Bom día! – an update from Portugal 🍀🧘‍♀‍💃⛱️☀️😎🌻

(average reading time: 3 minutes)

Bom día! Tudo bem? Tudo bem! And that’s basically all my knowledge of the Portuguese language. Ok…I also know: Uma mulher tem uma maça, meaning: A woman has an apple. Very important knowledge, isn’t it 😜😅😂? Especially for me, I love apples (not to confuse with Apple, Annet and Apple don’t go along 🥊👎😉).

Ok, enough blahblah, to the point! I had the idea that I would escape the winter in the Netherlands, Algarve should be warmer. Well… I know now that Portugal can have cold winters too! It started mid-December 2020 up to mid-January 2021. Happy that my winter clothes are quite oversized, and that I had brought so many clothes! I was wearing many layers to keep myself warm. The apartment I was in, had no insulation, an aircon to heat up the place, but it was quite noisy so after 10 minutes I had to turn it off. The fire 🔥 place was out of order, because I had put all my yoga stuff there (and I must admit: I don’t know how to make a proper fire and it’s an open fire place, so the apartment would either burn down, including the whole building 🚒 or everything inside would smell like burnt wood). Average temperature in the apartment: 11 degrees Celsius. It was often warmer outside….

I got my lovely winter toes back, I forgot how painful that is. The bathroom was so cold that I was already an ice queen before I could turn on the shower. I wrapped myself completely in the bed covers, preventing my nose from freezing off my face when I was asleep😉. Eventually, it turned out to be the coldest winter since 15+ years. In Laos (October – December 2019) we had 1 week of really cold weather. Why is winter following me… is there a hidden message 🤔? One thing I promised myself (Covid or not): I am on a tropical island from October 2021 until March 2022. No more winter toes 👣, no more winter clothes and a-sexy thermo-underwear 🩲🩳! Just summer clothes, SPF50, bikinis 👙, sunglasses 😎 and flip flops 🩴.

Luckily, the temperature is back to normal (around 12 at night, around 18 at daytime). And I exchanged the apartment for a mobile home at a holiday park😊. I am here for almost one month, and up to now, it is the best move (this is the 3rd place I live in within 3,5 months😅). Currently, we have a curfew 🔒 (8pm – 5am on the weekdays and 1pm – 5am in the weekends, beaches are closed too, unfortunately); luckily, the park is located in the countryside. We can go for a stroll in nature without seeing other people (and also no GNR/police 🚓), and if you want to socialize with people, there is always someone sitting outside on the veranda (except when it’s raining 😉).

All in all, I am living my dream: a lovely tiny home, lovely neighbors, beautiful nature, working now and then 😉 (I started a new job at Meditation Moments – https://meditationmoments.nl/). I can say I am definitely enjoying life 🧘‍♀️🧚🏼‍♀️💃 💫✨🍀💜🙏🥳🍹. Do you want to design your own life too? Stay tuned, I will share shortly what I did to make it happen🙏 😇. Ok, one piece of advice in advance: listen to your heart ❤️, it has all the answers to your questions💜🙏.

💜💚 With love 💜💚
         littlemissyoga                          

P.s.: I started to teach some online yoga classes – see https://littlemissyoga.com/about-littlemissyoga/new-online-yoga-classes/, also check my Facebook-page to subscribe to my classes: https://www.facebook.com/annet.gosens/

P.p.s.: I have put some pictures of my life in Portugal – check https://littlemissyoga.com/gallery/pictures-portugal/.

P.p.p.s: Meanwhile posting this blog, it is raining cats🐱 & dogs 🐶… it looks like autumn in the Netherlands😉.

Why should I practice yoga 🤔?

Dear all,

A short blog this time, as I promised. I hope this article motivates and inspires you to start with yoga today, actually there is no reason NOT to practice yoga😉. This article is just about the poses, later on I will explain more about the 8 limbs of yoga.

