I can barely find my way to the kitchen, so when I stumbled across the possibility of finding myself, I was intrigued – though not entirely optimistic about the outcome. I had done the odd yoga class before but this promised to be something more – meditation, spiritual enlightenment and so forth. My Ommm moment here in the Tramuntana mountains, overlooking a gently lapping, swooning sea and a setting sun. If I could not find my inner self here, all hope was lost.
A group of some 10 additional delegates share the experience, though they all appear to be far more in tune with themselves, osmosis and the universe than I. And while I have arrived in my lycra gym gear, their harem trousers and earth-coloured tank-tops make me look as if Minnie Mouse has wrongfully appeared in Gone with the Wind.
“Clear your mind of zee endless chatter,” our German primate instructor – or guide as he calls himself – chants to us in a melodic manner. He is a perfect blend of Michael Bolton and Mikhail Baryshnikov with only a hint of Herr Flick. We are all sitting serenely in a circle, hands poised, palm up, on our knees, eyes supposedly closed, but I find myself peeking. Why is no one else looking uncomfortable? My knees creaked on the way down and may give up altogether on the way up again.
“Breathe in…..zen out…..” Michael continues. Finally something I can do well. I have spent rather a few decades doing it after all. Not sure why I haven’t done anything like this retreat lark before? But then, even five minutes of circle-sitting in the rain and chill of the UK and I would lead a rebellion to the pub.
We are now embarking on the deep meditation in lying position, imagining a ball of light traveling through our bodies collecting all aches, pains and worries on its way. “Feel zee light in your belly!” Michael hums, but I can mainly feel it rumbling. Hmm – what did I need to buy from the supermarket on the way back? Definitely some of those fresh ensaimadas…definitely not wine, my body being such a temple and all. Or perhaps a converted ruin – spruced up – would be a better description. So, some vegetables and fruit would be good, too.
“Let zee light leave through your third eye Chakra. Expel it all…. Breathe out the old… breathe in the new…”
I am quite warming to this. Can really visualize that beacon of light above my head. It’s making me feel quite snoozy…
“Hallo?” I hear the melodic voice very close.
” ‘Allo, ‘Allo,” I mumble back, opening my eyes…
Michael is peering at me, only a tad concerned. “You achieved deep relaxation, no?”
“Ahem, yes sorry… ” I mumble back, as I notice that I am the only one left in horizontal position. I really hope I didn’t snore. It would not have been very Zen like – Buddha would not have approved.
So on this short journey of self-discovery, I didn’t exactly find myself, but then I hadn’t necessarily lost myself beforehand. Who’s to say that I was not always destined to be a somewhat neurotic busy-body in the first place?
And I always have that lovely ball of light to keep me warm on a dark night.