Saturday, 7 September 2019
Why do it in public?
There, in the green just by the road, there was this man dressed in a martial arts type costume, doing all sorts of funny movements as if he was dancing in very slow motion, or touching invisible things in the air.
I nearly, crashed the car. I stopped and looked at him for a few minutes. He continued undisturbed.
I was told it is Tai Chi. A martial art practiced for both its defence training, its health benefits and meditation.
Good ... I have nothing against that.
But why practice it in full view of everyone in a park? Does this man not have a garden of his own? Or a room in his house, or apartment, where he can Tai Chi to his heart's content?
Why do it in public?
Is he trying to impress passers-by? Or has he lost his way home and trying to visualise a map out of thin air?
I would understand if it was a group of people practicing together in a park, or trying to recruit newcomers to their cause. But there he was; all alone. Exercising in his lonesome. Perhaps his friends don't like him and they directed him to the wrong park. They are all in town practicing together and off to the pub afterwards.
Anyway ... this reminded me of another similar incident that happened to me in Bournemouth, (South of England), a year or so ago.
I was staying in a small hotel, (about ten rooms), not far from the seaside. My room was on the ground floor opposite a beautiful garden facing the road.
I got up early in the morning and having got dressed, I drew back the curtains and opened the window to air the room a bit whilst I went for breakfast.
A couple of minutes or so later, after I drew back the curtains, there was this young woman outside my window wearing a very skimpy and very tight almost see-through leotard.
She placed a mat on the grass and then proceeded to do her exercises.
I stood there transfixed watching her. She was oblivious of me watching her, or she might have seen me and did not care anyway. The distance between me and her was no more than ten feet.
I don't know whether it was Tai Chi, or Yoga, or any other kind of yogurt!
I did try Yoga once before and had resolved not to do it ever again. The intention was that by getting into all the different positions one would learn to relax and become more supple in body and mind. Rather than become more supple I discovered that my legs and arms became entangled and I was more disjointed than ever before. The only thing I had learnt from that yoga session was how to hold on to a fart for a long period of time.
Anyway ... there I stood watching this woman outside my window not knowing whether to go for breakfast or stay there watching. In life, we often have to make difficult decisions on the spot of the moment.
After fifteen minutes or so, probably longer, she picked up her mat and left.
At breakfast I did mention to the owner of the small hotel, as he was serving us, that I had someone outside my window in full view of everyone in the street.
Yes, he said, she'd been a guest for a couple of days or so, and every morning she does her exercises outside the front room window.
I decided to stay in Bournemouth a few days longer.