We knew very few things before we got to the park, but one thing we were sure about was that we’d love the yoga, and that turned out to be the case. One of the instructors, Ximena, had been practicing artistic yoga since a little girl and this was what she was teaching. It was the first time I was experiencing this type of yoga and it was love at first practice! Takur had his own style as well and his classes were tough yet a lot of fun! He’d carefully correct us when we were not doing a posture correctly and many times he’d resolve to just laughing out loud at one or the other’s interesting positions. He had a few signature phrases that we were expecting every time in the class and we even started using them outside of the yoga class: ‘Softly, without pressure, relaxing, without forcing’ (most of the times for postures most of us found anything but relaxing), ‘Next posture is same. Only different’, and ‘Oh, I haven’t done this posture in 7 years’. He loved to focus on meditation and that was definitely much welcomed after 4 hours of physical work each day. There were a couple of other teachers as well, the ‘nuns’ of the ashram (Mothers, as they called them) all with different styles, so we much enjoyed the variety!
One thing we were not sure how we’d feel about before we got there was the food. But once we had our first meal we became completely at peace – it was going to be one of the best things about being in the park! They cooked vegan food almost all the time, with a few exceptions when they used some milk or cheese. We lost count of how many times we said ‘Oh, i’ve never seen/eaten this before’ and the omnipresent ‘Oh my dear God, this food is from Heaven!’. Most of the veggies were coming from the eco garden, so they were all organic and fed with love – that surely made a difference to the taste of the food! Our favorites were the homemade wholemeal buns, oven baked just before breakfast. Together with the baked apples and the lemon/mint/eucalyptus tea, they were definitely a very nice way to welcome the day! Boca worked in the kitchen for a few days and did her best to pay attention to all the details and identify all the secrets (one of them was apparently curry haha). Other people were taking notes and writing about each meal in their daily journals. It was maddness!
Oh, and then there was pizza party night. That was sooome night indeed!! It was always on a Friday and everybody was looking forward to it as if it were a barbecue night in a vegan place. That pizza was definitely a strong reason for thinking ‘thank God it’s Friday!’ Even the meat eaters confessed that it was one of the best pizzas they had ever had! It was cooked especially for us by one of the neighbors and they always made tons of it to make sure nobody was left unsatisfied. It was a sinful night indeed…
The other thrilling thing in terms of food was the organic dairy farm at the back of the yoga park. They had, without exagerating, the best yogurt any of us (not only the 3 of us, but literally everybody in the park) had ever eaten before. And if you combined that with the organic dulce de leche (a type o caramel-like sweet) for a ncie afternoon snack, you’d really need nothing else from life. The owners were adorable people, we once made a ‘field trip’ there, about 14 of us, and the husband was home alone. He said his wife is usually in charge of giving the visitors a tour, but it seemed they had gotten the roles mixed up because our man spent 2 hours taking us around the entire farm, explaining us processes in detail and answering all our questions. It seemed like he had been born for this purpose alone, and we felt so inspired by his passion and love for what he was doing. That on top of all the knowledge we got about cows, milk and dairy products. A very educational and enjoyable field trip it was!:)
This was a Hare Krishna place and the beliefs, rituals and practices were not foreign at all to Boca and me, as we had both come in contact with them before, be it in India or in Singapore. Silviu seemed to be the most fascinated by them and very quickly started to study all that he could about the Hare Krishnas, starting with the Bhagavad Gita. He had read the Bible, Coran, Talmud, Snow White and every other story book out there, and he was now so excited about putting the pieces together into one big story that made perfect sense to him. Must admit he came up with some very intersting ideas not only about how they are all talking about the same thing from different perspectives, but a bunch of other insights he might actually share with the world at some point or another, be it through this blog or any other.
Three days after we got there he decided to shave his head. We were happy with that decision as we had been threatening him with the scissors for a while, but decided to spare him until we got to warmer weather (being hairless in Patagonia is probably not the smartest idea). The day after that he woke up at 5 for the morning meditation. This time we started to get a bit worried, and talked about how the next day he’d start wearing the orange robe and the day after that he’d say good-bye and dissapear to India for a few months… or years. Fortunately he did not move on to the orange robe, but continued waking up at 5am for the rest of the time we were there. ‘Good for you!’ was all we had to say!
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