Dogs and cigarettes

Last year this time, I was in a bit of a funk.  Plodding ahead, staring at my feet, wondering why things weren’t they way they were sposedta be.  Those Sposedtas and Yoga Fairies are pretty strong this time of year.

A wonderful women and amazing yogi, Catherine Chapman, pulled me out of the house to see Wah! in concert at Rusty’s studio.   I had mixed feelings about going.  My own funk, history with Rusty, blah, blah, blah….  She cut through the crap and told me to get out of the house.

I’m really lucky to have her in my life.

It was a beautiful & wet night.  I got there early.  Rock star parking was waiting for me.

I sat in my car for a bit and people watched.  The few people who went by were very interesting.  I saw a guy across the street walking his dog.  Cigarette smoke occasionally came from under his umbrella as he stood under the street light.  Another guy, with no umbrella, came walking up on my side of the street.   He stopped and tried to light a cigarette in the rain.  It didn’t work well.  He looked up and saw the smoking man and called out for help with a light.

As I watched him run across the street towards the man with the dog, I felt a little warm and happy to be there.  I got to watch two strangers come together in a moment.  They hunched closely under the umbrella.  Each with a cigarette in his mouth, using the lit cigarette to light the unlit one.

With cigarettes lit, they chatted for a bit.  The dog got a little attention.  And, they went their separate ways.

There’s really nothing like dogs and cigarettes to bring strangers together in an instantly intimate way.

Sometimes yoga brings people together.  Sometimes it doesn’t.

“Say hello to someone you don’t know.”

Ugh.  Teachers who start their classes that way get the face from me.  You know, that face that says seriously.

They’re trying to pull us out of our shells, the same way Catherine did for me that night.

They’re trying to create an intimate moment, like the two men with the cigarettes.

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t…but we should always give it a try.  On and off the mat.  Even without a dog or a cigarette.

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