Sunday, July 28, 2013

And the Dosha verdict is in.....


I had always wanted to go to an Ayurvedic doctor in India and find out my constitution.
I just had to wait for the right doctor.
And I found him!

So today was my appointment and we hopped in a rickshaw and drove the distance to his clinic. He was pretty far away from our home here in Gokulam.

But we arrived as his previous client was leaving and entered his well kept room with all of his wonderful Ayurvedic potions well stocked amongst the orderly shelves.

I was so happy that Ray was with me (as I always am) because he asked me so many questions and Ray pretty much "kept me honest" with the right answers!!
It was actually quite comical and Dr. Rao got a kick out of us as well.

I don't have any "problems" per say..and the one thing I thought could be a problem, turned out to not be a problem at all! He told me it's Just Who You Are!
Because you see..I am a pretty wound up character generally. Even as a small child I was highly energetic and bouncy and bubbly...
I thought he might have a special Ayurvedic potion he could subscribe to me to make me..
well... r e l a x e d.
But quite the contrary actually. He thought I was just fine and dandy just the way I am!
So There!!

Now, had we of been in the US and I went to a regular medical doctor, I have a feeling he would have referred me to another sort of doctor (if you get my drift) and that other sort of doctor may have prescribed for me a nice bottle of meds to take me down about 5 notches (or so).
One of the Top reasons I do tend to steer more towards Natural Medicine if at all possible.

After my long and Very thorough question and answer session..in which All aspects of my person and personality were covered. He gave me the results..
and told me I am balanced in the Vata and Kapha Doshas, and my dosha is Pitta 

The Pitta dosha controls digestion, metabolism, and energy production. The primary function of Pitta is transformation.
Qualities of Pitta: Hot, light, intense, penetrating, pungent, sharp, acidic. Those with a predominance of the Pitta principle have a fiery nature that manifests in both body and mind.
Physical Characteristics: Pittas are usually of medium size and weight. They sometimes have bright red hair, but baldness or thinning hair is also common in a Pitta. They have excellent digestion, which sometimes leads them to believe they can eat anything. They have a warm body temperature They sleep soundly for short periods of time and have a strong sex drive. When in balance, Pittas have a lustrous complexion, perfect digestion, abundant energy, and a strong appetite. When out of balance, Pittas may suffer from skin rashes, burning sensations, peptic ulcers, excessive body heat, heartburn, and indigestion.
Emotional Characteristics: Pittas have a powerful intellect and a strong ability to concentrate. When they’re in balance, they are good decision makers, teachers, and speakers. They are precise, sharp-witted, direct, and often outspoken. Out-of-balance Pittas can be short-tempered and argumentative.
When Pittas are overstressed, their typical response is “What did you do wrong?”

I will admit here and now, that I was a bit apprehensive about going to see him, ONLY because I LOVE Chai SO much and was scared to death he would tell me that was One item I needed to eliminate in my diet..WRONG!!!

YIPEEEEEE!!! My god was I scared though....

He gave me a list of each food group and what I should avoid..and believe it or not, I pretty much eat that way already. Heck, he even said I could keep on eating the Mysore Pak (in moderation of course!) I'm telling you, this man is an Ayurvedic Saint Doctor!! LOVE Him!

He then prescribed 4 Ayurvedic potions for me to take. All are natural and most are plant based and one that he prescribed for me that I am to take in the afternoon tasted so good I wanted to drink the whole bottle in one gulp. But I resisted.

The potions he prescribed are basically for my hormonal changes as I am getting up there you know..
and one other which I won't reveal..(a girls gotta have Some secrets!)

I LOVE Natural Medicine. I always have. I always will. I am SO happy I went today and I will continue to use natural therapies as long as I can in my life. Because it's what I believe in.

(seen on our way to the Ayurvedic doctors home, a priest on his way to the temple, barefoot of course!)

Oh, one more thing. Today's cost for the one hour consultation, my constitution assessment as well as my four bottles of potions (that will last a month) $22.00.

What's Not to love about that I ask?? But only in India!


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Lunch at Sandhya's House!

I still can't believe it was my first time going there.
In all of my trips to India, and I had Never had lunch at Sandhyas house...?
I know, it makes No sense whatsoever.

But yesterday was The Day!!
A few of my new friends here visiting made all the arrangements and at 1:30 our driver picked us up and drove us through the streets and lanes to Sandhyas home.

We arrived right on time and it was such a warm and quaint abode.
Then I saw her...

and her smile was as Bright and Warm as the day was!
I couldn't keep my hands off of her, she is just So Huggable!!
What a great Spirit this woman has. So Wonderful.

We all sat down at a long table set especially for us. There were 7 of us.
Then the food started coming...
and it seemed like it would never end.
I would see an empty dish, only to look away and then look back and it had been replaced with a full one!
We all ate until we thought we would POP!

I asked Sandhya what time she began the cooking for us. She told me that the chopping takes about 2 hours and then they begin to cook. They started at 9:30 am...we arrived at 1:30 pm. She has two woman that help her cook. A mother and her daughter. There was one other daughter, but she is off at school now. (she is the one who modeled for the front of her cookbook)
The girls learned and began to help at the ages of 5 and 8 years old. So they are Quite the cooks now!!
above is the one daughter and below is her Mother. (they look like they could be sisters)

 The daughter above lives with Sandhya along with Sandhyas beloved cats!

and she has many~
They roam around as you eat and are quite well mannered at that!

