Legend: BLUE-open, RED-closed, GREEN-by donation
Click here to view the accidental yogist's map of los angeles yoga studios in a full-size page

Friday, July 06, 2007

distant memories

it's been almost a week since the start of the city yoga yogathon last june 30th, and already, the memories are getting fuzzy. i suppose the jet lag involved with my traveling clear across the continent has something to do with it, but then again, i was so sleepy by the end of the 24-hour event that i was lucky to even remember where i had parked my car when it was all over!

i knew that there was no way i could remember everything that would go on over the weekend (after all, i can barely remember what a teacher said or did after a class is over), so i brought along a journal so i could take notes. and for a while there, i was doing a good job of jotting everything down. that is, until dinner was served. and slowly, i found myself trying harder and harder to stay awake...

so instead of going into a blow-by-blow account of what we did during the 86,400 seconds we were camped out in the kula in west hollywood, i'll share with you the few snippets that i do remember (and i may continue to add on more as i get over my jet lag):

~ the eager anticipation of things to come as we picked up our name tags and goodie bags, dropped off our pledges, and listened to rebecca benenati as she welcomed us to the yogathon

~ doing the "sun salutation hokey pokey" with linda eifer
you reach your hands up high
you reach your hands down low
you look up to the sky
step back and lower down slow
you come up to a cobra
and back to downward dog
jump up and start again

~ arm balances with james macdonald, hip openers with camilla bergstrom

~ pranayama with kate frankel, backbends with hillary rubin

~ handstands and headstands with tony giuliano

~ restoring our bodies (and our sanity) with sharon skok and karen byers

~ playing "yoga twister" with anthony benenati

~ a delicious foot rub from my thai yoga massage partner, natalie, as she followed michaela bohem - de wet's lead

~ a quick chair massage after lunch from chris arcucci

~ musically meditating with govindas and radha in the early afternoon

~ rocking with wah! just before midnight

~ observing the doublejoint twins, tara judelle and kris nelson, as they demonstrated advanced asanas

~ watching in amazement as philip completed the last of his 108 dropbacks

~ laughing along with carrie snow as she shared her hilarious yoga experiences

~ flowing through sun salutations while the sun was rising in the east... and the full moon was setting in the west

~ unwinding in final savasana while listening to ezekiel green playing the harp

~ finding out during random prize giveaways that i wasn't the shortest in class. nor the oldest (hard to believe, but true!)

~ winning five private classes with camilla bergstrom in the raffle (priceless!)

~ being thanked by margo thomas from habitat from humanity for our dedication and the preliminary yogathon donation of $46,106.87 (which will keep growing as donations continue to be turned in)

~ listening to lulu, an H4H beneficiary, as she emotionally told the group about how her family's life was radically changed for the better and the joy she feels every time she walks into their new home -- and knowing that our contribution will make the same dream come true for another family!

needless to say, it was an unforgettable experience!

and more importantly, i'd like to thank all those who've generously donated to habitat for humanity on my behalf:
my blog readers elise navin, pete grandstaff, and yogadawg
my friends anita, brian, barbara, and julie
my sisters suzy, gigi, and tina
my daughters christina and amanda
and special thanks to hillary rubin, who not only donated her time and energy to the yogathon, but also reached into her wallet to personally sponsor me :)

while i may not have raised the thousands that some others had accumulated in various creative ways, i know that my share will go a long way towards giving a deserving family a much-needed roof over their heads. and this is only the start; i plan on working on-site this coming september as we actually build a house and raise that roof!

postscript: another yogathoner, jill valle, spent a good amount of time capturing images of the yogathon with her camera. she's posted a few of them on her website; view them, as well as more of her fantastic photographic work, here.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Joni - thanks so much for including my site in your post! i loved reading all of your memories of yogathon, it brought me right back! hope you are well.


6:20 AM  
Blogger joni said...

and thanks, jill, for including a photo of my hands and feet on your site! i can't wait to see copies of the many other photos you took!

3:03 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Back to My Most Recent Post