Into India

My whole journey to India from Thailand was one infused with masses of delirium. My flight was from Bangkok to Calcutta and then from Calcutta to Delhi. I was only delighted to be informed by the checkin desk that at Calcutta I would need to retrieve my baggage and re checkin for the Delhi flight. I politely informed the woman behind the desk that this was outrageous seen as there was 50 minutes between each flight and I was already pushing it time wise. ‘No it’ll be fine ma’am, not to worry.’ But I was worried, I continued to reiterate my concerns to her but this was a fruitless endeavour as she seemed to think 50 minutes would be just grand. So what could I do but get on with it. Little did I know that In India everything takes about 45 years to take place and people generally move at a glacial pace.

On the flight connection I ran like a mad woman through Calcutta airport, grabbed the bag off the carousel, put it on the trolley and ran to departures. No lifts, only escalators of course. Take bag off the trolley and haul it up the escalator. ‘You’re boarding pass ma’am?’ I’m confronted with while trying to get through to the checkin area. ‘I haven’t checked in yet.’ So he sends me around the bloody houses to retrieve a boarding pass. This is all in the 50 minutes-during which time period I didn’t dare look at the time, just left it in the hands of something bigger than me. Whatever that was, worked. I just about made the flight, last person on.

On arrival to Delhi I got to the baggage reclaim. I waited. A familiar nagging feeling was at me, reminiscent of the one I felt in Sydney airport at the beginning of this trip: Where the fuck is my luggage, basically. At this stage the carousel is empty and the screen above it reads ‘Finished’. In a serious fluster I ran over to information and asked for help. The most delightful little Indian man came to my aid. ‘No worries ma’am we will find your bag.’ I honestly thought it hadn’t made the flight. I started to wonder what I was going to do without any luggage seen as I was about to get into a car for 7 hours. Needless to say, I wasn’t in the best form over another missing bag. Ten minutes later, a second Indian man came out from behind the carousel with my bag. I have never been so delighted to see an inanimate object in my life.

I got out into arrivals and looked for my taxi. Nothing. No-one with my name on a plaque and the instructions of the meeting point I was given were moot because the place didn’t appear to exist. Now I really thought I was going to cry. I asked a few taxi drivers where I was supposed to be, none of whom knew what I was talking about. I felt really helpless, my phone wasn’t working either. I found one dude who informed me that I was in the wrong terminal. Apparently Delhi airport has 8 terminals…..

Eventually I found my driver who had 3 other girls from my course in the cab too. So we hit the road-I use the term road loosely here. Anyone who has been to India will know how hectic the roads are. People literally drive like maniacs-swerving from one lane to the other with complete abandon for any road rules. The beeping is incessant and head wrecking. Cows wander the streets and motorbikes with families of up to 5 people on them whizz past-no helmets of course. I saw a bumper sticker on one car which read ‘This taxi respects women’ Already setting the tone that you’re on dodgy ground.I thought as we got out of the city the road would clear somewhat, but the level of heavy traffic remained the same. As we moved further out of the city I noticed more concentrated stares from people we passed as we drove. We had not seen a white person in 100km.

We finally arrived into our destination a good 7 and a half hours after we left the airport. Exhausted and completely delirious at the stage I felt so many emotions on arriving at the ashram and couldn’t really take anything in properly. We were given our rooms, I fell asleep horizontally for the first time in 3 days.

Since then we have been through a roller coaster of emotions, physical turmoil and realisations. It’s a strange place, one day you can be full of beans and delighted with life and the next you can have no hold over your emotional state. From the physical pain we’re all enduring from so much yoga-as well as sitting with a straight spine for 3 hours a day-this coupled with the detoxification happening in our bodies and the releasing of ancient blockages held deep in the fibres of our bodies-now being shaken up, makes for an interesting mix of emotions. One of our teachers today reminded us that the brain is in the head, however the mind is throughout the whole body. Your mind stores old wounds deep inside. For that reason a lot of crying has been done by many individuals as their psoas muscle opens up. Releasing years of shit. But with some love and attention these are all things we can appreciate and let go of.

I have such a feeling of clarity at this stage of the course, I’m so aware now of every issue I may have faced in the past, where it came from and why it has never been dealt with etc. The personal growth I have experienced here in the last 3 weeks is more than I have in the last decade.

I went through a rough detoxification over the weekend which lasted about 2 days. The pain I felt in my stomach was like nothing I have ever experienced before. I was doubled over on my bedroom floor unable to breathe. This continued ever 10–15 minutes non stop. I barely slept. What caused it, I have no idea. I ate the same as everyone else and no-one else was ill. My teacher suggested it was my body getting rid of all the toxins left in my body-again from going deeper into the practice. Let’s face it, there are years worth of toxins in my body…..

So needless to say, life in the ashram never has a dull moment. There’s a DMC happening around ever corner you turn-very existential stuff altogether. Monkeys will attempt to climb in the window at nearly every yoga class. On one occasion I heard the girl next door to me scream, we share a balcony so I ran out and a monkey had broken in and was eating her laundry powder. Yesterday during anatomy class they were banging on the window and pushing their mouths up on the glass-like a bratty child in the back of the car in front of you which you’ve seen so many times. Oh and last week during philosophy class, we turned around to see a monkey sitting at the back of the class-taking it all in.

. The food is simple, nothing heat forming-so if we want garlic/ onion/ coffee-we need to go get it elsewhere, which is often a necessity.

We held a New moon ceremony honouring Lord Shiva on the roof the other night. We said prayers to the elements and set some wonderful intentions together. I fell down the stairs afterwards, keeping the Bloom name alive and well. Classic, right on my arse.

The journey is ongoing, having learned so much already, I’m open and receptive to what the remainder has to teach, so much can happen in such a short space of time. Breathing through resistance, sitting alone with myself, stripping back the layers in meditation. Loving the journey, not concerned with the destination.

Till next time, look after yourselves. X

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