Here are some pics of everyone enjoying her Delicious food which is cooked and prepared from her old family recipes and are Ayurvedically balanced. We had some great conversation and some really good laughs (as we always do!)

and shots of Sandhyas home...

then it was MY TIME...meaning...Chai Time!!!

I LOVE my Chai!!!

Sandhya has written a cookbook for those of you who didn't know...and it is available on Amazon!

and she also has accommodations for Yoga students during high season. Who Wouldn't want to stay at her house...and eat her delicious food????

see...we ate it ALL!!!

 we took some photos and said our Good-Byes...

But promised to return again soon..
and we will!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

My Puja Room here in Mysore

So, there is one thing about our new home that thrills me to the bone.
Honestly. To the very core.
And it's my Puja Room.

I have always loved Puja rooms. I've always been mystified by them and have always wanted to know more about them and of course to have my own.

Now I do!

Yesterday we made our way into Mysore City to get the final touches to make it complete.
Thankfully our two dear friends met us there and took us right where we needed to go.
Devaraj Market.
A place that frankly, I don't care to visit all that often, but having our "seasoned" friends take us there made me see it through new eyes~
I actually think I quite love it now in fact!

But back to my Puja room...

The other evening we had to go down and pay our landlords a brief visit and in doing so, their Puja room caught my eye..and when the wife noticed my excitement she immediately took my hand and led me to the doors of it!
She then proceeded to teach me how she performs her twice daily dedication to the gods/goddess's that adorn her most Beautiful Puja room!!

She must have had most all of them in there as well...and this is India remember. The land of the Gods~
and those who know me best, know that This Is one of the very reasons I love India so Very much! You can feel them even in the very air you breathe and I Love It!!!

I learned so much from her that day and she insisted on giving me some "dhoop" sticks.
Very special ones. Ones that are very "important to god" she told me.
They look like these
after she lit one from the flame of her oil lamp and told me to smell it..I believed her. (I believed her anyway before that though). When it comes to religious pujas here in India. It is a pretty serious business and I am always touched by those experiences.

I went to the little tiny "stall" that sells these and bought all of the boxes they had but two.
They cost 15 rupees each and come with 3 big bags on each, as well as a little foil cup in which to burn them. But the smell is actually quite incredible and now one of my favorite parts of my daily routine when I perform my morning and evening puja.

 There is the oil for my oil lamps, the camphor and cotton and all of my incense and of course the very important dhoop sticks,

  that is the dhoop  stick in the small foil cup burning. My room in now complete and such a special part of our home. I love waking up and opening the doors to place the fragrant garland inside and begin our day here in India!

Monday, July 15, 2013

A Party for Mahesh!

The phone call came a few days prior.
It was Meena inviting Ray and I to Mahesh's Surprise Birthday Party!!!

I arrived ahead of Ray as he had to make a trip into Mysore on the bus to pick something up.

I came down the street and saw Ashish, their oldest son just pulling up with his Grandparents (Mahesh's Parents) and then I figured I was late...
But Ashish said that in fact it was OK, that I was on time!
(I really, Really need to start understanding that the time I am used to and Indian time is much different and really quite relaxed. Always about 20 to 30 mins. later)

I came in the door and first saw Meena~ She looked Radiant and SO Happy!!!
We hugged and then I saw Mahesh. Talk about Radiant and Happy!!!! He was Glowing!

There were a few other guests in attendance. Yogis here for their practice and of course the parents and everyone was just really excited about being there. It was nice!

Kimo had brought Mahesh's cake for the party...
from "Cubs" and it was to die for!

we were all chatting and visiting, when all of a sudden Ashish walked into the room with his guitar. So I thought he was going to possibly play the Happy Birthday song to his father..
but then Meena came in and stood next to him and she said she was going to sing a song to Mahesh!

This song, as we all learned is a Very special song to them both.
The story goes like this...
On Mahesh and Meenas first date, Mahesh asked Meena to sing him a song and she chose this very same one. It is a song from a Bollywood movie. It touched us all..

After the wonderful performance by Meena, she told us all to come into the next room and there was dinner!
Yes, Dinner!
All home cooked of course and I was especially thrilled to see my favorite thing included...
Idli's! and of course Chutney.

Here are a few photos from the celebration...

This is Ashwin, Mahesh and Meenas youngest son~ pictured above.

 It was so cute, at one point in the evening, Meena came over and sat down on a chair and said "This is the First Birthday Party I have had for Mahesh"! She laughed...she said "Always for the boys, Ashish and Ashwin, but never Mahesh" It was just really cute how she laughed and surprised herself as well in throwing such a wonderful party for him!

and above is Aruna, Mahesh and Meena's sister in law and really such a lovely soul.
I almost felt as if I had known her all my life...it was quite strange really. I almost couldn't get over it.

My most Favorite part of the whole evening (well, other than Meenas song to Mahesh and the Idlis!!) was when they cut the cake and the parents fed a piece to Mahesh and Mahesh fed a piece to Meena! Indian Tradition at it's finest!

A Night to Remember for sure!!
Happy Birthday to you Mahesh! May you have many, Many more memorable birthdays to come my friend!