First came the "Namaste Day" event that my wife
Besides, she promised I'd have fun.
By the time we left, we were exhausted. Unfortunately, we couldn't come straight home because we needed some cat food (which can only be picked up at the pet food store, thanks to special dietary needs of the littlest carnivore in the family) and a refill on meds for the daughter (which can only be picked up from the pharmacy) and hey, I wanted some beer (which can't be picked up at either the pet food store or the pharmacy) and so we had not one, and not two, but three stops to make on the way. The thought, tired as I was, made me want to whine.
We managed to successfully make those stops, though, and with a minimum of whining, and so finally, exhausted, we pulled into our garage.
And there the neighbor was, outside, washing his car.
Now, first of all, I like my neighbors. I like them quite a lot, in fact. I've not lived anyplace where I've had such explicitly neighborly neighbors in a long, long time. Yes, they're very Southern, and yes, they have just as many quirks as any other set of neighbors would have, but they make it clear that they sincerely care about having a good neighborhood and about their neighbors. It's--well, it's heart-warming.
But not when we're tired. Especially not when we're exhausted but yet there's no way for this curmudgeon to sneak a great big Jeep Commander into the garage without him noticing as he washes his car a narrow alleyway away.
Not, um, that I would do such a sneaky thing, but I have to admit that the thought crossed my mind.
Tired or no, I had a neighborly obligation to wander across the alley to say hi while the wife and daughter got everything from the different stores into the house. But then, they surprised me by joining us outside. As did the neighbor's wife. As did the other neighbors. Before long, we had a full-on neighbor party in beach and lawn chairs in the alley separating the rows of homes. Soon the sun went down, dragging the temperature with it. Individually we all went indoors to pile more clothes on, nobody willing to call it quits before anybody else--especially not us, since we'd made it known that we'd come back home to the South from Alaska.
"Cold? What cold? I spent fourteen years in Alaska; this isn't cold. Let me tell you about the time I was tromping through three feet of snow and met the grizzly bear tromping the other way--," is hard to say when your teeth are chattering, but by goodness I managed.
Sheesh. I finally managed to end it at about 10:00 pm. Like I said, I like my neighbors a lot, but not so much when I'm cold, tired, and cranky.
What got me so tired in the first place, though, was an interesting experience. Yes, I'd been dragged (though neither kicking nor screaming, I admit) to the festival. Namaste! I honestly hadn't wanted to go; instead, I'd wanted to sit and work on a book. Heide pointed out, though, that being outside the house was what provided me with a lot of my writing inspiration, and she was absolutely correct.
Therefore, Namaste! For those unfamiliar with the term, it means "I bow to the divine/light/whatever within you." It's probably the most commonly-used term in yoga, ranking, as I suspect it must, even over the true building block terms of yoga which include "tadasana," "downward facing dog,"and "put your elbow in the other ear now."
To be honest, I enjoyed my stay there, at least till I got namaste-ed out. I mean, there's only so much 'bowing without really bowing to the divine in so many other people that I never met before' that an old cranky curmudgeon like me can take. After a while, I was just plain tired of not-really-bowing.
That, and there are always a great many wonderful people to meet at these types of events, which means your "nice to see you" smile is always burning. At the same time, there are always a few people there who creep me the hell out. If you've been to one, you know what I'm talking about.
Anyway, we arrived just in time to pay my entrance cost (ten dollars; the girls had already attended the evening previous and thus were already paid for) and head to the session on Automatic Writing. It was an interesting session; a woman with vibrantly blue hair and sequined hat and scarf who identified herself as a Reverend lectured us on the process of asking an archangel for help answering a Deep and Important question and then writing the answer for 20 minutes.
Now, you know me by this point in the post, I hope. If so, you're aware that the next thing I'm'a gonna say pretty much has to be snarky, or else the curmudgeon in me is gonna explode. Still, as much snark as I could possibly apply to the situation, the fact was that the whole Automatic Writing gig worked when I tried it. She set the timer, and I asked the archangel for help with a particular situation, and then I sat and wrote down some of the clearest thoughts I've had on the topic. Impressive, that. Was it the archangel I'd called for, or my subconscience, or the memory of all the episodes I've watched of Dr. Phil while spending time with my beloved one that brought the newer, deeper, richer understanding? I don't know, and it doesn't really matter. Point is, it worked.
Maybe Dr. Phil is the archangel?
Sorry, that was snarky.
The next session was even more meaningful. In it, the presenter told us (basically) that we get back from the universe what we put out into it. Reap what you sow, yadda yadda, and all that stuff, but it made a lot of sense based on the negativity surrounding a lot of the move we just made and what has happened to us since. Yeah, I know, duh and all that, but she had some useful techniques for transforming negative vibes into positive ones to send out into the universe. The important fact is that I left with some great notes regarding how to react to negative situations in the future.
We attended a couple of other sessions that seemed a bit less useful to me than the others had, and then we listened to a couple of fairly young guys describing astrology in a way I've not heard it before. If true, it puts current events into a light that, juxtaposed against past events in similar astrological circumstances, is interesting at best and alarming at worst. It had to do with something I'd not heard of before called a "square"--yes, I know what a square is, silly, but not in this context. I'll have to do my own research on it.
Was humorous, too, hearing them pronouncing the--well, the name of the next to last planet. You know, Uranus. "Your'-uh-nus" is how they said it, and it took me a sec to, um, square that with the way we were taught to say it in high school. Finally somebody else asked a question about the "square of Pluto and 'your-ay'-nus'" and I thought I was gonna explode in childish glee.
I didn't, though. My lovely bride has some elbows, she does. Effective deterrence, they are.
All that said, by the end of the afternoon I'd taken in quite a lot more than I had thought I would, or could. I was really ready to go. I was just flat namaste-ed out.