Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Dogs, Dogs, Dogs......

Hello again,

In many parts of the world there is an abundance of dogs. In Sri Lanka for example there is one dog for every 8 people. A sustainable ratio is 20:1 and we are way beyond that number. It's an interesting relationship that people have here with dogs.....it's mostly just co-existance. Many people don't seem to have much of an emotional connection to dogs and you see the whole spectrum. Occasionally there are healthy dogs with a collar and then you see starving, mange infested dogs sleeping on the street in the middle of a busy intersection.
The other major problem is that almost no one fixes dogs here. Of course the cost is a barrier for most people. This leads to dogs and puppies everywhere, including here at Rocky Point. When dogs go into heat they make a ton of noise and the whole neighborhood is kept up.
So, the other day we found a solution. We finally found a vet on the island who has a team of people who travel around and fix dogs. They have done 300,000 so far and want to do 1,000,000. We hired them to come here and help our neighborhood. We had no idea how many dogs would show up, but when the word got out, people kept bringing them. In the end we did 28 operations.
It was really great to see a positive solution and they will come back anytime. If we get at least 20 dogs it only costs about $10 a dog to get them fixed, have a rabies shot, and mange shot.
Lets hope that this puts dent in the dog population around here. Have a great day and as Bob Barker always said on THE PRICE IS RIGHT, "remember, also neuter your pets."

Monday, January 11, 2010

Mystery Chanting

Vishnu's Couch.......

Lotus Throne.....

The Thinker......
Hangle Dangle......
Floating Paschi.....

Hi Folks,

The other night I was awoken at around 3 AM to the sound of chanting. There was an obvious leader doing a call and response Buddhist chant. There must have been at least half a dozen people chanting because the sound carried through the jungle easily and it was extremely clear. They continued until dawn without pause. It was really beautiful to lie in bed and listen to the voices carrying through the jungle night.

Now I am not exactly sure what it was for, but I was told by the Sri Lankan folks who work here that families will often hire monks for various reasons.....if a family member is sick, someone dies, a serious crossroads is reached, etc. Now that is something that I don't think happens in America. Maybe the next time I need some help with something I'll hire some monks to come sit in my backyard and chant all night. I don't think my neighbors in Portland, OR would mind.

Other than the occasional evening monk chanting, our routine here at Rocky Point is pretty steady. The weather has dried out and we've had some beautiful sunny days the past week. It was really hot, humid, and less breezy the first few weeks I was here. I can't believe a month has already passed!

I have also been teaching lots of Partner Flying Yoga classes and doing an occasional Thai Massage. The photos are of me and Gaby flying on the beach next door. Sending lots of warmth and metta from the southern tip of Sri Lanka.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

A few happy folks at Rocky Point.....

An ancient bodhi tree.......

Fishing boats of Tangalle...

Flag on the Galle Fort Walls.....

Hi Friends,

I wish you all a happy and healthy 2010. Here we had a nice evening with an AcroYoga performance and some belly dancing. I have a 10 minute video but it will take hours to load so I'll do it later. We also had a little dance party afterwards......and everything was over by 10:30. Then a group of us went down to the sea for a dip in the water. Blessings, Jacob

Thursday, December 24, 2009

AcroYoga at the White House.....Sri Lanka

Hi Friends,

I wish you all a happy holiday season. AshtangaLanka is full and we will have 25 people at dinner tonight. It's really wonderful to see how many people are coming from all over the world. We have South African, British, Australian, American, German, Swedish, Canadian, Swiss, etc. It's a very international feeling.
As many of you know a big part of my life is AcroYoga. The past two years I have been in Sri Lanka I have not had anyone that is at a comprabale level to practice with. This season, however, two amazing flyers have manifested and are here to play with. Lucie, from Berlin, actually is living 2 hours away and teaching yoga at a place called The White House. It's a beautiful Sri Lankan colonial house. Gaby, a guest here at Rocky Point, is from Sweden. Earlier this week Gaby and I went to visit Lucie to play.
We shot some great videos and photos and will post a video when I get a fast connection. Blessings to all of you. Jacob

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Breeze is Back

Hi Friends,

I have returned to Sri Lanka for another season at Rocky Point. I arrived about a week ago to a tropical heat wave. For the first 6 or 7 days I felt like a wet towel the whole time. My body's thermostat was confused......when I left Portland, OR it was chilly and brisk. It truly is amazing how we fast one can relocate on this planet. Today the wind arrived to everyone's delight. It's amazing how much sweat one can generate by just sitting around in the tropics. With a sea breeze people's energy returned and now it's all ahead into the season. Starting tomorrow we are full pretty much though the beginning of March.

