Writing and editing

David is in CPH, but not me. And while I am happy to not be on a plane with the baby, it makes me a bit sad that I don’t get to spend time there and see all the great peeps we met last year.

We Skyped yesterday, and he told me about his day.

David: I ate a chocolate bar today.

Stan; Good for you.

D: Yeah, I went down to the water and walked around. And I ate a chocolate bar.

S: Well, there is only one of you.

D: I felt like a pervert. I mean, it isn’t perverted to look at the water and eat chocolate. But I felt like a pervert. Do you know what I mean?

It is a funny feeling when you are so used to being around other people and all of a sudden you are not. I felt like that a bit when I went out for the first time without the baby. I had gone to the hardware store, just a few blocks from my house. When I went in there, everyone treated me like a regular human being. No one held the door, or let me go ahead of them in line or helped me pick something up. After 9 months of pregnancy and then a month of caring around this little thing, I suddenly felt distinctly unspecial. I almost announced to the cashier, “I have a baby!”

Now I enjoy going out without the baby and being all regular again. I like helping moms who are struggling with their strollers or the door or whatever. I have also become that creepy person who asks strange moms a million questions about their kids, “How old is she? What size shoe does she wear? Oh yeah, is she walking yet? How does she sleep?” I am such a nightmare.

My shoulder feels better worse better. I am still blaming the baby, although I have a feeling I should blame my hunchback.

We are having such a fabulous time. It is a postcard perfect city populated by supermodels. We just need a great vegan restaurant or bakery here, and I need to make a bajillion dollars so I can afford a cup of coffee – then it will be perfect.

Yesterday I had another lovely practice with Mikko and we went to Elsinore.

So, the Dane didn’t really live here. I think the actual story  of Prince Amled is a bit more Viking and bloody. But it was fun to walk around the large drafty castle, and you can kind of imagine the boredom that would set in during a long, dark Danish winter.

There is another castle with cannons pointing towards the North Sea on the other side of the strait and both would work together to catch every ship that passed in 400 years. Eventually, an American ship refused to pay the tax and the whole racket crumbled. Leave it to the Scadunavuans to ingeniusly tax everyone, and the Americans to consider it resolutely undemocratic.

Every year at the castle features new performances of Hamlet in the courtyard. There was a Taliban Hamlet, which might be interesting from the Polonius and Ophelia perspective. There was also a poster for Hamlet without words, which seems a bit like cooking without food – but whatever.

We also went into the casements where the king stored food, soldiers and prisoners. We saw the cell that was built in a triangular shape and the bars would be slowly, week by week, be pushed in towards the corner until the prisoner was stuck in the corner. It felt creepy and sad to be in a place designed to be mean to someone else.

In super genius news, Holden has learned how to pick up his squish toy and put it in his mouth. Harvard, here we come!


I will have to start singing the song that Mercedes taught me, “Dontcha put it in your mouth, dontcha put it in your mouth – unless you ask a grown up first.”
Now we are visiting Uncle Pat in Malmo staying in such a swanky hotel. We have hardwood floors in our room to practice on! Friday we take the train to Stockholm.

I practiced today with at AYStudio. Mikko is a fantastic teacher. He is a gentle adjuster, but he has a lot of power behind each adjustment. Copenhagen is lucky to have him.

We walked around the city today with Patrick. We took a boat ride and saw the Queen’s residence.

I took a picture of my new house. For insurance reasons.

We love Uncle Pat, but the walking tour was pretty tiring.

Yesterday, David came home and told me that we would be going out of town on Tuesday to see a castle.

“Oh yeah.” I said.

“Where the Dane lived.” David said.

“Helsingør!”

Ok. So Hamlet is in my permanent top 5, ever since I reread it in university. I know people say the Tempest and King Lear are more mature blah blah. But I think Hamlet is Shakespeare’s masterpiece. It has it all: death, depression, love, rivalry, blood. It is also describes pretty accurately that feeling of growing up and realizing you are just not the person you had hoped to be. I love Hamlet so much, I often don’t take the opportunity to see the play because I am afraid it won’t be good. Around my house, he is called “the Dane” after Monty’s speech in Withnail and I.

