Intersections, introspections and inversions

Today’s yoga flow: Vin-YA!-sa (t’was quite the flow!)

Today was my day to spend with my brother. And what better way to kick things off than with a visit to Yoga by Donation in Portsmouth New Hampshire, where Tanya really whooped us with some rapid fire flow shifts, and some inversions like you wouldn’t believe. Headstand splits, shoulder stands, forearm stands – and today, I bent backwards further than I ever thought I could! Technically, from camel pose, which I had struggled with a couple months back, I got to this pose:


But I’m pretty sure I didn’t look like this. Not even close. In fact, I pushed myself so far that I realized I couldn’t get out of the pose! Vin-yee haw-sa!

Today for me represented the intersection of a few different times in my life. Once upon a time, I used to love basketball. My brother is a coach for the local high school team, and today, I got to dip back into those old times teaching kids a few things about ball handling. I gotta say, there’s something inherently satisfying about hearing the word “coach”, and realizing that someone is talking to you.

Mike, the consummate coach

Earlier my brother and I spent some incredible time at a cafe in town called “Breaking New Grounds“. Besides having some great conversations about life, purpose, and perspective (you know, the usual), I was really struck by this sign:

Compost please

Now I know to you West coasters that this might seem like no big deal, but here out East – it gives me hope. This is the first time to my recollection I’ve seen the word “compost” displayed in a restaurant or at a cafe on my home coast. It’s these little things that count: making the effort to compost in the chilly Northeastern climate is wonderful to see in and of itself, but more than that, I see this sign and the effort of Breaking New Grounds as a powerful educational tool. In places where sustainability and permaculture especially are foreign terms or perceived as marketing buzzwords for something not terribly applicable to people’s lives, it’s the little things that I think end up making a huge difference. Moral of the story: take the small steps down the path you feel is right, and others seeking the courage or knowledge may soon follow.

Cheers from Mike

To conclude, on a day when so many things came together, I just got off the phone with none other than Than, who is back at home in Santa Barbara with the incredible O’Deans! I got to speak with them briefly on the phone, and it warms the cockles of my heart to feel like there’s a place I can call home no matter which coast I find myself on.

To celebrate this conversation, I wanted to add to this post an impromptu jam from my time in Santa Barbara, which came about as I was walking down the stairs during a Little Owl rehearsal (Little Owl is the super rad band Than is in – check ’em out!). All it took was a simple riff I found on the Uke, and from there, everyone just had fun. I can’t help but smile as I listen to this song: and I hope it has the same effect on you. Enjoy!

Love like a Warrior II,

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