I was honored to spend the retreat with nine other participants from Australia, Canada, Europe and the United States, and quite humbled that three of my Ottawa students made the long treck to Bali to participate. We opened the retreat at Studio Wayan at the Yoga Barn on the Friday with a beautiful flower mandala which decorated the room, and every participant received an "Offering" basket with what they would need for the week: a journal, hand-pillows, spa certificate, the agenda for the week, and some printed materials about Bali. Every day was inspired by a theme which was reflected in the meditations, yoga classes, excursions and group workshops and activities. I also had my participants do some research about the Balinese culture to present at the end of the retreat. Everyone who participated brought something to the retreat, and I learned something from everyone. When we closed the retreat on March 22 (with another beautiful flower mandala) and we shared our experiences for the week and shared their insights about what they learned while being in Bali such as the importance of the rice fields, some insights on Hindu culture, the story of hanoman, the significance of offerings and the tradition on how children are named based on the order they are born.
I just love Bali. I find it such an easy and magical place to visit. Even though things may not go according to plan... (like losing your passport for the first four days of your trip, drinking water from the tap and not feeling so great, losing your voice half-way through the retreat, and trying to teach a quiet restorative class while there is an ecstatic dance party with hundreds of people in the studio next door...) ... things still have a way of working out.
I am so appreciative of the opportunity to have hosted this retreat at the Yoga Barn. I learn so much from the places I visit, and the people that I meet along the way. Until next time. Namaste.