Books and books… (Oh and a headstand)

Exploring near Cologne
Exploring near Cologne

Life in Cologne is many things, but one thing I didn’t expect was for it to be difficult. Of course language school is no breeze in the park, but adapting to new cities and cultures is usually a particular strong point of mine. Keyword there: usually. Take away all that mumbo-jumbo about adaption and cultural shock, life is simply life, without the added help of friends and family being nearby. I’m still my usual occasionally anti-social self, the only difference being that I no longer have the particular comfort of consistency.

These past 1 and 1/2 weeks have been great, regardless, for other reasons. I finally found my yoga studio and splurged for my one month membership: Vishnus Couch. What a name. It’s no Sweat and Soul (but really who could match such a studio), but the community is one that I really felt connected to. I’ve yet to take their Pranayama course on Saturdays, but I look forward to doing it next week! Nope. Instead I’ve tried legitimately everything else on their docket: Level 2 Yoga, Level 3 Yoga, Jiva Mukti Yoga, Core Integration… everything. And everything seems to work out really well.

From the Vishnus Couch Website
From the Vishnus Couch Website

What’s so great about yoga is that you don’t need words to communicate with other people. I don’t need to talk about how I can only do side-crow on one side of my body, I can just try it with a class and feel connected to a group of people I’ve never met before, because we’re all struggling. There are, obviously, some yoga styles that I immediately disliked… like Jiva Mukti. But that’s more a function of their weird poses than anything else. Speaking of yoga… Finally accomplished a headstand on Sunday! It may not seem like an overly crazy thing to talk about, but now that I’ve done just that one (and no others, mind you), I’m so motivated to try other poses that I wouldn’t have tried otherwise. Just a steadily improving insight on our own confidence and abilities.. or something spiritual like that.

Turkey breast, tomatos and spinach
Turkey breast, tomatos and spinach

Other than yoga? I massively failed trying to cook some turkey breast when I realized that sunflower seed oil is not as nonstick as canola or olive oil. But nevertheless, the meal was pretty solid, if I do say so myself (and I do). Other than that, I live on quark, peppers, protein bars and eggs, which in all honesty- isn’t that different than how I eat in the US. I am obviously ignoring the crazy enormous amounts of bread and pastries I eat on a daily basis, but when they taste so good – how can you say no?

And remember how I wrote a couple weeks ago about how I couldn’t get back into the whole “book” vibe? Well, that has drastically made a turn around. I cannot stop reading! Ever since I forced myself to read that one Netgalley book instead of watching reruns of How I Met Your Mother, it’s like a small part of me was sparked back to life. I’ve never been happier inside. I do miss my friends and my family and sometimes I feel the weight of their absence like a chokehold. But, I don’t think there’s ever been a more important time in my life to dig down deep internally and see what I’m made of.

Books I’ve Read Recently: (And for which, reviews will be coming this week!) (Mostly) 

The Morgenstern Project by David Khara 

Coercion by Tim Tigner

Trust No One by Paul Cleave 

The Collector by Anne-Laure Thieblemont

Playing with Fire by Tess Gerritsen 

Mudras for Modern Life by Swami Saradanda 

Once Upon a Yugoslavia by Surya Green 

Witches Protection Program by Michael Cash

Lithium 6 by Risto Isomaki

Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson

Thunderstruck by Erik Larson

The Annihilation Score by Charles Stross

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