How it all started for me: I still remember my first yoga class, October 2015, Ubud, Bali, Radiantly Alive, Ashtanga-Vinyasa (one of the hardest variations of yoga), Acacia from Canada was teaching. She wished me good luck for this class and some people were giggling 🤔😳. No, I couldn’t do all the Ashtanga-moves (and up to now I still can’t do all of them), I almost strained my neck because I had to watch my neighbors at the left and right to see what the Vinyasa (flow) was; I must have looked very clumsy I think😅. But besides of that, the energy I gained during and after the class and her way of teaching had inspired me to start doing yoga. When I started, I was a die-hard smoker and drank (too) much alcohol. By starting doing yoga and later on by taking yoga teacher trainings, yoga helped me to let go of the bad habits (except for eating (too much of) 85% or 90% pure chocolate 🍫😋). Sometimes I drink a glass of red wine, but I quit smoking completely. I turned from a vegetarian into a 95% vegan person. By doing this, I feel better, way better. And that’s it all about: do what fits you, do what makes you feel good. Yoga can be that (perfect) tool to guide you to become the best version of YOURSELF. And isn’t that what you truly want 😇💚🙏👍? Then definitely read the article below 😊 👇🙏🧘🧘‍♂️.

**What Doing Yoga For The First Time Does To Your Body**
Many thoughts will come to mind when you start doing yoga for the first time. As you stand in the back of a class, or unfurl a yoga mat at home, it can all seem like a lot of wobbling on one foot as you struggle to figure out a pose. But even if you’re exhausted, overwhelmed, or confused at first, there are still all sorts of positive benefits to be had.

Right away, you’ll likely feel more space and a lightness in your body after your class. Yoga focuses on creating space in the mind and body so not only should you walk away feeling less stressed and more relaxed but you should feel less tension in your muscles. This is due to deep breathing. Your entire body will be oxygenated from the result of deeper breathing and increased circulation, and this will help you feel present and awake, as well. This loose, light feeling can stick around the rest of the day — which is one reason why folks turn to yoga as a way to de-stress — and it can even impact how you sleep. After you do yoga for the first time, you may sleep really well and find you wake up refreshed and rejuvenated.

That said, if you aren’t used to moving or exercising in such a way, you might notice that you feel a bit sore after doing yoga, too (for some this feels great: no pain, no gain). Holding a yoga pose not only requires core strength, it also requires endurance. The day after yoga you are very likely to be sore throughout your whole body. You can alleviate this by performing a warm-up before yoga, which will get the blood flowing to your muscles before going through the workout, and then following up with traditional cool down stretches. Physical symptoms aside, yoga can also tap into emotions more than you might realize, so don’t be surprised if some unexpected feelings bubble up during your class. We tend to hold our stress, worries, and tension not only in our brains, but throughout our body physically, mainly in our hips and jaw. When people try yoga, it might be their first time practicing breathing exercises (Yogi breath), and it may be the first time they allow themselves to release that stress through intentional breathing and practicing the poses.

If you’re new to yoga, it can be a big release, especially if you haven’t given yourself permission to let go of that tension before. But it can be yet another sign yoga is worth a try — and that you’re doing something good for yourself 😃.  **

I hope that you are convinced to roll out your mat (or blanket or towel) and start your practice today! If you need support with that, let me know, I can definitely help you😊🙏.

💜💚 With love 💜💚   
littlemissyoga                                           

        

Inspiried by: https://www.bustle.com/p/what-doing-yoga-for-the-first-time-does-to-your-body-19296977

Today I rise…✨🧚🏼‍♀️😇🌟

Reading time: about 6 minutes (more or less – depending on how fast or slow you read😉)

My dear readers! Happy New Year! Welcome to a new beginning, a fresh start. Maybe you have set resolutions for 2021, maybe not (like me 😉). I have set short-term and long-term goals and one of the goals is blogging more often, and blogging about what I want to share with the world, so here I am! This blog will be a long(er) one, in the future I will keep them short(er), so I am not stealing your time (one of the Yamas in Yoga: Asteya).

I got inspired by a YouTube video one of my friends sent me on my What’s app a few days ago (link is down below – no commission for me 😉). This YouTube video is showing exactly what I want to set out in this world. And I would love to share it with you because I need you; only together we can make the difference 🌟✨💜💪🙏!  

Today I rise…
Where are you? Little girl with broken wings but full of hope….
Where are you? Wise women covered in wounds …
Where are you? Today is the day I will not sit still and give in anymore

This is exactly what I am going to do from now on, online and offline, not sitting still anymore and giving in. I am fixing my broken wings, so my innerchild can fly again and can follow her dreams, hopes and wishes. I am licking my wounds from all the things I have been gone through, it doesn’t matter how deep or undeep the wounds are… wounds need to be healed first, then I am able to go on, with more power 💪, more self-confidence, more persistence, and with much more love in my heart ❤️. Yes, I did what people told me that would be better for me, I listened to them, they were older and wiser than I, so I trusted them. I didn’t listen to my heart. My heart was whispering all al the time with answers. One day, I woke up and said to myself: You need to make your own decisions, even if that is against all odds. What does make ME happy? Which path do I want to choose: The ‘beknown’ one, staying on the safe side, or the one less travelled by? I haven chosen the last one.

