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Monday, September 18, 2006

partying the night away

now for belated post #2:

there's nothing more fun than being able to share some good food and good conversation with friends. throw some good yoga into the mix, and you have exhale santa monica's yoga bash 2.

just like its predecessor, yoga bash 1, last thursday night's party started out with david romanelli leading his signature music flow class with live music provided by matthew moon and friends. and just like YB1, the class was packed with both seasoned and aspiring yogis. it was so packed that some people had to be turned away (although they were invited to partake of the food and drink out on the patio while the class flowed on).

besides dave, there were other yoga instructors in attendance. earlier that evening, i had a chance to chat with krysia fenzel, a teacher at dave's at one yoga studio in scottsdale. krysia and her boyfriend had just driven in that morning from arizona and planned to take a yoga class each day of their stay. naturally, their first stop was to see what their buddy's big event was all about. later, as the swarm of yoga devotees invaded the asana room, i spotted kishan shah, of santa monica yoga and lululemon santa monica fame. we greeted each other briefly before he made his way to the front of the room to claim one of the last empty spots.

once class started, i noticed someone walking around the room. it turned out to be meaghan townsend, another exhale teacher, who was helping adjust students. she eventually made her way to me; we exchanged hello's as she helped me get into a deeper stretch.

after savasana and some lustily chanted om's, the yoga class emptied out into the patio, where we were served an assortment of hors d'oeuvres and desserts (and for those who weren't leaving anytime soon, there was an open wine bar tucked away in the corner). it was there where i ran into even more yoga teachers: elisabeth halfpapp (who oversees the yoga and core fusion programs at all the exhale studios), ciela wynter (another exhale teacher), matt reyes (from yogahop and lululemon santa monica), and tom morley (from maha yoga). they were all part of those who were schmoozing outside while the rest of us were sweating it out inside.

besides having my fill of food and a bit too much wine, i was able to take advantage of a brief urban ayurveda consultation with john holmstrom and martha soffer. i had expected them to tell me more about my dosha, whether it be vata, pitta, kapha, or a combination of the three. instead, john felt my pulse, jotted something down, handed me a sheet of instructions, and told me to continue the consult with martha. when i found her, she looked at the sheet and pretty much read it back verbatim. that's it?, i wondered. i quizzed her some more on what exactly the instructions were going to achieve. eat stewed apples. eat fresh fruits and vegetables. use unrefined oils. eat whole sprouted grains and legumes. exercise at least 20 minutes a day. why? she claimed that my metabolism was slowing down, but if i followed the instructions they had prescribed, i would have more energy, i would be more alert, and i would think more clearly. fair enough. i suppose eating less meat and more fruits and vegetables couldn't hurt, especially since it might help me lose those few pounds i've been meaning to work off.

realizing that it was getting late and i had an early start planned for the next day, i bade dave, matt, kishan, and elisabeth goodbye. i took one last piece of chocolate for the road, glanced once again at my new dietary guidelines, and was relieved to find out that there was no mention of my having to give up chocolate while on my new ayurvedic diet. this is going to be easier than i thought :)