Each morning when I prepare my cup of matcha tea, I think of Thich Nhat Hanh. He has many quotes about making tea. I searched, but couldn’t find the specific one I had in mind; it’s an invitation to embrace mindfulness in the simple task of tea preparation. He might be referring to the full tea ceremony, but I take a more casual yet reverent approach when I whisk the matcha and pour the hot water into my favorite mug. I am fully present for the tea. And I savor each sip. It’s a ritual that brings me a sense of peace. We’re in month 8 now of the coronavirus pandemic and if I’ve gotten anything out of it, it’s the profound gratitude I feel for the little pleasures of life, like tea in the morning, like spending time with friends, like hugging. . . . .and dancing. Yes, I do have a strong preference for dancing with you in person so that I can look into your eyes, feel the touch of your hand on mine, wrap you in a warm, lingering hug, but that’s not to be right now and so I revel in the gratitude of the zoom dance. Two weeks ago I was in a breakout room after dance with someone who hasn’t attended the zoom dance in months. I didn’t realize how much I’d missed her, missed her sweet, gentle presence, until she started talking, describing how much she treasures the dance. I completely resonated with everything she expressed. I had tears running down my cheeks by the time I closed my laptop. The dance opens me up, softens my heart, gentles my being, and connects me to beautiful people near and far. Tea is my ritual. And so is dance. These activities seem so simple, but these days, I truly cherish the small wonders of life. I am grateful for tea, for dance, for blue sky & clean air, for a body that moves, for the healthy food on my plate, for the hand I get to hold, for family & friends.
I’m happy to tell you that tomorrow our beloved Lori Saltzman will be at the helm; holding space and providing the soundscape. I hope to see you there.
Helpful link: https://www.openfloordance.org/community-dances
And don’t forget about the Holiday Party (on zoom): Tuesday, December 8th at 7pm.
A little poetry is good for the soul.. . . . .
for Thich Nhat Hanh
How many years of suffering revealed in hands like his small and deliberate as a child's
The way he raises them from his lap, grasps the teacup with sure, unhurried ease
Yet full of anticipation for what he will taste in each sip he drinks as if it's his first time
Lifts the cup to his mouth, a man who's been practicing all his life, each time tasting something new.
~ Amy Uyematsu ~
May we taste something new in the little things we do each day.
Happy Thanksgiving, Sweet Friends. Be healthy. Be safe. Take care of each other.
Sending love & hugs,