Today I rise
I am bruised but I will get up and walk again
Today I rise
I don’t care if you ignore my beauty
Today I rise
Through the alchemy of my darkest nights I heal and thrive
Today I rise
I move through the world with confidence and grace
I open my eyes and I am ready to face
My wholeness as a woman and my limitless capacities
I will walk my path with audacity

Today I rise
I reconnect with the many aspects of myself
I am in awe of the reality I can create
I am a healer – I am a queen
A wise woman – A wild woman

I will rise and beam
I am a rebel
I will wake up and fight
I am a mother and I am a child
I will no longer disguise my sadness and pain
I will no longer suffer and complain
I am black and I am white
There is no reason to hide

Everything I need, is already within me, everything you need is already within, we already have all the ansnwer. We are one, we are all made of the same energy, we are all love and light, coming from the same Source. That Source is something bigger than us, you can call it what you want, but you can’t deny the power of the Source. There is no reason to hide anymore, because we are all the same 🙏💜.

Where are you … I call upon Kali
To kiss me alive
I transform my anger into power
No more heartache or strive

The world is missing what I am ready to give
My wisdom, my sweetness, my love
And my hunger for peace

I weep with the trees and the rivers and the earth in distress
I rise and shine and I am ready to go on my quest

Today I rise
Without doubt or hesitation
Today I rise
Without excuses – Without procrastination

Today I call upon my sisters to join
A movement of resoluteness and ….concern

Why are we still fighting, why are we still divided, why are borders, passports and different currencies blocking our need, our RIGHT to be ONE? Why do people still believe that MONEY is POWER and that POWER is important to survive? All is coming from the same Source, everything is energy. POWER is just a mask to disguise FEAR. I call upon all my sisters: let’s unite and start to shine our LIGHT to and share our LOVE with everyone, together we can make the difference. It is good to know about LOVE & FEAR, we do need both, but nowadays I ask myself: where is the LOVE? FEAR is trying to take over the LOVE. I won’t let that happen! So, sisters, let’s go hand in hand and make that movement of resoluteness and concern ✌️🤝🙏.

Today is the day I rise and scream
Today I foresee the future of my dreams!
Today is my call to action … I will fulfill my mission
Without further distraction.
Today is the day!
Today I will start
To offer the world
The Wisdom of my heart.

I believe in fairy tales 🧚🏼‍♀️🏰 and they always begin with: Once upon a time… and they always end with: And they lived happily ever after. And I want to have that ending, happily ever after, living in a world of LOVE, PEACE & LIGHT, together with you, you and you, everyone, NOW! I just need 1% of the whole world to create the difference, to create a better world🌎🌍🌏.

I have just one question: Are you with me?

💜💚 With love 💜💚      
littlemissyoga                                        

        

Inspired by this video 👇:

P.s.: Please, comment on this blog if you feel like it, either you agree or disagree, if you have add-ons or want to unite with me 😊. All is welcome!

🙏🏻💜Gratitude 💜🙏🏻

These words came up when I was at the beach, last Monday (13 July 2020). I’d like to share them with you 🤗.

Gratitude
              For this beautiful day
A beautiful day to live for
A beautiful day to die for

Gratitude
              To all my friends and family
The ones I still have
The ones I have lost
              All of you taught me something I needed in my life

Gratitude
              For all the gifts and talents I possess
Some I use
Some are still untouched

Gratitude
              For every day
Sometimes I seize it
Sometimes I let it pass by

Gratitude
              For this word
Sometimes I feel you
Sometimes I don’t
              But you are always there at my side

💜💚 With love 💜💚     
         littlemissyoga                                       

3 poses from ❄🌨☃ winter to spring ⛅🌱🌦

After more or less 3 months cocooning, staying warm inside the house, enjoying the fire places (or central heaters nowadays), nurturing the body with more heavy food to keep it warm and give energy to stay healthy, a new season is about to start: spring. The meteorological spring starts at March 1, the Western calendar says it starts at March 21.

