So far the Shreyas retreat has come as close to my idea of an ideal way to live as I have ever experienced.
Set in the lush Indian countryside it has beautifully landscaped gardens, a yoga pavilion, lovely swimming pool and little tree-houses where you can chant, or just chill and read a book.
The food is outstanding; all vegetarian Indian. There is no alcohol but actually I don’t even mind.
The day begins at 7am with yoga, then breakfast then meditation and chanting. Following this there is free time until lunch when I work on the novel, have almost written 5000 words, not bad considering my brain is a little mushy to say the least. There is another yoga session at 4 and then dinner at 8. Dinner is in the garden, candlelit.
There are lovely touches all around, like flowers strewn on the tables and every time you take your shoes off to go inside someone comes and turns them around for when you come out again.
My friend Carla has arrived and it is lovely to be with her. There are also some lovely people staying here. I guess in a yoga retreat you’re unlikely to get any real plonkers.
OK there are times when I want to giggle, like this morning when I was sitting cross-legged with my fingers in my ears chanting. Happily Carla was in another class (the easier one, natch) so didn’t see me or I would have collapsed.
But most of the time I am really into the whole experience; the exercise, the breathing, the chanting and the feeling of total and utter blissful relaxation. They say in the literature that a holiday is actually a holy day. I’m not religious but this is as close to holy as I have ever felt. I can’t believe we have another week to go…..