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Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Being Where I Am Retreat 19-20 March 2011
Something didn't agree with Jaimie at dinner and she paid for it most of the night. I so hoped she would be ok in the morning. When we all woke up Jaimie was feeling good. We had breakfast (cheated with 1/4 of a waffle) then we all went back to the room. The hotel seemed brand new. There was a building across the street with a water wheel.
Everything that follows came out of my journal. Want to share my entire experience. We are off on an adventure to Wattle Hollow Retreat Center. A weekend of meditation, yoga and silence. There were 17 people attending. Joy to lead us through meditation and Mark to lead us through yoga. Mark owns Dripping Springs Farm near Berryville, Arkansas.
We were supposed to arrived at Wattle Hollow about 10:00 am. We left the hotel at 9:15. We drove another 30 miles or so arriving about 10:00.
Greeted Joy and felt immediately welcomed. Signed in and signed up to be the "bellringer" for the weekend. I figured if I couldn't talk I could still be noisy. Joy gave us our room assignments and showed us around.
Peggy, Michaelle and I are in Sea World, Jaimie is in Cobb Castle (for the plumbing). Peggy is downstairs and Michaelle and I are upstairs on the other side. Most of the buildings are handmade, there are compost toilets very commune style. Sea World is pretty. There are fishes swimming through the walls. Turtles floating about. Table and chairs, miniature Earth Mother, curving natural staircase. Stained glass everywhere.
As soon as my things were in my room and the truck parked "up top" Jaimie, Michaelle and I went to the creek. I am glad we went then because that is the only time we had down there. I went barefoot. Sat in the middle of the creek on the boulders and put my feet in. It was invigoratingly COLD!!! We hurried back up to the meeting room.
It was time for lunch. Sweet potato soup, salad, one fig newton & 1 piece of bread. It was all wonderful. Everything is organic/vegetarian. The food was put on a mat on the floor and you ate where you wanted to. Joy suggested we put our fork down between each bite and no chattering (so the silence begins). This is going to be a wonderful weekend!
That was fun!!! Now was the time for meditation. It lasted for three hours. Not continual but in 20 or 30 minute increments. It was hard. I was sleepy and sitting up. Have to find a focus. Not sure at this time that I liked sitting meditation but I loved WALKING slow meditation. Though still I didn't have good focus. Snakes and lizards intruded and ruined my focus. I am finding that sitting still is hard............... almost impossible. I can do this.
another 20 minute break and then Yoga again.... this time it was "Yen" postures. Letting gravity do its job. Hold...... Hold.... breathe............. breathe. Think Jaimie will get ideas from this for wall/mat yoga.
Supper is cooking I can smell it. I must ring the gong. Time for dinner. STARVING! Not sure what it is yet but smells good and I am sure I will cheat again. Yes.... coconut tofu with ginger sauce, salad and something :) also seed cake with Thai sauce. Wonderful. It was delicious.
We have 30 minutes before the next session........ not enough time for the creek :(. Joy spoke about meditation. The stages, the hindrances, how to focus. We meditated more. It was beginning to get easier. I want to figure out how to do this more than once a year. I am feeling myself come together. As we meditated the moon was rising (it was the brightest and biggest full moon in years) About 9:30 we went outside for Joy to release us for the evening. Moon was HUGE in the sky. Joy invited us to come and watch sunrise. As we were leaving the coyotes were howling in the woods, there was an owl flying about. Frogs jumping in the garden.