In Berkeley 

Yoga and Addiction is such a grim dark subject (NOT!), I had to counter it by upping my happiness quotient through good deeds – meaningful actions.  Got the above  for a teen who accompanied me to assist an Adaptive Yoga class at UC Berkeley Friday. 

So a little reward for spending 2+ hours on campus just observing yoga teachers aiding an Adaptive Yoga class.  To assist one must be min 18 years old so – unfortunately he could not help. I worked with 30-something young lady and her caretaker – This thirty-something, why don’t we call her “Anna” is normally wheelchair bound and has a conputer monitor to convey her words as Anna cannot speak. Yet she squeals  in joy when some movement or touch feels good to her – I learned a lot from Anna.Thank you Anna for allowing me to figure things out about our body and mind; what’s normal, what’s the new normal … what is it like to not have freedom and control over one’s motor functions. 

After the class – went to North Berkeley and stumbled into a French bakery. Treated this well-meaning teen to a Raspberry Dark Chocolate Cake – ahhh could not resist taking a little bite – ouuuuu – so sweet. Anyone addicted to sugar? That’s an addiction – food addiction, alcohol addiction, screen-addiction, hedonistic addictions, prescription drugs addictions … there are many kinds of addictions us weak mortals exhibit destructive behaviors with – why is that? How would a yoga practice help ? It’s an interesting module full of surprises. How does a mindfulness practice inherent in a yoga practice help heal?

*** Next months’s module is “Adaptive Yoga” and here we are, doing our homework before that actual intensive …

When Cal students come back, then these yoga students are in for a real treat as there will be such high ratio of assistants. Yeah hooray they get to get out of that wheelchair and move their limbs! You will be lifted out of immobility !!! 

Experience that freedom to feel alive ! That we all take for granted. 

Thank you for a valuable experience. 

Summer Sweets

If you are asked about summer sweets, in the US, it’s ice cream, sherbet and icee shaved ice …popsicles comes to mind. But in Japan? What about in Japan? All the above and the traditional sweets that are low in calories and high in refined flavors and cool textures (chewy, slippery, icy, juicy …refreshing!)

When super hot and humid, what do the Japanese in me crave?sweets

Or on the top of the list would be this !

sweets2green

The top is “Kuzukiri”, a cool refreshing dessert made of kuzu-jello cut into pasta-like stips floating on ice, you dip into brown sugar syrup. Slurp the icy cold jello pasta … cooling the entire over-heated system. Perfect when hot and muggy …I have not had this for years but dream of it whenever hot.

The second is “Kakigouri”, a shaved ice mountain with green tea/matcha syrup. Granished with Shiratama-a mini mochi-like balls and inside is a red-bean paste filling. Ahhhh, to die for …The shaved ice is fluffy and soft like first fresh coat of snow of the ski season … yes, still soft like spring gardening soil, not hardened by an icey surface.

Having said all this – did I actually have them in Japan ?
No, I missed out. Too busy caring for other’s welfare. It’s okay. There’s another time as …
I will be back. I will be back hopefully for a good reason – like to celebrate the restored health of a loved one.

Isn’t this pretty?

sweetsstraw

Healing thoughts going to those weakened by heat and humidity.
Self-care can come in a form of low calorie cooling sweet treats that give you a little energy boost.
When feeling a bit wilted and beaten, it’s these small delights that can turn around a bad day into a day filled with gratitude. You’ve got to treat yourself.

Gelato?
Lemonade?

Just Iced Tea? It’s all good. We all need a little lift.
Recharged – ready to tackle the day!

@ Tokyo St Luke’s Hospital

People are like stained glass windows.They sparkle and shine when the sun is out but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within. 

– Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

My mother is out of ICU and on the mend thanks to great doctors and nurses here in the middle of Tokyo. 

Recovered enough to visit this chapel located in the older building of this modern hospital. I’m getting a work out pushing a wheel chair – thanks mom for this learning opportunity ! Quite  nice for your biceps and triceps when there’s little time for chatarangas, yoga version of push up through the sun salutation – a daily rituals are nice to keep wherever you are.