Today was the first time I got to visit a Bikram studio in another city from my own -- most of my travels in recent years have been either to places without Bikram schools (like where Elderly Parent lives) or for conferences where it feels too hectic to figure out how to fit a class into the day.
Toronto has many Bikram studios, a surprising number really, for a city of this size. Most of them seem kind of small, and have somewhat limited schedules (which makes me realize how fortunate I am at my home studio, which offers 7 classes a day). I picked one to try today and wound up really liking it -- there's another one I might try that is a little closer to my friend's house, but with a less convenient class schedule. But the one I visited today was absolutely beautiful, with a wooden floor (I'm used to carpet) which felt so soothingly toasty warm during the floor series. The teacher was great, the atmosphere was pleasant, and the changing room spacious and well-equipped. And since it was Bikram yoga, I knew what I was doing. My beforehand jitters (my usual social anxiety with any new place/activity) dissipated super-quickly since it was essentially familiar and welcoming.
And after traveling and the crazy unpredictable schedules of vacation time, I really needed to get my spine and nervous system back in sync. I've come to rely on Bikram class for the mental focus and clarity even more than the physical realignment and relaxation. A couple of days out of the yoga room -- even for fun and good reasons as this week -- makes me start to feel kind of scattered.
So now I'm put back together again -- and looking forward to returning tomorrow! So far it's been a really relaxing visit -- not much writing has happened yet, but we've been having fun cooking, walking, talking, etc. Who knew you could fill up whole days just hanging out?