So excited.

Holden took his maiden voyage on Thursday night and he did beautifully. I was a bit worried about jet lag but he slept well last night and looked actually pleased when I wrapped him up like a glowworm doll in the glorious miracle blanket. Do you remember glowworm dolls?

It is uncanny really.

Robin and Mikko are taking very good care of us and the Astanga Yoga Studio is the studio of our dreams. If AYCT suddenly asploded and we got lots of money to rebuild it, I would make it just like AYStudio CPH. They have numbered spots for mat storage. Numbered spots! David and I have  been discussing this at length.

Robin commented in the last post that he would take us by the hand and show us all the best spots in CPH. He actually took Holden by the hand tonight and put him to sleep. The greatest!

The city is painfully beautiful, the people are excessively good looking and everyone here is so ridiculously fashionable they laugh and laugh when we walk by with our gnome backpack.

I woke up this morning trying to figure out a way to live here and have an apartment on the 4th floor with unfinished floors and white everywhere else and ride around on a “Milk Plus” bicycle.

We are staying in a 5-story walk-up with a lovely Danish woman and her son. Their home is uncluttered and perfect. David’s brother asked us to bring some maple syrup for him and of course the bottle broke somewhere over the Atlantic covering everything in sticky brown. We got to Loa’s flat literally dripping syrup all over her floors and spent the first three hours in Denmark washing clothes and running back and forth to the bathroom washing off the bags, diapers, the yoga mat…. Considering our very Canadian entrance she has been nothing but welcoming and helpful.

I had my first bowl of muesli this morning. Loa was scoffed at my store bought variety – but it was the best bowl of cereal I have ever had. It had whole macademia nuts. Whole macademia nuts! The front of the package said nothing about macademia nuts. It did say “Dinkel Super “, which is why I bought it. But what in North America could you buy with whole macademia nuts besides, well,whole macademia nuts. Anyway, it was crazy good, store bought and all.

We have walked around the city centre a little and after David finishes his workshop we are taking the little owl to see Bob Dylan’s Brazil series at the National Art Gallery and to visit Kristiania. I am excited to be a tourist here.

The biggest challenge is reading the Danish ingredients on the back of chocolate bars and cookies to see if they contain milk or eggs. Because I am really quite ignorant, I try to read everything phonetically and relate it to the closest word in English. This works for the package of Cashew nødder – ristet og saltet that I bought the other day. Reading novels is a bit more challenging – but I think I am doing Ok. Right now I am reading a novel by Cormac McCarthy translated  into Danish called Vejen. It is about a vegan dad and his son who are somewhat inexplicably in a land without vegan food. They run away from omnivores and keep telling themselves how good they are for staying vegan. In the end, the son finds a new vegan family because his dad doesn’t seem to be getting enough protein.

More pictures to come!

I finished primary last week. Everything seems to be in working order. Only one leg will stay behind my head in Supta Kurmasana and by the time I get there, I am so pooped I can’t quite jump out of bakasana without the little cheating toe touch. I can do my dropbacks and I feel some, but not a lot of sensation in the front of my body around the incision. The biggest difference in my post-surgery practice is not being able to pick up in between navasanas. I have talked to a few c-section ladies, I haven’t talked to one who can do it yet. Does anyone, out there in interweb-land, know of a post c-section successful pickup practice? I am also hella stiff from collapsing into my back as I cart around the enormous vegan monster baby. My hamstrings are unforgiving, but that seems pretty mutable.

Speaking of carting around a monster – we bought one of these:

Word. I can put the baby down! At the moment he is having a nap, not on my chest, but on his own. Glory be. The biggest achievement so far of my mommy career is getting rid of the lame elephant mobile the swing came with and outfitting it with a smily baby face/veggie rattle/shiny heart mobile. Who wants to stare at elephant ass while trying to go to sleep?