In the first days of Spring, we see how everything is awakening from a long deep sleep. It is the time to be active and to be awake. Nature is waking up as the days lengthen, plants and flowers start to blossom and the colour green is everywhere. The colours and life around make the spirit feel full, our appetite is less, or at least, we start to eat lighter food, food that is easier to digest. It is the time to cleanse, fast and allow this new beginning of life to start from a clean space. As we clean, we make room (the element Space) for new visions, for new opportunities and new plans to come through without much effort. The energy is expanding and is the beginning of Yang energy.

‼⚠Warning/Disclaimer⚠‼
Be very careful by practicing theses poses, especially when you have none or little experience in yoga and/or sports. If you feel any pain during a pose, back off, take some rest or even stop doing the particular exercise. Respect your body, respect your limits 🙏🏻🧘‍♂🧘🏻‍♀🙏🏻. If you still experience pain after these poses, please consult your GP. ~~littlemissyoga~~ is not responsible for any physical injuries or mental issues.

1. Uttanasana / Standing forward fold
😊😊Benefits: Opens the back of the body, stretches the hamstrings, hips and calves. It lengthens the spine, it creates more space on the back of the body. Furthermore, this pose provides strength to your thighs and knees. Regular practice relieves stiffness in your spine, neck and back.

  • Step 1: Tuck your toes and push into both feet, folding evenly over your legs (picture 1). Activate your abdomen (navel towards spine) to have a better and steadier foundation.
  • Step 2: Bend your knees as much as needed (picture 2), in favour of lengthening the spine and releasing tension in the neck. You can also use blocks (or a thick book/pillow) to put your hands on or cuff your elbows with the opposite hands (picture 3).
  • Step 3: Breathe towards the belly, hold as long as you want.
  • Step 4: To get out of the pose: Bend your knees deeper, let your arms hang loose, tuck your chin, press a little harder in all 4 corners of your feet and roll yourself up to standing, stacking the vertebras one by one. Last part is to lift your chin.
  • Step 5: Take a few moments to observe your body and mind, arms resting alongside the body.

2. Utthan pristhasana / Lizard lunge
😊😊Benefits: Opens and stretches the hips flexors and groins, it even creates some flexibility in the lower back. It strengthens the thigh muscles of the front leg and it opens the chest and neck. With opening up the hips it is possible that you release emotions, if this is happening, just let it be 😊. This pose is a good preparation for practicing hanomanasana (full splits).

  • Step 1: Come on your hands and knees, hands shoulder width, wrists in line with shoulders; knees hip width, knees in line with hips.
  • Step 2: Step your right foot forward, on the outside of your right hand. You can stay on your hands (picture 1) or lower down on the fore arms (picture 2), as long as your hips descend lower than your heart.
  • Step 3: Keep your front knee in line with the ankle and allow your weight to move to the outer edge of the front foot (picture 3). You can even lower down on the fore arms (picture 4), this is opening the hips even more.
  • Step 4: Hold for 5 breathes or more as long as you like before you change legs.
  • Note:    If you hold this pose for a few minutes (like a Yin-pose), you can take a counterpose before changing legs, for example ardha hanoman/half splits, all fours (with hip circles) or even downward facing dog (with hip circles). Most important is to listen to your body.
  • Step 5: After you have done both sides, you can sit down in Thunderbolt (your bump on your heels) or come into balasana /(wide legged) child’s pose.

3. Ustrasana / Camel pose
😊😊 Benefits: Opens up and stretches the chest, abdomen, quadriceps and hip flexors. It improves the spinal flexibility and loosens up the vertebrate. Also, it strengthens the shoulders, back muscles, thighs and arms. It even can reduce fat on the thighs (after doing this pose quite often) and it improves your posture.

  • Step 1: Come to an upright kneeling position, knees hip width distance. You can either tuck your toes or keep them pointed (flat on the floor).
  • Step 2: Keep your hips vertical of the knees, placing the hands either at the lower back for support (picture 1), or one or two hands on the heels (picture 2 & 3), lift your heart into Ustrasana. You can keep the head up or drop it down for opening up the throat (picture 4).
  • Step 3: Keep squeezing the inner thighs toward the midline, extend the sacrum downward toward the knees.
  • Step 4: Try to hold for around five breaths in this pose.
  • Step 5: Come out of the pose by squeezing the legs together and letting the heart lead you up. If you had your head down, you first lift the neck and head to an upright position. Then slowly sit down in Thunderbolt (sitting on your heels) or in balasana/(wide legged) child’s pose.

