Packing and Packing and Packing, Oh my! And you are definitely supposed to read this in the same sing song voice of Dorothy, “Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh my!” filled with the same tone of trepidation.
I laughed when I received a text from one of my yogi friends, Criss, who I met at Omega during a Yoga and Service retreat with Seane Corn and Julia Butterfly Hill. Hmmm… There’s certainly a story there, both meeting Criss and sharing a week with two of my favorite yoga mentors, Seane and Julia. I’ll save that for another blog, another story from the road.
But back to packing. I’m packing challenged. I know when you send a thought or intention out into the Universe, you somewhat solidify that thought, but it’s the truth. No way around it. I’m packing challenged.
I’ve arrived places with 10 sleeveless shirts and no long sleeves, thus somehow forgetting that a visit to a climate in the high 80s often has air conditioning. That won’t be a problem in the monastery because we need to keep our arms and legs as covered as possible, but hopefully you get the gist. Too many of some things and none of the others. Someone once said, “Don’t worry. If you forget, you can always buy it there.” Not true this time.
Lest I forget the text from Criss: “Countdown to Burma… I trust that you are mostly packed and visa in hard.”
Actually, visa in hand and duffel bag filled with wonderful art and school supplies from all of you, but personal packing?
My response: “Haha!!! No! But I sold the house yesterday.”
Yes. You heard me. In the midst of my packing, deciding how one dresses for yoga in triple digit heat in a monastery where the nuns are practicing in their robes, as well as for a yoga retreat in Thailand and traveling up country, getting vaccines, storing up on the remedy for Traveler’s Diarrhea, just in case, electrical converters, cameras, chargers, Visas for not only Myanmar, but Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos, too, I sold my house.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m thrilled that I sold my house, and even happier that it was to the “perfect,” though there’s no such thing as perfect, family with three young children. It just added a few more items to my already too long “To Do” List. Filling out a densely worded home inspection questionnaire, hiring a real estate attorney, digging up maintenance records, and a call to the electrician were not high on my priority list this week, but nonetheless, they were added.
And what has my practice been through all of this? Twofold. During yoga class, the challenge was greater to stay focused on the breath away from the To Do List, away from letting the mind flitter about in a panicked monologue about getting it all done, away from mapping out the rest of the day to maximize the number of hours in the day.
As it says in the first Sutra of the Yoga Sutras, “and now the practice of yoga.” Just yoga because that has been the other challenge. Unitasking as opposed to the myth of multi-tasking. So often I think I’m being extra efficient by doing more than one thing at once, but in actuality, it’s rapid task switching, when we spend more time going back and forth between the tasks rather than focusing on one from beginning to end.
I fly tonight at 9:45 pm, so I have a few more hours to practice my yoga through packing. Staying in the present moment and focusing on one thing whether it my breath, the clothes, or the To Do List.