiclete com Banana song; running through litter-cluttered streets and pulsating heat; looking disapprovingly at sunburnt gringoes acting like big loud idiots; looking quite approvingly at the Brazilians with camelBak backpacks filled with alcohol; attempting, always, to be invited on top of the trio eletrico. Man, I wanted to be one of the girls on top of the trio...

I'll end this surreal flashback and wish all of you a happy Carnaval, happy Lent, happy thawing, and very happy yoga nap.

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