You can stay in balasana (child’s pose) after you have finished these 3 poses, to calm down the body and relax the breath. Whenever you are ready to come out of it, feel free to do so. And enjoy the rest of the day or have a good sleep 😊.

I hope you have enjoyed these 3 poses and that you feel more energized and opened up, ready for facing spring 😊. If you like, you can share your experiences with me 😊.

💜💚 With love 💜💚        
littlemissyoga                                       

        

Inspirational source:
https://chopra.com/articles/11-yoga-poses-and-a-meditation-for-transitioning-from-winter-to-spring?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=180403-April-Newsletter&utm_campaign=Newsletter201843

3 Very good yoga poses to survive the winter🥶❄🧘‍♀🙏🏻

Are you struggling with the winter time right now? Your body feels stiff and cold in the morning, it is hard to get out of your bed, because it is so nice, cosy and warm after 6 up to 8 hours of sleep 😊. Still, you have to get out one moment (yes, even on your day off 😉)

I have 3 quite easy yoga asanas (Sanskrit word for poses) to warm you up in the morning, to awaken your energy, so you can survive the winter time 😊. It just takes 5 minutes, so roll out your mat (or blanket/towel) and let’s start!

1. Chakravasana – Balanced cat/cow pose (5 – 10 breathes each side)

😊😊 Benefits: Focus, equilibrium, balance, core strength

Step 1: Come on to all fours, hands underneath shoulders, hands shoulder
width distance. Knees and hips stacked, knees hip width distance.
Spread your fingers, relax the toes (picture 1).
Step 2: Tuck the belly, core is working. Neck is long.
Step 3: Lift up the right leg back, keep the hips, knee and toes rotated
down.
Step 4: Lift the left arm in front, bicep along the ear, reach the fingers far
away. Press firmly into the standing hand (picture 2).
Step 5: Hold for 5-10 breathes then do the other side.

Picture 3: To light the fire a little more: add on knee to elbow (3 to 5 times each side, or whatever feels good 😉😇)

2. Utkatasana – Chair pose (5 – 10 breathes)

😊😊 Benefits: Heat up the body, (focus on the core, fire- element), especially with ujjayi breath (like your fogging a mirror, the breath comes from the back of the throat).

Step 1:  Feet together, big toes touching, heels slightly apart.
Step 2: Sink your hips low, knees not over toes (if you look down you can
still see your toes).
Step 3: Squeeze your upper thighs together, shift weight a bit towards to
your heels, toes are light.
Step 4: Spine is long, tuck the belly in (activate your core).
Step 5: Reach arms overhead, biceps along the ears (picture 1) or reach the
arms in front, less tension in the shoulders (picture 2). Shoulders
are relaxed.
Step 6: Breathe towards the belly and hold for 5 up to 10 breathes (or
longer if you like).

3. Balasana – Child’s pose (10 – 15 breathes)
One of my favorite poses and so easy and so effective for your body mind and soul 😊!

😊 😊Benefits: Helps to improve your digestion, calming down the body and mind.

Step 1: Sit on your knees, your bottom on your heels
Step 2: Slowly fold forward, your forehead is touching the floor (or your
cheek if you have compression in the neck).
Step 3:  Hands can be overhead, touching the floor or next to your ankles.
Step 4:  Surrender, and follow your breath, relax completely, hold for 10-15
breathes.

Note: If your chest needs more space, open your legs wide so your chest can
relax more.

This pose can also be done before you go to bed, because it is a calming down, relaxing pose as well. You will definitely have a good sleep 😊. If you do it before you go to bed, you better practice this pose in your bed, so you can go to sleep directly when you’re finished 😊😊.

If you repeat these asanas daily, you will definitely feel the difference. The good news is: time passes by automatically, spring is almost there. If you still have a hard time with the winter, then I have another advice:  escape the winter!! Book a ticket to a warm place and come back when summer starts (like I do 😉, but nevertheless, I practice these asanas every day, because they are good for my body, mind and soul😊).

Soon I will pose an article for 3 good poses for spring time.

💜💚 With love 💜💚             
      littlemissyoga                                  

  ** Inspirational  source: yoga magazine/yoga online, unfortunately I can’t find the link to this article anymore**

2020 – A beautiful new year has begun!

