9:30 am class with Amy.
So, in between sets of half moon pose, Amy says that she forgot to bring in a picture of a Japanese Hand Sandwich. One of the silliest parts of the dialogue comes in the first forward bend, where the instructor tells you to fold your body like a Japanese Ham Sandwich. I've asked around, both at class, to some friends, and on Yoga.com. It doesn't look like anyone has ever seen a Japanese Ham Sandwich.
Then I did a Google search. The phrase "japanese ham sandwich" mostly brings up Bikram yoga related pages. But it doesn't bring up anything that has either a picture or a description. I didn't even know the Japanese ate ham, and thought that the sandwich was so thin and compressed because there wasn't any ham in it. Now I'm waiting to see if Amy ever actually brings in this picture she claims exists.
Today was a lesson in taking a step back after having made so much progress. Things didn't go badly, but I couldn't hold my balance in Standing Head to Knee (like yesterday), and I just didn't have the strength for the second set of half locust. I'm thinking that part of it could be the four hours sleep I got last night. But my energy level seems fine, even with so little sleep.
It could be the effect of four consecutive days. But I have to put that thought out of my mind. Because that leads to extrapolating to how beat up I might feel after 40 days, etc...
I also am wondering more about group dynamics in the class. Nobody talks, of course. And for the most part, when I'm looking in the mirror I am barely aware of the people around me. And after the balancing series, the mirror is irrelevant and I basically don't see anyone, except maybe in between poses. Even so, the mood of the room seems to have a real impact on how well things go. If others are suffering, it becomes contagious. The room actually feels hotter when other people are struggling. When the folks are strong and composed, its uplifting and the room cools down. I know the room doesn't actually either heat up or cool down. But I'm also sure that, with the same absolute conditions, almost everyone would say that the room was hotter than usual when people are frustrated and suffering (and vice versa).
One answer to this, I suppose, is that I should try to focus on myself, and put away the group dynamic. First off, this is much easier said than done, I think. Secondly, if I did that as a general rule, then I would miss the really great times when the class seems strong and together. And this is one situation where I think the good probably outweighs the bad. Now, if you could tap into the mood when its positive, but somehow ignore it when its negative.... But I have no idea how I would do that.