Yet another first today – laughing yoga. I read about it in Fiona Caulfield’s fab Love Mumbai guide book and rang yoga club organiser Mr Hirani yesterday to make sure it was on. It took quite a while for me to understand that it is indeed on not just yesterday and today but 365 days a year at Jogger’s Park which is not too far away from our hotel.
So I was up with the crows (doesn’t sound as cute as sparrows, does it?) and hailed a taxi to take me there. My taxi driver knew exactly where to go and offered to stay and have his tea while I did the yoga.
What Mr Hirani might have been trying to tell me on the phone was that I sounded too young because it turns out the yoga at Jogger’s Park is for Senior Citizens.
What Mr Hirani doesn’t know is that while in physical years I’m not quite there yet, in flexibility I am, so being in a senior citizens yoga class felt just about right.
The men were standing on one side of the little park - which is ringed by tall hedges and has three palm trees in the middle – and the women on the other, with Mr Hirani in the middle.
I stood at the back, owing to being a foot taller than everyone else, and just copied the person in front. The person behind was quick to correct me when I got it wrong which was extremely helpful and in fact, this is really my kind of yoga. It’s not about holding poses or maintaining strength, it’s about “moving every part of your body” as one lady told me.
She also told me that in fact the yoga is only on 364 days a year because the senior citizens like to go out late on New Year’s Eve so there’s no yoga on New Year’s Day.
At the end of the class, the lady who had so kindly corrected me took me up to Mr Hirani who introduced me to the class and prayed that I would bring lots of sweet sweet love from India back to New Zealand, which I will endeavour to do. Then I got to high five all the senior citizens.
After that, the class sang happy birthday including a whole verse to the same tune that went: “We are glad God made you, We are glad God made you, We are so glad God made you, Happy Birthday to you!”
Isn’t that adorable?
My only disappointment was that there was no actual laughing. Maybe tomorrow. And in the meantime I’m left basking in the thrill of being the youngest person at something.