Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Mi Chiripa

Hazy sunshine warms the day from 8 to 15 degrees within an hour. Action everywhere. Eight bluejays inhabit the feeder--above and below--and a flurry of squirrels prances, leaps, and spurts through snow. Meanwhile little Chiripa (Spanish for "stroke of good luck"), our seven-week-old kitten, charges my feet as I begin practice.

Ironic isn't it? I wrote about a friend's cat, Henry, rubbing my legs during practice several weeks ago. Less than a week later my own little ball of chi energy arrived. Chiripa requires more of my attention and awareness than Henry did since she's oblivious to danger ... and she races across the room faster. Consequently I keep my heel- and toe-rises close to the ground until I'm sure she's moved farther away.

My first discovery during practice ... my neck and back are too tight; I need to lie on my Chi and Hot House machines to work out the kinks. The Chi machine helps my body straighten out as it rhythmically stirs me from side-to side. It's a great tune-up for a tight, sore body.

My partner, Frances, and dog, Namaste, arise and enter the room before I finish my practice. I'm close to completing the form and don't want to disrupt it to move to a quieter space. So ... I gently remind myself: Stillness in the midst of activity. Then I focus on peace and quietude as the world, inside and out, moves around me.

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