For the last 1 month; Neetu and me (Total Yogis on the Road!) have been exploring Europe – visiting Rome & Venice, Barca, Zurich, Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin and Vienna! It’s been a fun, trans-continental jaunt that we have throughly enjoyed! Here are some of the highlights – from the vantage point of being a modern yogi-gypsy if I may say!
ROME: I’ve written a longer blog on Rome itself; such was the magnifique-ness of the Eternal City. Many memories vie for attention but the one that remains most vividly is being a part of the Fontana de Trevi monument. Sad reminder that great works of art are rarely enjoyed in the public domain – generally they preen at us from beyond bullet-proof boundaries! Talking about museums – this was certainly the most Meditative part of the whole holiday – standing transfixed in the presence of a true Masterpiece! Somehow you became silent just witnessing a moment of the rarest brilliance.
VENICE: A dream on water. Sailing in a gondola in the Venetian canals is something I cannot ever forget. And I remember the old Mastercard ad – ‘Somethings in Life are Priceless!’ Aaah..
BARCA: Maximum City with an idyllic beach! How is that even possible? Once you’ve spent a day on the beach; suddenly you’re IN-TIME with the city. You just get the right pace – and then Barca tantalizes you! We dropped in for the Barcelona Yoga Conference; which was interesting and disappointing at the same time. Interesting because it conferences like these attract so many people; and disappointing because the entity of Yoga is often stretched beyond recognition! The last eve we were lucky to see the Carmen opera!
ZURICH: Perhaps the cleanest air an city could have! And the perfect blend of a city and countryside. Hiking and Trekking in Switzerland was a memory of a lifetime – such beauty everywhere you looked!
PARIS: What can one say about Paris that hasn’t been said before? Je ne sais pas! Yes, the most visited city in the world – there’s a reason why! A million reasons actually. The Eiffel being only one of those. For me it has to be the Louvre – just took my breath away. Meditative painting-gazing (that’s a new course we’re offering btw!). We did a Yoga-in-the-Park session at Jardin du Luxembourg which was picture-perfect in every sense. Tres beautiful really!
AMSTERDAM: The capital of cool – a Yogi’s kinda city; where everything is legal. That’s the way it should be – legalize things and they cease to be obsessions. Beautiful city; biker’s paradise really! And the coolest folks you’ll find.
BERLIN: Wow is a word too polite to describe the city. Too much going on; but strangely in a nice way! The pain of the War and the Wall get you. But then you also appreciate the resilience of the people and how they have come back once again to provide vital leadership for the continent. Museum island was brilliantly efficient as all things in the city are. We also went in to see Jivamukti Yoga school – seemingly cool place (but just seemingly).
VIENNA: What a way to end a European trip. As regal as we saw through out our holiday. Vienna is certainly refined beyond compare. Watching a performance of classics at the palace was a divine experience!
AND NOW: We’re back to India’s capital of cool – Bangalore! Loads of filter coffee after tiffin, friends, yoga classes and bad driving! Home.