So I get to Mysore and I can't practice for two days as the first day I was wrecked and it was new moon yesterday...typical!
So instead, yesterday, I take a rickshaw to get some breakfast at Santosha cafe, a gorgeous little place not too far from KPJAYI. It's very unassuming but does the most delicious smoothies, best of all you can add spirulina to them! Thanks to the spirulina smoothies, unbelievably friendly people and some amazing renditions of Radiohead on an acoustic guitar, I felt completely at home. Breakfast rolled into lunch at Sixth Main followed by a little nap late afternoon. (Whoever invented siesta is a genius). The evening was spent driving on the back of a scooter to Lakshmipuram, to a little Shiva temple where a little group of sat and meditated during the most amazing electric storm.
As me and a couple of other girls waited for the others to arrive a woman who had been sitting watching us came over and began to usher us towards a tap where she made us wash our hands, then into the temple itself where we had to follow her around and pray to all of the beautiful stone carvings of shiva in his different forms. Outside we had to had to hug a huge bull who sat with garlands around his neck, I thought at one point she asked me to get on the bull, but as I began to raise my leg she ushered me around it again to whisper into its ear... I hadn't got a clue what I was meant to say so decided to make a wish!! (Thankfully that's exactly what you are meant to do). Afterwards we drove back in the storm, I hadn't the foresight to take a waterproof with me to Mysore in the rainy season(?) so I got home drenched. I was met by my host father who told me off for getting wet, telling me to take his umbrella with me next time, I was too tired to explain it was never going to work on the back of a scooter!! (Although I have seen people try!)
So I'm writing this at the end of the 3rd day, high on good energy!....I woke at 5:50 had a pranic coffee and shower and went off to my first class. My new teacher Vijay remembered my name which was nice. Would that have happened at KPJAYI?!! I haven't practiced since the 28th August and thought I might struggle but the energy of the 8 people in the room and the heat generated got me through. I asked for assistance in my drop backs and he just looked at me gone out, so I did them on my own...the last one he asked if I wanted help coming up and I jumped at the chance. Afterwards he told me 'next time 5 back bends and 5 drop backs, OK?' and I was like, OMG! Oh, and he's a 5 A's and 5 B's guy too, has he not got with the new KPJAYI program???! Maybe he's sticking to David Swenson's DVDs! Anyway, I was really impressed with Vijay, his assists are amazing and he knew exactly where I needed work, so I signed up for the month.
Adam's shrine to Krishna
Afterwards I went straight for breakfast at Santosha and met up with some girls from yesterday. They spoke of going to a bhajan in the evening, but they also mentioned there was kirtan on at the same time, so I got the details for the kirtan, which was to be led by an Australian hare krishna. I wandered down to The Green House, a little health food shop later in the evening and waited until he showed up. Adam and his friend had cooked kedgeree and offered me some which I accepted and which was delicious. The three of us sat as he told us many stories about Krishna, one of which was about Radhe's lake, he got excited as he reached into his wardrobe and got a bottle of water from said lake and poured a little of it into mine and another girl's hands...we looked at each other as she said 'I'm not so sure we should be drinking this?!' Exactly my thoughts! I dipped my tongue in and rubbed the rest into my palms...then dried my hands on my trousers, I hope Krishna doesn't mind too much... Adam's voice was so unbelievably amazing I wanted to cry and was so disappointed when he said he didn't have any recordings! But in true hare krishna style he said it was just Krishna singing, it was all Krishna. But whether it was Krishna or Adam making those sounds, I could've sat and sung all night...
Adam's Krishna Kirtan Pad