I had plenty of time to prepare for my first encounter with Bikram Choudhury (the yogi who put together the series of hatha yoga I engage in). Not that the trip to the 3rd annual European Advanced Seminar was well planned on my part. The entire trip was the result of a joke I made regarding my multi-cultural friendships being motivated primarily by a desire for world travel. In other words, "You seem nice, are you from abroad? Good. Let's go visit your home-town! By the way, my name is Kate."
I said this at the Lululemon warehouse sale where I purchased my much beloved hoodie-of-shame. I was getting a pre-sale pizza with my yogi friends from Bulgaria, China and the Philippines (more recently Hawaii) when I made this joke. During post-sale beers, the advanced seminar in Croatia was mentioned. One month later I was dragging The Boy to the Balkans, where my Filipino friend, Jen's, partner was born and raised.
I feel the need to state that I love my friends, even the ones who have no international ties.
Yes, because of my impetuousness the longest time I really had to debate the gravity of what I had just roped all of us into came on the plane, bus and taxi rides to the seminar.
This time was unexpectedly expanded when our plane from Zagreb to Dubrovnik landed in Split, where we traded our plane for a bus seven times the recommended* size for the twisting, cliff-hugging roads we took along the coast to Dubrovnik. The bus ride was four hours longer than the paid-for plane ride, so we were compensated with a 6oz bottle of water and a fancy Croatian Kit-Kat bar.**
We would have arrived several hours too late for the introductory lecture but The Boss has the gift of gab, (okay, maybe the gift of endless jaw) so he was still going. We slid immediately into the lecture.
This was maybe not the best way to meet the boss, with my blood-sugar swimming in the Adriatic far below us. The impression was not good. I will not bore you with the details, but here is an excerpt from what I heard: "Kale, celery watermelon. Bread hot soup. Sandwiches Danish-cheese!"
Mercifully, he closed the lecture with just enough time for Jen and I to dart to the hotel restaurant to mow down everything placed in our path.
Day one, impression one: misdirected anger at the person blocking me from caloric intake.
*Recommended by me. The driver was fine with it, judging from his maniacal use of the gas pedal.
** I eat every two hours. The Kit-Kat bar looked great for four minutes until I realized that was going to be all the food offered. Going into hour four my teacher, sleeping next to me, started to look like a pork-chop.