On my way here I visited my friends in Singapore again. It's such a nice pit stop along the journey to Sri Lanka. I arrived late at night and had a 22 hour layover to just lounge about at there place. They are ex-pats I know from Mount Shasta who live and work in Singapore. It was also exciting because they purchased a water filter from me and represented my first "international" sale. I hand delivered a Multi-Pure Drinking Water system to them.
After napping, showering, and having a delicious meal I headed back to the airport for my final leg to Colombo, Sri Lanka. Arriving at 12:30 AM I waited in the terminal for my friend Shakti to arrive from India. She has also been at Rocky Point the past two seasons. She lives in Dharmsala and teaches English to Tibetan Nuns living in exile.

So, Shakti came in at about 3:00AM and then we proceed outside to a car that was waiting for us, sent by Rocky Point. Since Shakti needed a 3 month VISA for Sri Lanka we went in the taxi to the driver's brother's house and just slept in the car for a few hours. Then in the morning we went to the VISA office.

Now, navigating these bureaucratic systems is quite different in a place India or Sri Lanka. To the novice traveler it can be quiet chaotic. Sri Lanka is definitely more organized and systematic than India but still appears like chaos. I particularly love how you go to at least three different desks with different people to get different signatures throughout the process. The room is on the third floor and hot. It's good to get there in the morning and early so you're not caught in the wave of people that arrive throughout the day. I've done it the previous two years but now I have a 5 year VISA so I don't need to do it again.

With the sweaty VISA office behind us and a green light to be in the county for both me and Shakti, we headed south along the coast for Rocky Point. After about a 5 hour drive through the busy coast highway we landed. Tired and sweaty we had a coconut and headed directly to the ocean to cool off.

I wish you all a wonderful holiday season and I'll write more soon. Cheers, Jacob

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Thai Flying Circus

Flying in the mountains of Spain....
A peaceful stone carving in the garden......
A view across the orchards....
Hi Friends,
Before coming to Amman I attended the first ever Thai Flying Circus. It was an amazing 12 day workshop which brought together AcroYoga and the Thai Massage Circus. We spent our mornings focusing on Thai massage techniques and in the afternoon we applied these skills in Flying therapeutic massage. The results were wonderful and people loved it. I met incredible folks from all over the world and it helped me deepen my practices significantly. If any of you are ever interested I would highly reccommend studying with Jason, Jenny, or Arno. They are magical people. I took very few pictures at the retreat but as I get more from other people I will add them to my blog.
Have a wonderful day. By the way I have just returned to Amman after another very successful weekend workshop. I also had the opportunity to visit Petra this week and I'll post lots of pictures soon.....AMAZING.........

Monday, July 6, 2009

Amman, Jordan

Hi Friends,
Greetings from Jordan. Here are a few pictures of this desert jewel. A view of a desert hot spring oasis... A nice place to do my morning practice.

One of the hot spring pools for soaking.
Mo sitting in a hot spring waterfall meditating.
Some of the folks at the weekend retreat.
Which way is home?
The road into the Wadi (canyon)....
The Dead Sea......
Salt formations in the Dead Sea.....
Covered in mud at the Dead Sea. We just pulled off the road and walked down to the sea for a soak and mud bath on our way home.

Greetings from Amman, Jordan. I just completed my first weekend workshop here and it went over really well. I had 12 people attend and hopefully next weekend we'll double our numbers. Jordan is a spectacular land. The workshop was at a retreat center located in a wadi (canyon) leading down to the Dead Sea. The retreat center is situated 300 meters below sea level. The landscape is dry, dusty, hot, mountainous, and rugged.....but deep in the canyon is a little oasis.....with cascading hot spring waterfalls. The entire river in the canyon is hot too, about 120 degrees.
I am being hosted here by my friend Santi Vege. Santi was a guest at AshtangaLanka (http://www.ashtangalanka.com/) this past winter in Sri Lanka. She enjoyed what I was teaching and invited me to come spend a few weeks in Jordan sharing with her yoga community. I am very thankful to Santi's yoga teacher, Alex Yashina, who helped organize these weekend workshops and gather people.
I hope that you are all having a great summer. Blessings, Jacob