Confession: I am deeply, madly in love with our neighbor.
To the north.
Specifically, Canada. And even more specifically, Vancouver.
And wouldn't you fall in love too? After seeing this:
I won't go on about how I loved Air Canada (But I did). I am a sucker for a big tv on a plane with lots of entertainment options to keep me distracted from the powerpoints that I should have been working on. After all, this is a WORK TRIP. And, believe me, there have been hours and hours of work, but also, some fun:
|This is a relieved corporate yogi, after delivering a big presentation. |
|I was SO excited to see this. Luckily, my coworkers are obliging to my constant "take my picture" requests. |
I love the Olympics!
|In the treeptop terrace at the Capilano Bridge - absolutely beautiful forest just outside Vancouver. |
But in addition to being beautiful, clean, full of forest and water and all other sorts of nature, Canada has got its yoga on.
I'll admit it. I used several hours of my only free day for a small pilgrimage. Lululemon Athletica was started in Vancouver. I love lululemon, and I'm not ashamed of it. They have wonderful products and as a company, embrace good corporate citizenship. And ladies and gentlemen, no matter what side of the lulu fence you may find yourself on, they make a great pair of pants. Pants - I might add - that initially were $150 when Lululemon started with just 57 customers. So when you are pulling on those groove pants, think of what a discount it is from the original! Major sarcasm, but still. I enjoyed going to the Lulu lab - where young designers create lines of lululemon that are almost exclusively for Vancouver - pieces in very small quantities - 10 to 20 - with some of the designs going into major production for the larger company. I now have a one-of-a-kind lulu circle scarf, which is fun - and useful for San Francisco. Finally, I took a trip to Kitsilano, a cute neighborhood across the water from downtown Vancouver, where the original Lulu is:
|The original lulu!|
|One of lulu's most loyal fans. |
And it hasn't been all about dressing for yoga. I popped into several really neat studios all around my foot tour of the city - and stopped into say hi and see what kinds of yoga Canadians are practicing. More of a mix between Hatha and Vinyasa - but also lots of meditation and kundalini. Had this been a personal trip - I definitely would have sought out some Forrest :o). Luckily, I found a great yoga studio just blocks from my hotel for my practicing this week. And much like my love affair with Vancouver, I'm also in love with this place:
|Catching myself in the picture. |
|flow wellness in Vancouver|
Flow Wellness: Beautiful facilities, gracious staff and an overall wonderful experience. Friendly! I did the two week special because I am taking more than one class this week. And it comes with mat rental, yogitoes-type rental, and a towel - all included every time for the first two weeks! How awesome is that? Even the drop in fee was fairly reasonable at $15 if you chose to go that route. And I actually liked the mat cover a LOT - because it was thinner than my regular yogitoes - and softer - so I might pick one up before I leave. I took a power class today, even though I was really missing the slowness and stillness of Forrest. I love it when the universe steps in - the teacher introduced the class by saying that she was taking it in a different direction - holding poses for a long time so we could "really feel" what the pose does to our body. It was a great class - small because the weather was so unbelievably nice outside.
And I loved the quote that she closed with from Marianne Williamson:
"Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are."
Canada and I can be in this loving relationship for three more days. And even though I'll be running around in a suit 10 hours a day, I'm hoping to squeeze in some time for one more practice (or maybe 2). And yes, I'll be wearing my lulu.