Yesterday, Teresa and I received the painful news that her mother, Maria Luisa Carrasco de Chavez Delgado, had passed away after a long, gradual decline in her health in Peru. Teresa had been down to Lima to see her mother three weeks ago. Tomorrow, Teresa will fly down to Lima again, but this time to join her three sisters in laying her mother to rest.
As the matriarch of a clan of sisters, Luisa (or Celeste to her intimates) welcomed me into her home 43 years ago when I first fell in love with her daughter. For more than 15 years, she lived right next door to us in Miraflores, She is intertwined with my memories of Peru. When we moved back to the States in 1996, she came up for Christmas almost every year to visit with us and her other daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Last Saturday, my wife and I set off for a late vacation in the Caribbean. We had hoped that we would be able to avoid hurricanes and foul weather. The first two days, the sun was out and we spent some great time on the beach.
On Monday, we woke up to strong winds, sheets of rain and a growing awareness of what we had gotten ourselves into.
Our resort was located right on the ocean, but on the leeward side of the island so the full force of the storm did not hit us. We were also sheltered by hills. The resort management switched over to their own power generator even before the storm hit.
Shortly after I took these shots, the wind shifted and came straight at us. Our balcony began to fill with water. Darkness came and we could not see how fiercely the winds were blowing, only hear their howling. That was the most intimidating moment. Continue reading Vacations with Hurricane Earl→
I’ve started going to yoga classes with my wife, Teresa, on weekends. For a long while, she was content with taking classes at Bally Fitness on Sundays, but that just did not get it done, and maybe pick up the odd class somewhere else. I bought her a 10-class pass at Thrive Yoga for Christmas, but she immediately came down with a bad cold and other health complications. She was just able to use up for pass, in March when she started going weekdays, when she does not have to worry about her Spanish teaching. On her own, last week, she bought an unlimited month pass.
Teresa has been dabbling in yoga almost as long as I have, since we both began taking classes at Bally Fitness, but she has never taken it as seriously or consistently as I have. Now she still needs to work a lot on her fundamentals and she refuses to take a basics course because she sees it as a watered-down version of a full vinyasa class. So every once in a while, I will shift an eye over to her mat to see how she’s doing. She also needs to work on muscle strength and flexibility, the deficiencies of most beginners.
Between my daughter, Stephanie, and me, we’ve more or less convinced Teresa of the dividends of a steady yoga practice, and she does not want to be left behind.
For the past two Ashtanga classes, I convinced my wife, Teresa, to join in the fun. She had done yoga before she met me, when she was in college in Peru, but she had not followed through on that initial interest. It’s been tough for her because she had just been doing cardiovascular workouts, with some swimming and walking, so she was not prepared for the full body workout. Yoga has left her stiff in places (I am stiff in places too).
Since I’ve been thinking about going on a yoga retreat or cruise, I am going to have to include her in the outing (you would think). She can’t just come along for the sightseeing. In any case, I think she has observed me over the past six months and how I’ve grown with the yoga, the meditation and the pranayama. She doesn’t complain when I disappear for an hour to do my routines. She encourages our children to think about practicing yoga to keep their minds and body pure.
In other words, I would not have been able to get this far without her tacit support.