Hi all!

Finally, I am back with an update, but first of all best wishes for 2020. Have you set up a whole list of resolutions? Or maybe you already forgot about them? I have definitely resolutions, but I keep them simple and small, so I make sure I will keep them and make it happen 😊. One of my resolutions (or maybe I better call them goals) is to set up retreats. I have never done that, so I don’t know where to start yet. The first retreat I will teach is  at Polwaththa Eco-lodges in Sri Lanka and I saw that one of my yoga-teachers friends wants to set up retreats as well! So, that is good news. By the end of this year, I might have reached my goal! But that’s enough about serious business, let’s update you about my travels 😊.

Luang Prabang – Laos
After my 2 months teaching in Vang Vieng (VV) I went to Luang Prabang (LP) for 2 days. I got there on December 30, got a free pick up to my hotel, checked in and went for a walk. Luang Prabang is a cute little village, protected by Unesco. It feels like you are in a movie, it doesn’t feel like a real city. It is quite touristic, but despite of that it doesn’t feel like that. The food is amazing! And when I walked around, I met a couple which practiced yoga with us in VV 😊. It’s a small world after all!

In the evening I met Shara, another yoga student. We met in VV and there we found out we were both going to LP on the same day. So, that’s why we met each other there. We booked a tour on the 31st: Waterfall, Bear Sanctuary and The Butterfly Garden (this is run by Dutch people). The waterfall (Kuang Si) was beautiful and cold! I swam in it, the water was pretty chilly (like the pool in Silver Naga 😉), but after a few moments it was really nice. In the Butterfly Garden they had a pool with the Dr. Fish fishes, the ones that eat dead skin of your feet. It’s a funny feeling, especially when a big one becomes really greedy and tries to eat a big piece 😉. I have so much dead skin on my feet, that if I had to wait until all was done, I probably would have been there still 😉. And we just had 2,5 hours altogether to do these activities, then we headed back to LP. We walked through the city, went to a temple to chant with the monks. The chanting felt like a mental cleaning on the last day of 2019, releasing all my sins 😉. The swim in the waterfall was the physical cleaning for me. After the chant we had a nice vegan meal on the night market. Ready for a party, you all think. Well… we were sooo tired that we got back to the hotel. I packed my bag and went to bed at 10.30pm, because I had to wake up early the next day to go to the airport (7.30am take off to Vientiane, to continue to Colombo – Sri Lanka). So, no New Year Party for me. In Laos they don’t celebrate it, so I didn’t miss a thing. I had a good sleep and was ready for the next adventure: Sri Lanka.

Trip to Colombo – Welcome to Sri Lanka
5.45 am – the taxi picked me up to go to the airport. After my check in I called to Holland (oh, officially The Netherlands😉) cause is was New Year there. The flight from LP to Vientiane went well. But then… I booked my ticket from Vientiane (VTE) to Colombo via Kunming (China), baggage should go straight to Colombo, lay-over 1 hour 50 minutes, perfect! Well… at the airport of VTE I was being told that I had to check out and check in, get a China Visa (temporary one). Uhm… 1 hour and 50 minutes to have baggage, Immigration, check in, Immigration, security… Long story short, I made it. Together with another passenger we could get through the priority lane 😊. That was a big relieve! After landing in Colombo, I took a taxi to bring me to my hostel. Then I went with Yogya, she stayed in the same hostel, to have some dinner at the beach. Hard to find something vegan at the beach… all with fish, meat or eggs. After the dinner (something Sri Lankan vegetarian food, really good though, I was also really hungry)… straight to bed, tired of the whole trip.

Colombo – Another big city
The next day, I was awake early, getting ready for my visa extension at the Immigration department. Too lazy to get a bus, I took a tuktuk to get me there, handed in some papers, went from one room to the other, waited a little and within 2,5 hours it was done! Way faster than some websites mentioned 😊. While waiting I saw another person of the hostel, Thomas from Swiss; we went back to the center of Colombo by the public bus, walked around, acting as tourists 😊. It was good to spend that day together; we both agreed that Colombo was just another big, polluted and too crowded city. 2 Nights in this city was more than enough. We saw some beautiful spots though, like the Red Mosque, small allies, a big parc and a smaller parc, some temples and we went to the beach to get some snacks as dinner (we had a big Indian lunch). The next day we walked together to the Fort train station (little girl, too big backpack, I really need to ditch stuff). I bought a ticket to Kandy (250 RP is like $1,50 or so), he went to another place in Sri Lanka.  2nd class, not reserved, which means that you can get packed in the train. I was lucky, got a seat 😊. That’s the way it goes with traveling, you meet people, spend some time together and then you are going your own way again.

