Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Meditation 101

The Tucson Festival of Books has much more than books. 
Early in the morning, it looked like this.
But by mid-day this was more usual. 
Everything is so well thought out at the Festival.
The recycling is next to the garbage and both are recyclable containers. 
There was no trash on the ground.
This vertical garden was an interesting idea,
but the droopy leaf up there at the top made me question its efficacy in the desert. 
 When questioned, the grower couldn't disagree. 
I moved on to the books.
passing Authors Helping Authors

and this friendly fellow who happily smiled for a picture in The Burrow.
I gave him my card; I wonder if he'll comment and let us know that he's out there?
Of course, there were authors, too,
Robert Dugoni, John Lescroart, Mike Lawson

and I was able to sit up close to some old favorites and some new discoveries. 
Mike Lawson and I shared a brick ledge on Saturday afternoon, watching the last 3 seconds of the Arizona Pac-12 championship game unfold on my smartphone.  That's the best part of the Festival; the authors are as happy to chat with the patrons as the patrons are delighted to chat with them.

But none of this tells you about the title of this post.

UMC, which saved my life, is now called University of Arizona Medical Center.
They had a giant tent with interactive exhibits and free packages of Hallmark thank you notes.
 I had no idea why they were offered to me, but I took them just the same.
There was an obstacle course to prove that you can't walk - let alone drive - and text at the same time, and there were CPR dummies - but no infants - for a crash course in saving a life, and there was a social worker behind a table.

She had all sorts of leaflets, but there, in the center of the tablecloth, was one advertising a free meditation program at UAMC.  The social worker introduced herself as one of the leaders, and she seemed genuinely delighted to hear of my interest.  The Integrative Medicine doctor told me to add meditation to my life, assuring me that, in addition to the dozens of supplements on my list, it would change my life for the better.

I heard him but I didn't act.

Standing there, I made the commitment and today I attended my first class.... session... experience.... there weren't very many instructions.

She told us to sit comfortably,
to put our hands in a yoga mudra,
and then she started talking about rainbows and this being the luckiest day of your life
and then we were quiet for 15 minutes. 
She rang a gentle bell chime, and we shared our practice.
I walked out with a woman from Long Island, I found my car, and I drove home.
I drove very carefully.
I paid attention to everything around me.
I was calm in a deep inside me space.
At the time, I wasn't that impressed.
As the afternoon wears on, and the feeling continues and grows, I'm thinking there might just be something to this after all.
It's certainly better than swallowing all those capsules of stuff-that-is-good-for-me.
I wonder, when they planned the Tucson Festival of Books, if they knew it would be a life changing event?


  1. I love meditation. It's hard to do though when you have three kids, a job and two volunteer jobs. I do need to do it more 'cause with all that's going on, it would probably alleviate a lot of my stress. I wish we had book festivals here in DC. I've never seen one, but if they had one, I would be there in a heartbeat.

    Love the pictures too.

    Happy Tuesday.

    Megan xxx


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