So after over a week of rambling about nothing in particular that is pertinent to my life (when I'm not clinging to rocks in the quest for small and very adorable reptiles, life is pretty gosh darn boring here) I guess it's time for an update.
First, I'd like to thank all of you amazing and wonderful people who have responded with names for the cactus! I will leave it open for ideas until 8am on Monday (Central Africa Time) which is about an hour ahead of GMT at the moment I think? We don't have daylight savings so the rest of the world kind of confuses me! Once all of the options are in we will have a lab argument (I mean discussion) to select our favourites and I will put up a poll at some stage on Monday, so watch this space!
Anyway I decided that now that I've been going to the gym for over a year (and regularly for eight months) I was getting kind of bored with the routine of it. I still enjoyed it, but I was kind of hitting a plateau and getting really dejected and I was afraid of ending up all demotivated and slumped over on my hair (we really need a couch in the lab. We have nowhere to slump dejectedly right now). So partly out of desperation and partly in the spirit of sorting my life out and facing fears and so on, I decided to be brave and try a class. This took guts - I like to do things on my own, new people scare me, and last time I tried a class at the gym it was the yoga session run y the horrible psycho woman and I could barely move for days after she decided that we didn't need any training or experience to try the difficult stuff.
So on Wednesday morning I went to a Pilates class. As an aside the name makes me giggle because on a field trip a few months ago we were playing 30 Seconds with the students. That's the game where you have to describe things to your team who has to guess what they are, in under thirty seconds. Anyway one girl waited until after the end of her turn and then yelled "What the HECK is Pohn-tee-is Pih-lah-tees?" Seems she confused the biblical Roman with an exercise regime. Could happen to anyone.
Anyway I had a blast! The instructor looked like a walking-talking Ken doll and he was so incredibly camp that I was tempted to ask his if he wanted to join me next time I go shoe shopping! He was really nice and let me in even though I was late, even if "You've missed the warm-up dahling!" and proceeded to make me laugh so hard I barely managed to get through some of the routine. The best part was when we'd finished kicking "Like a merman! Kick like a merman!" he told us to check where we'd felt tension. When some of the women said that they had done it differently and suggested that they knew better, he threatened them with developing love handles. Almost without exception all the women around me (the lone confused-looking guy just kind of shuffled his feet) dropped and began doing the exercise again!
For the rest of the day i was worried that something was wrong with me - it seemed that I had done a repeat of my previous experience and stumbled into the advanced class - noting hurt! I hadn't even broken a sweat. Admittedly it was absolutely freezing as it has been all week, but still, I bounced around all day and even did a demonstration in the lab (we'd had the floor cleaned recently so it was safe lying on it). The next morning I woke up and couldn't move my arm to turn my alarm off. The blinding blinding pain! And everyone laughed at me when all I could do was type (slowly) or move a computer mouse (carefully) and opening doors or lifting anything heavier than my coffee cup made me gasp/sqwawk in pain!
And so last night I decided that maybe Tai Chi class would be a good way of loosening up my muscles, so I went and did that, and it was amazing! The instructor was really nice and super-patient and it was slow enough that I was able to really focus on getting things right and it felt so awesome! At the beginning we (myself and two other beginners) were practically falling over our own feet and by the end it was feeling... right. And I felt graceful - which I haven't in a really long time! admittedly we learned four steps in nearly an hour and a final step at the end, but it was so awesome!
I can't wait for Tuesday's class!