(originally published on August 19, 2013)
I just returned from three days at Kripalu in the Berkshires where I attended a workshop with Martha Beck. Yes, THAT Martha Beck! She's so much more in person than what you read in her books or even as you've seen her on Oprah. A ball of energy, she took us on an emotional rollercoaster filled with so much laughter and, for some, a few tears heaving sobs. Most importantly, she trained us to bend spoons.
I also learned a few unexpected things during my time there:
- I am too old and too me to take the bus. Especially if there is a transfer in Springfield.
- Having your own room and your own bathroom is critical.
- If your access to food is severely limited, you will automatically start hoarding it.
- The one conversation thread that ran throughout the weekend revolved around how starving we all were.
- Always bring snacks. Always.
- Designated silent meals and silent spaces are the best. Except when the person across from you exhales deeply before every bite of food. Jesus.
- Limit my social media access and I get all twitchy. Tell me I can't take photos and I get mean.
- Look where you are going or you might step on a snake. Or a frog.
- Despite wearing no makeup for three days, someone thought I was 32. Must have been my I-am-about-to-pass-out-from-hunger look.
- When you live in the city, the farthest you can see is the next building. Being able to gaze at mountains over a long distance is strangely soothing to the eyes.
- Wearing yoga pants all weekend works well for me.
- There is only so far I'm willing to go with the woo woo stuff.
And then, there was this:
All weekend we talked about finding stillness in ourselves in order to access all sorts of things that make our lives better. Martha Beck shared story after story of weird "coincidences" happening in her life (and those of people she knew) after she was able to be open and still. Like crazy awesome stuff.
On Saturday, Martha instructed us to think about one of our wildest dreams and go do just one thing that evening towards making it happen. So my wildest dream is to be a travel photographer and writer who lives in the Caribbean. (OK, fine, Jamaica. Who lives in Jamaica.) I had been wanting to take photos all day so I knew that I would go down to the lake and do one of my photo walks. (Where you were allowed to take photos.)
I got back in time for dinner and ended up sitting with a woman I met the previous day who happens to work where I do (this happens all the time, by the way. They spray us with some sort of magic scent so we can find each other.) We spent a couple of hours talking about our respective dreams, something I rarely do with anyone. I usually end up being the listener, but for some reason I felt comfortable sharing my dreams of snorkeling everyday, taking photos, and writing stories about my experiences. Afterwards, she went off to write and I went back to my room for quiet time.
When I got there, I opened up my email, and there was a LinkedIn request that came in from someone I do not know. (This also happens all the time. Work in HR and everyone wants to be your "friend.") The time stamp on it coincided with the conversation I had at dinner about my dream. And (deep breath) .... the request was from a woman who is AN EDITOR FOR NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC.
Boom. Mind blown. Woo woo!
If you are interested, read Martha's latest book, Finding Your Way in a Wild New World. For those of you who are ones-and-zeros people, this will stretch you.
This Month ...
- celebrate the opening of The Red Inn for the season
- wear my new facinator to Harbor Lounge's annual Derby Party
- hike with a Massachusetts Audubon guide through the backwoods of Truro and Wellfleet
- listen to Monica Lewinsky and Ari Melber discuss stuff in the Hawthorne Barn
- experience several artist open houses at Twenty Summers
- get our annual townie passes for Tea Dance
- have our first meal of the season at Moby Dick's and Terra Luna and the Nor'East Beer Garden and Front Street and Mistralino and The Mayflower and ...
- take the moms out to brunch at a new to us place up Cape
- plant everything in our garden and on the deck (HOORAY!)
- figure out how to watch Eurovision this year (since Logo is not airing it!)
- enjoy all the free food at the annual JD's/Saki opening party (our favorite!)
- check out some of the events during Ptown Fashion Week
- pray for a cancellation for JURY DUTY
- explore Falmouth and finally try that lobster ice cream
- collect boxes of stuff to donate for the town's Monumental Yard Sale
- start buying fresh produce at the Wellfleet Farmers Market and filling my glass bottles at the Green Road Refill bus
- see some films in the Jamaican Film Festival
- enjoy our annual Lunch with Ezra at The Canteen (and the start of Boston friends visiting Ptown)
- buy some tubers at the Dahlia Sale
- do a night climb at Highland Light
- get up in the middle of the night to buy all the things in Target's Vineyard Vines collection
- bite my nails while watching the Game of Thones finale
- go to the Rhododendron Festival in Sandwich
- shiver through our first day at the POOL
- view the LASER RAINBOW that will be back again for Pride Weekend