Saturday, November 9, 2013

Hollywood North

Vancouver is often called Hollywood North because they film a lot of movies and TV shows up here. Sometimes just walking down the street you can see trailers and offices because somewhere nearby they're filming. Usually, you don't see too much of what they're filming though. My parents saw something down by Granville Island when they were here, but I had yet to see anything. So, I thought it was really cool when we drove past filming at a nearby coffee shop on my way to work. They were still there on my way home, so I snapped these sketchy photos from across the street.

Since we were also in the spirit at my trailers near Halloween, we made our own "prop", so I could have a cubicle-mate. We named him Steve after the engineer that used to sit across from me and he even has real Steve's likeness (thanks to my artistic skills). Fake Steve is alright, but doesn't bring me snacks like real Steve used to.

Another (unrelated to movies thing) that I was able to do this week was go see David Saint-Jacques speak at UBC. He's part of one of the latest astronaut classes and has quite the resume. The boyfriend thought it was something that I would like and it was great! Right now, David is working for NASA, usually with robotics. Unfortunately, UBC is very far away from the airport (especially on transit), so I was a little late.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Kundalini Yoga

So, after being on a yoga hiatus since Sparks started up again, I decided to suck it up and buy some yoga classes (it also helped that there was a sweet Groupon deal on at the time). Normally, I believe that I do hatha yoga, which is what most people think of when they think of yoga. Well, with my new fancy pass, I could go to ANY and ALL yoga classes I wanted (up to 10 classes). I heard about kundalini yoga and thought that I might as well give it a try . . . just because I can. Also, it started later than the hatha yoga, so I had a chance to have a snack after work. Priorities.

I got my brand new pass all set up and was quite surprised to see how many people were coming into the lobby for a 7:30 pm class on a Friday night. Oh yeah, this was all after I couldn't find the studio because it's hidden inside the lobby of some sort of office building. One of the employees showed me around and then asked if I had ever tried kundalini yoga before. When I said that I hadn't, she told me that it would be a lot of fun and there would even be a dance party! Um, what?

So, the other class finally let out and we could go into the huge studio. It had a water cooler with fancy reverse osmosis water (whatever that means) and there were so many yoga mats. We probably all could have had 2 to 3 if we really wanted. It was also pretty dark in the studio, partially because it now gets dark at practically 5:30 pm and partially because the room was mostly being lit by candles. Everyone got settled and ALL the lights went off. We were literally going to do this by candlelight.

Here's the highlights of how it went down:
- There was chanting
- You talked every single time you did a movement (I guess this helps to control your breathing?)
- It hurt a lot because there was a focus on muscle endurance (as in "let's not put our arms down for 5 minutes straight" or "let's repeat this a hundred million times without stopping")
- I had a lot of shaky positions
- There actually was a dance party
- There was singing
- It was maybe kind of "cult-y"
- I was sweating buckets . . . salty buckets
- I smiled a lot, it was pretty fun!

Here are the conclusions:
- This is NOT traditional yoga
- This is a legitimately challenging workout
- I need to wear shorts next time
- I should probably pop some sort of salt tablet next time
- With all the singing and dancing, it's kind of like Sparks
- There's a 95% chance that I will be unable to move when I wake up tomorrow
- I feel terribly sorry for anyone at the Shopper's Drug Mart that had to come within a 6-foot radius of me when I stopped on the way home to get a Gatorade (in other news, I think it's super cool that not only is the Shopper's Drug Mart open 24 hours, but the pharmacy counter is too!)
- You will need immediate access to a washing machine when you get home afterwards
- This is NOT traditional yoga

There is also a distinct possibly that I took my Gatorade into the shower because I couldn't decide what I needed more when I got home. If this did happen, it would have been quite convenient because the Gatorade had one of those nozzle things, so no water could get in.

For good measure, I'm putting in a picture of some cool leaves that I found walking home from work. Maybe my brother can identify them for me.