I've been home four days now, and it feels familiar but...different, like an old suit that doesn't fit quite right anymore. A lot has happened while I wasn't here, just as a lot happened to me while I was away.
So I'm back home--in tropical Manila. My books and various leftover unpacked stuff are still on the couch and other various spaces in my room. Still jetlagged, still tired, in my jammies 'til noon, that sort of thing. But even as I'm here, I wistfully recall the heat (from 105-145 ºF++ or 41-63ºC++), the sweat (all 300++ people's) and yes, even the stinky cat-piss carpet; the ubiquitous ABC stores, the delicious Hawaiian papayas, eating grapefruit like an orange--for the first time(!), Starbucks' soy chai lattés, loads of Japanese products to my heart's content--especially yomogi/kusa (mugwort) mochi/daifuku (with recipes when I get ambitious or desperate enough), and fresh bubble teas--none of those icky powdered stuff! I miss Bikram's humor and unpredictability, being able to walk almost everywhere, and the friends I made along the way.
Taught my first class yesterday, but only with my studio director, as the other teacher had backed out. But he (my studio director) said that's ok. Had a lot of spaces in between my dialog: a 1 hour 50 minute class!, but again he said that's pretty normal (?); however, he said for me to continue studying the dialog. Now I know what teachers meant when they said that the dialog is my best friend; it really should be--it's the only stable thing to rely on! I will continue to do mock classes next week, and hopefully by the week after next, I will be teaching bigger classes. Huh; then I took class with him afterward: right now, my back and thighs hurt like hell, haha.
Made a new account on FaceBook to connect to my fellow yogis, so I'm considering deleting my Friendster and/or MySpace, 'coz I believe that one can only properly manage so many accounts. Been playing with my dogs--God, how I missed that! and noticed that I'm not as physically stern with them, but even with less effort, they already follow my command. I also noticed I'm more assertive outside (whut). This is so weird. Perhaps Bikram really is right: we go home completely different people. Maybe not completely, but pretty much! Then on FaceBook, today's Horoscope read as such: "You've made quite a bit of progress toward an important goal, but you're really tempted to slip back into old patterns. Don't start backsliding now." Mustn't backslide. Must will to continue developing, continue practicing, continue teaching. As they say, the real training starts after training. Someone said, "It's called yoga practice, not yoga perfect." Indeed, the dialog is my real companion now.