I was ready to teach, then I got a message from Polwaththa, the other teacher would stay here until January 10, so I should start teaching on the 10th instead of 5ht, as we had agreed. I already prepared everything for the trip to Digana (the name of the village where Polwaththa is), I didn’t want to stay in another city just for killing time. I told that I couldn’t change my program; the owner agreed on it, I could come this way and share the room with the other teacher. She didn’t know that I was coming… all was a big mess and miscommunication. Now I will start teaching on the 11th, until that day I am just doing nothing… like self-practice, joining the classes (if we have people), walking around in the jungle (we are almost in the middle of the jungle!), do some trekkings, writing a blog, reading a book, annoying the staff 😉 and enjoying the good food they cook here! Really amazing! Sorry for LP and Laos, but Sri Lankan (vegan) curries, vegetables and the breakfast are amazing!

We have 3 bookings for yoga retreats and regular bookings for the upcoming days, hopefully these regular people will join my yoga classes too😊.

Well, that’s is for now, it’s a bit longer than I had in mind. Next one will be shorter 😉.

💜💚 With love 💜💚   
     littlemissyoga              

P.s: I uploaded some new pictures, check the gallery :).                      

     

Lazy Laos Life :)

Last update was quite long, so I will send more and shorter updates. Last week was a lazy week. I practiced yoga a lot, especially abdominals (a block in between my legs, navasana – boat pose, another block in my hands and then crunch up, legs still up); my abs are still telling me that is was a real good practice. Time for a repetition 😉. Abs are very important in yoga, though we don’t train them all the time in particular. In almost every asana (pose) you can engage your abs, so you are using them 95% of the lesson. Especially in balancing poses (feet, arms, inversions) you train them. Extra training is always good though 😊. I am also practicing chin stand, scorpion and handstand (I am not really into inversions, but I want to improve my own practice). On Sunday Dec 15, lazy Sunday, I taught the morning class and after breakfast I thought: Sitting and writing at the pool is a good thing to do, a new update 😊. I forgot that was Sunday, party…. So, sitting at the pool typing a new update, music coming from all sides… It’s weekend and Laos people like to celebrate it with really loud music.

Last weekend (13 & 14 December) it was Vang Vieng Music Festival; best to compare it with Concert at Sea, Zand or Pinkpop. Local and international artists (international = Thai and Singapore 😉) singing, performing, DJ-ing and hiphopping at 3 stages and 15,000 festive party poopers. 95% Laos/Asian, 5% Westerns. Loads of beer (festival is sponsored by BeerLao and Sommersby), food and most likely some marihuana, mushrooms, whiskey and wodka 😊. Sulo and I went before all had started to take some pictures (posted on social media and in the gallery); we could enter the terrain without any problems, no one asked us what we were doing. That’s a real difference compare to Holland. Everything is blocked, hard to sneak in, loads of security. For us it was nice, we took some pictures and went back. Heard someone trying to sing (one of the biggest names); the only thing I thought: stop it, it is awful! Luckily no glass around 😉. Vang Vieng is in the weekends busier, but this weekend… we had more traffic jams than on a rainy day in Holland (ok…. Exaggerating is a job an sich 😉). Even walking on the street wasn’t easy, cars parked on the pavement, motorbikes in between the open spaces, 2-way traffic on the road, with all the cars parked… it was a hard job, and you needed a lot of patience as a driver. Or.. maybe you need a charged phone, because, yeah, standing still means… What’s app, Line, Imo, Insta, Facebook, Twitter, SnappChat, watching another episode on NetFlix or YouTube.. why not? We don’t drive, do we? So, why should we bother about safety, don’t drive means you can use your phone!  Police? I have seen 1 police car in 7 weeks. And, eh, money can buy everything, can’t it 😉? Or, wait! The police are also on their phone… because they need to post on their social media how others are using their phones during driving… 😉. Welcome to Laos!

The hotel was almost fully booked thanks to the festival. The staff wasn’t so happy with that, now they needed to work a little harder, and that’s against their nature (isn’t that lovely, don’t rush, take it easy? A good thing to do in Holland, I can show you how it works 😉).