Holden, David and I are preparing for our big trip to Copenhagen and Stockholm in less than a week. David will be teaching at the Astanga Yoga Studio in Copenhagen and yogayama in Stockholm. I have been in baby land and focusing more on logistics of flying with a two-month-old.  But really, thank the lord for Scandinavians. A seemingly complicated trip has been made so comfortable and effortlessly organized.

For example, David and I realized in a panic the other day that Mikko from Astanga Yoga Studio was picking us up and we weren’t going to have a car seat for the baby. We thought about options and whether we should just go ahead and lug a car seat around for two weeks. David wrote to Mikko, and of course, Mikko had thought of it (before even we had considered it) and had arranged to have a car seat fitted into the ride (cue angelic music). So fantastic!

The emails David and Eva from yogayama have been exchanging would restore even the most cynical person’s faith in human kindness. Eva is beyond sweet. And of course we are so looking forward to catching up with Laruga and David who have been incredibly supportive and awesome. When we were in Mysore together I was trying to keep up with the boys and and their appetites. Now that I am nursing, I am pretty sure I can go head to head with the two Davids. Woot! I love eating!

Because I am lazy and distrustful of the interweb, I would love tourist suggestions for Sweden and Denmark. Let me know if you have any advice – things I can do with a monster baby.

He enjoys: moving, looking at light fixtures and breastfeeding. He dislikes: not moving, breastmilk in a bottle, and stupid doctors. Ok, I just added in that last one.

We had led class on Monday to make up for the Sunday moon day, and today was the first day back to mysore-style. My led class yesterday was pretty tough. I had two days off and I felt heavy and stiff. It was insanely packed in the shala and I knocked my head a couple of times on the wall during garbha pindasana. I was happy to get a safe wall spot and the woman beside me was super sweet.

Led primary in Mysore. When I think about how to describe it, it really sounds like the opposite of something a sane person would ever want to do. I show up at the shala at 5am, 45 minutes early, and to sit on the stairs to get a spot when the doors open. When the 4:30am class finishes and the narrow doorway opens, there is a rush of people, elbowing and pushing their way to get in. It is terrifically yogic. Once inside, you set your mat down and wait for someone to come and put their mat basically on top of yours. For the rest of the class, you go through a series of complex geometric calculations, “If I put my leg here, where will he put his leg?/If the person to the right of me moves forward , but the person to the left of me moves back – where can I put my head?” Sometimes, you luck out and the people next to you are small and careful. Sometimes, you are next to a tall, careful person. And sometimes you end up next to someone who feels it is his way or Afghanistan and you spend the next 90 minutes trying to avoid being hit or crushed. David said the led classes are more like a sport than anything else. Australian rugby, cage fighting, led primary at KPJAYI – it is all the same thing.

Anyway, there was none of that on Monday. But I was happy to get back to my practice today.  I think tomorrow will feel even better.

Today we had lunch with Mikko and Helena from Ashtanga Yoga Studio in Copenhagen. David is planning to teach there in September. They are both so lovely, I am really excited to visit. Here is a picture of the good looking Scandinavians.

Helena taught me how to pronounce Copenhagen, which sounds to me a little like Coop-en-haown – with the final “n” acting as more of an idea than a letter in the name. I have to practice.  And of course, Helena said Toronto like a native right away – Ta-ron-oo.

On a different note, this will probably shock and amaze all my dear readers, but did you know if you google “cockroach vampires”, this site is the first to come up? Totally unexpected. I might be a pioneer in the field. I thought briefly about making a Stephanie Meyers-esque series with teeanage cockroach vampires. Not sure if it is as appealing an idea as sparkly, brooding, vampire boyfriends. I guess some people like them.

YouTube Preview Image

And you just know that everyone featured in that video has read the Twilight books at least twice. Crossover potential!