Two days in a row! Still no pictures, but I do have a plan. Hopefully I can get some for you soon.
Something funny we've all noticed in class is the total free-for-all atmosphere. If you get up to pee, you might well come back and find "your" spot taken - someone else will be happily doing yoga on "your" mat with "your" props. It's funny how surprised we all were by this. We tend to have such a proprietary relationship with our props during class - "my blanket" "my block." In a way, this communal, take-what-you-need approach is quite refreshing, once we get used to it!
The studio is totally stocked to the rim with props. The room is shaped like a half moon, the walls are covered in photos of Mr. Iyengar doing glorious postures, statues of Patanjali & Shiva, photos of Krishnamacharya (Mr. Iyengar's teacher)... it's a busy but wonderful selection. The corners and the whole border are piled with countless benches, wooden constructs, bars, poles, blocks, cut of wood, blankets, mats, weights, straps, many different pillows... It's fantastic to see all the different ways that people put these props to use during their practice.
Each day (except Sundays) we have one class (2 hours) and one practice session (2-3 hours). The practice sessions are quite interesting. Everyone is quiet and focused and there is a lovely feeling of shared intention and intensity. There are props everywhere and it's very inspiring to see every one else practice. There are people from all over the world, and of many sizes and ages. From skinny to positively rotund, from youthful to quite ancient. All yoging away!
Tonight, after practice, we took a stroll through the park across from our house. How lovely! I look forward to many more walks there. It's not huge, but it's big enough, and it's well used by the neighborhood folks. There's a playground for the kiddos, and all ages walking around the pathways. There is a meandering path with benches, and also a quicker pace path for those who want to work up a sweat. The trees are FILLED with super noisy birds. Just on the other side of the park is a lovely little set of roadside stands and a sweetly maintained Ganesh temple. My roommate Jen and I wandered in right in the early evening and were literally entranced by the temple. The caretaker was sweeping, turning on the lights, and the music was playing... We just stood there for about 5 minutes before we realized any time had passed. Nightfall is a beautiful time in India, as all the little booths and stalls and temples light up and begin to sparkle.
love to you all