Classes this week were great, I had an amazing outdoor class! 10 people, all levels. 1 of them was an Indian man, Suresh, we went out for dinner at the only Indian restaurant in Vang Vieng 😊. Finally, something else than rice, noodles 😊 😊. Good conversations! He was practicing yoga for a long time, but due to lower back and knee problems he had to back off. He enjoyed the practice, even though he couldn’t do much. And a coincidence (I don’t believe in that, everything happens for a reason) Sulo (another yoga teacher) and Kimberly (a returning student) came in 😊.

You know what is so funny about teaching here, especially Koreans? Every time when I go out of the pose to check if everybody doing ok, they copy and paste. Now I finally understand why everything what’s made in China or Korea is so cheap, just copy and paste. We present them how it can be done, they duplicate it, cheaper because they don’t have to do all the research et voilà, off you go to Action  (well… in a nutshell, definitely there is more going on). Anyway, for teaching it is not really helpful, because I need to put them back in the pose 😊.

On my day off (Tuesday December 10) I went to the Kaeng Nyui (or Kaeng Yui) and Kaeng Lon waterfall. I walked the whole way, in total 15 kms, the road was rocky, dusty, quiet and the scenery was soooo beautiful. I took many pictures, it took me 1 hour and 45 minutes to get there (normally 7 kms is a bit more than 1 hour). But this route… amazing! A nice small village, kids playing at the school yard, rice fields, bunches of cows, mountains. And all so quiet. The waterfall was beautiful; not big or breath taking or so, but the whole picture made it perfect. I sat there for at least 30 minutes, I was the only one. Then some Koreans came in, rushed to the waterfall, took some pictures and a selfie with me (the first selfie with unknown people, after 7 weeks, a new record! Normally it takes 5 minutes 😉). The lady put herself next to me, phone in her hand, made some gestures and spoke something in Korean English of what I understood as: selfie? I nodded and whoppa, there we go 😊. After they left, it was quiet again, just a few more visitors. I didn’t swim in the water (that was really tooooo cold) but yeah, I needed to feel the cold water, so I put my feet in it. That was bearable, for 2 minutes. Then I just sat there, meditating, enjoying the view, the nature, dragon flies, water spiders, ants, little birds, plants, trees… After almost 2 hours I walked back, spoke with a Swiss guy (he pulled over with his motorbike to check how far it was), had a little chat and continued my way back.

I am really happy that it isn’t freezing anymore. We don’t need blankets anymore during savasana, or towels at the outdoor class. Yeah! So happy about that! I was really looking for gloves last week, so cold, it turned out to be 6 degrees!! Christmas will be in bikini whehehehe. Way better than in Europe, at least, for me 😊.

We were so lucky last week; there was an American pastry chef, he made some vegan pastries, mango-cheesecake and they saved something for us. And this morning, when I said goodbye, they had another vegan pastry (something with caramalised peanuts, yummy!!). I got spoiled here hihi. Like I mentioned in my last blog: I am not complaining. For me, life may be like this forever 😊😊. Can I convince anyone to join me: work less, enjoy more 😊!

Short preview for the upcoming 2,5 weeks. Until Dec 29 I will be in Vang Vieng, teaching. December 30, 31 and January 1 I am in Luang Prabang (still Laos). On Jan 1, 6am (local time) I am at the airport, checking in to Vientiane, and if everything is according plan, transit to Colombo, Sri Lanka. The transit time is short and I need to check in again, immigration and security… but I will make it 😊. I have 2 hours (European, not Laos, Laos hours = 3 😉). I will start teaching at Polwaththa Ecolodges in Digana, close to the jungle, for 2 months (or maybe longer, depends on the tourists and also my visa). After Sri Lanka… I don’t know yet, maybe first visit India and head north to Nepal, Tibet, Myanmar, to continue my trip in Asia (hopefully teaching yoga or else Workaway (which means free accommodation and food in exchange for some work)). I am trying to visit countries I haven’t visited yet, and there a lot of countries I haven’t visited yet 😊. But I will just go with the flow, because life it too short to plan everything ahead.

Well, this is it for this week! You can also keep me updated about your life. Don’t say it’s the same everyday, because it is not. Every day is a new day, every day is special, it’s a present, right here, right now, so let’s seize it today 😊.

With love,
littlemissyoga

P.S: New pictures will follow soon 🙂