Tuesday, 15 February 2011
So I took myself to the hydrotherapy area instead. Sat solo (halleluyah) in the steam room and breathed. Shallow, gasping breaths. Not good. Couldn’t figure out the whirlpool so got into the swimming pool. All alone. And it was beautiful.
The sun glanced through the windows and I swam a couple of lengths slowly, mindfully, thoughtfully. And then I dunno, I just flipped onto my back and floated.
And breathed. And breathed. And just was. Listening to the water in my ears and fighting the thought that the seals were broken and I was filling up slowly and steadily with water until my whole body would be suffused and I’d sink and become one with the water. Then realising, that (doh) I’m nearly all water already anyway. And letting go.
Bliss. Nothing. Everything.
Every so often I’d feel a gentle tug as the water moved my body; adjusted me. Shifting me in slow circles.
Please God – I sent a silent prayer – don’t let the lifeguard (who must surely be watching on CCTV or something) think I’m drowned and race in and haul me out in some heroic gesture. And my prayer was answered.
How long was I there? I have absolutely no idea.
And when I finally emerged, I stumbled upon the salt steam room – again empty, just for me. And sat and meditated there too, breathing in the salt from the wall of Himalayan salt. And, as I came out, I thought about how tough we are on ourselves; how much we struggle. Okay, I’m including you guys here, but I have no right as maybe you don’t. But I do.
Anyhow, I thought about The Mistress of Spices, which I’ve just re-read. The first time I read it, I thought it was about magic mainly. The second time I read it I thought it was about love mainly. This time, I think it’s mainly about kindness. About being human. About trying to get through life the best you can, about being a bit of everything all rolled into one. And about not believing in surface appearances, about looking beyond the obvious. About looking for the deep truths that lie beneath.
And then I coughed. Again.