I look at Viviene and wonder what her age is. It is obvious she is no longer in her 20s, and she admits she has been practising yoga for the past 25 years of her life. She is fit, she is not very taut, but amazingly flexible.

When Viviene called last week, it was my first phone call from someone unfamiliar in an unfamiliir place. You see, I have just arrived in a new country and settling in. She called to tell us of our class timings and so on which she detailed in her email later. I worked out she was also trying to understand her students. And I thought she showed some interest in me when I told her I was from India. I told her how stiff I felt now after having stopped yoga for more than a year. I was also, in truth, happy to receive a phone call and talk to someone. And didnt care it was a yoga instructer. So I indulged in all the small talks and asked her the location of her institute etc., which made her ask me, "is laurie Indian too?". I could sense the note of relief when I replied No, when she said "Oh then he would know the area." But we had struck a friendship of sorts, because when I showed up, she had a warm smile.

Viviene's Luna Studios, lies in a nice, ancient and quiet suburb called Fairfield. Here professionals come in drove to relax and destress after work hours. They are men and women, young and old and the rows of cars lined up do tell it is a busy haunt.

Laurie and I arrived ten minutes before 8 pm and more than half the students had already come. I thought if this this was India, we would have had to wait till 9 pm to start class as everyone would have arrived beyond the said time. A batch of students were already in their meditative end stage and ready to leave. It looked like one of the spas of Thailand in the beginning but I soon realised it was one long hall with all the props to make yoga exciting.

And soon Viviene had us all squatting and standing and stretching and flexing our body parts. The weather was 40 degrees and so she didnt push us really into doing more. She knew everyone's name by heart and was even considerate that I didnt follow her accent, as I stood up at times, when all the others were neck deep into the poses. "Indira, look at Laurie", she said when I appeared non-plussed.

Thankfully, the one-and-half hour session flew without no real embarrasments from me, save one instance when my stomach made the loudest noise, cause I had followed her strict instruction to be on an empty stomach for three hours prior to yoga. I must add, some of the last part to the session had its humour. One student when asked how she was doing replied, "I don't know, my legs are shaking like mad". I thought it was so funny. And at the end when she made us lie down in absolute surrender of the bodies to the spaces, the lights were put out and pin-drop silence maintained. But when she said "feel the silence", I heard two honks of a train in an otherwise quiet and honk-free place. Timed well. Viviene's words "feel your eardrums, feel your scalp, feel the space..." trailed off into my own sea of imagination and laughter.

1 comment:

Sabarmati View said...

you mean laughter controlled yoga?/ nice to read your posts after a long time.. keep going

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