A Stitch In Time…

Five minutes is all it took to prevent the unnecessary stress!

Five minutes is all it took to prevent the unnecessary stress!

When the executive assistant of my former editor was fired from her job, there was no one to coordinate the payments of my ex-boss’s monthly billing statements. And so she (my ex-boss) let the bills accumulate, stuffing notices in her bag until the 11th hour, when bill collectors came knocking at the door, or threats of service disconnection had been warranted. Many of us have this habit of procrastinating, and it’s not even because the things in question are so difficult to do. On the contrary, the simpler they are, the more we delay them!

About three weeks ago, I slipped my hand into my coat pocket and noticed a little tear in one corner. I made a mental note to sew it up as soon as I had time. Naturally when I got home, I forgot about it. Until the next time I wore said coat and slipped my keys into the pocket. I noticed the hole had gotten a bit bigger. “Hmm, better make sure not to keep my keys there, or it’ll make the tear even bigger,” I told myself. So I transferred the keys, and naturally forgot about the hole. Until the next time I dropped my keys in the same pocket. “Sew it up, sew it up, sew it up,” I told myself. When I got home I remembered to do it, but somehow found something more important to do.

Then this morning as I came home from an errand and was about to lock my bike, I motioned to pull out my keys from my pocket. But I couldn’t find them there. So I grabbed the “good” pocket, but the keys weren’t there either. Back to the “bad” pocket then: nothing but the satin fabric of the inner flap, and a gaping hole. A hole big enough for a five keys that unlock my main house door, bike, yoga studios, gate, apartment. I heaved a huge sigh of frustration, knowing I would have to backtrack and search the road for my fallen keys. But when I took a step, I heard the familiar clanging of the keys in my coat. They slipped through the hole yes, but thankfully fell into the coat lining.

Can you guess what I did as soon as I got into my apartment? If this isn’t life teaching me to stop procrastinating, I don’t know what is.




Magic Bike

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This is a shout out to all our friends who pitched in and gave us this wonderful tandem bike for our wedding. Last weekend Stefan and I rode with our friends through the French side of Switzerland. The highlight: a grueling climb up Weissenstein peak—a heart-pounding, leg-cramping, sweat-inducing 1,200m climb. It would have been grueling to do this alone, but thank you to my partner in climb Stefan, as well as to our three other friends who rode with us, the effort was divided by five.

Thank you, Suzy, Peter, Katrin, Laurin, Denise, Til, Wonny, Uli, Christoph, Daniela, Oliver, Filip, Iris, Amelie, Magnus, Andi, Gwen, Lena, Fabian, Kirsten, Josef, Sarah, Fabrice, Maze and Luise—more than giving us an awesome bike, you’re helping us build companionship, trust, communication, cooperation, and speed!!!

I’m Baaaack!

I took a leave from teaching yoga during the entire month of August. During this time, I traveled to Italy to visit my friend Shane and her lovely family. Then I flew to Holland for a week to spend time with my bookend sister (we call each other bookends; she’s the eldest, I’m the youngest), her husband, my two nephews, and their giant dog Lupo. It was back to Basel for a few days after that, then a trip to Chamonix to see my friends from the Philippines who were there to take part and cheer on in the UTMB (Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc), one of the most popular ultramarathons in the world.

During this time on the road, it was a challenge to keep my yoga practice alive. In Ravenna, Italy, Shane bought a yoga mat that I could use (my baggage space was too limited to bring my own), after which she promised she would use it when I flew back to Basel. Knowing that she bought the mat especially for me motivated me to make her effort worth it, so every morning before she, her husband or her two adorable daughters woke up, I practiced diligently in their guest room.
At my sister Mica’s house in Goor, Holland, I also borrowed her newly-purchased mat (bought in June and had never been used; she was glad someone would benefit from it). While the boys were still asleep or while she enjoyed her morning time alone, I practiced in their attic. The window in the ceiling was just the right spot to shed light on my morning asana sessions.
In both Italy and Holland, I had my own room, so it was easy to find my my personal space to practice. On my final trip in Chamonix, however, space was an issue. I shared a cozy apartment with three other friends, and my practice space was the narrow hallway separated by the bathroom and a double-deck bed. On some mornings, I practiced as quietly as I could, careful not to wake my jet-lagged friend who slept only 30 centimeters away from me. Sometimes friends would slink through to use the toilet. On other mornings I would flow through poses while my friends chatted excitedly in the background, the smell of fried squid, scrambled eggs, and garlic rice filling our apartment.
Sure, it was a great experience to find a little corner to practice in every place I traveled to, but I sure was happy to finally come back home. As I unrolled my mat on the familiar creaking wooden floors of Loosloo, as I saw the colorful candles that line up our big windows, as I came face to face with the big green oasis wall in the studio, I could only think of one thing: I’m back, and I love it.