Tuesday, December 27, 2005

30 hours till Mysore

Well, actually a few more than that if you count the 36 hours of travel time till we land in Bangalore.

BTW, I saw that they are going to change Bangalore to Bengaluru next November. This comes as part of the movement that has changed Bombay to Mumbai, Madras to Chennai, and Calcutta to Kolkata. These changes embrace the language and culture of the Indian states. There's more info here.

This is my last day in Corporate America until I return and I've been cleaning things up and making sure that I've properly handed off all my responsibilities. In so doing I came across a weekly reminder that seems rather fortuitous now. I don't go in for astrology save Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology. I started reading Rob's horoscopes in the Metro Times (local Detroit alt press rag) when I was 13 years old and due to his ability to be spot on I've read them since. I'm not overly weird about it, but I'll admit to using his counsel to back up some of the decisions I've made. So this weekly reminder stems from one of Rob's horoscopes from 2004, it reads:

"SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): One of your main assignments in 2005 is to cultivate your sense of wonder. It's true that you already possess a more acutely developed sensitivity to marvels and miracles than most of the other astrological signs, but you still have a way to go to reach your highest potential. With this in mind, I'll ask you to make 52 appointments with yourself in the coming year. They could be at noon every Monday, or whatever time you choose. During each meeting, you will renew your commitment to seeing with fresh eyes. You'll vow to be alert for previously unnoticed delights lurking in the midst of your familiar surroundings. You'll promise yourself to seek out experiences that teach you things you don't know."

I read this and having benefited from listening to Rob in the past I set up a weekly reminder in Outlook for every Wednesday at 2 pm. So each week for the past 52 weeks this reminder would pop up and I would renew my commitment to what I began to call the Church of Wide-Eyed Awe. The fortuity stems from the fact that my last reminder is scheduled to come up on the same day that I am slated to leave for Mysore. Now, I'm not going to say that the reminder and my consistent dedication to seeing with fresh eyes and noticing delights in my surroundings had any bearing on my ability to find my way to India, but I'm certainly not going to say that it didn't! :) To be sure, I've succeeded in cultivating my sense of wonder! Thanks again Rob!

How goes the rest of it? Well, the holiday was just wonderful. Jeannine and I had a great time over the four day weekend. We managed to see all the family, got the house in order a bit, and spent a good deal of time in front of the fireplace snuggling (with the dogs) on the couch. Yesterday I began packing. I'm not taking much. I'm actually approaching the trip very much like I approach my trip to Burning Man. India seems and excellent place to practice Radical Self Reliance. Keep an eye here to see how this theory plays out.

Practice has been great. I don't know if I mentioned it here, but Matthew gave me Baddha Konasana last week and it just feels wonderful to get my chin all the way to the floor. This morning he did an adjustment that made me feel like I just scored a touchdown. I wanted to do a little dance or something... I have no idea what the hell I'm talking about there since I don't watch football, but you get the point. It felt good and it felt like returning to the campfire after a long walkabout. There, that is a more suitable allusion for someone of my "type" :)

I've got to get back to the 9 to 5 and close out this chapter. More on packing, practice and my attempt to drop all expectations tomorrow. ~G

1 comment:

C.K. said...

The name changes aren't always peaches and cream. If you get a chance pick up Suketu Mehta's Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found. From an interview with Terri Gross on Fresh Air last December:

Terry: Why don't you refer to Bombay as “Mumbai”?

Mehta: Bombay changed its name, or rather the name was changed for Bombay in 1995 by the Shiv Sena, a Hindu nationalist party. The British and the Portuguese created the city from a clump of malarial islands, so they should get the naming rights. The name is exclusionary. A number of people in the city refuse to call it Mumbai.

Terry: So it's a political statement you're making?

Mehta: Very much so. The politics of the Shiv Sena are nativist and exclusionist, which runs against the cosmopolitan spirit of the city of Bombay. I refuse to go along.

Terry: Is the Shiv Sena a Hindu fundamentalist party?

Suketu: The phrase 'Hindu fundamentalist' doesn't make much sense. There isn't a fundamental scripture. "Hindu nationalist" is more appropriate.

etc.