Sunny greetings from Jesolo

30. April 2017

Why you would get up in the middle of the night for yoga, peeling yourself out of the most comfortable hotel bed in the world to drag your sleep-deprived, early morning irritable self to the beach: About the sunrise on the (still) deserted beach and about happiness in Jesolo.

Shall I be frank with you? At first I did ask myself what I needed a Nespresso machine for in my room: Coffee capsules in Italy? That’s like taking a litre of Danube River water to the sea. Where, if not in Italy, would you get the best espresso ever? That’s the way it’s always been and would certainly be this time again: When I sat down in the sun in front of the hotel – right after arriving at the Falkensteiner Hotel & Spa Jesolo, and even before checking in to my room – with the first real espresso of my trip to Italy set before me, I could feel it: I’ve come to the right place. Sun. Beach. Sand. Sea. And ristretto perfection. This is the taste, the scent, and the feeling of Italy. And then that espresso capsule machine, the kind I very much appreciate at home in Vienna, here in my room? Nice. But: What for?

But I understood why the very next morning. Or rather: In the middle of the night. Because there are things that have to be. And if I rise before the sun so much as tickles the horizon, it is imperative that I have coffee –and if possible, before I meet other people. That even includes people who make me the best espresso in the world. But: The machine, the capsule, and I? I can handle that.

Now perhaps this sounds highly "un-yoga-like“ to you. Because yogis are always balanced, relaxed, always smiling happily and completely present in the Here & Now. A cross, sleepy, ill-humoured yogini? Is that even possible?

Why of course it is. Very much so! And precisely because I am a yoga teacher with heart and soul, I won’t mince words: The early - and by this I mean the really early - morning and I - don't always get along with each other. But we‘re working on it. Because I know that I benefit from greeting the sun. Every time. And particularly so by the sea. In Italy. Here in Jesolo.

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And there's another thing I know: Yoga also means to rise to challenges. Not as a competition, but to find oneself. This has a lot to do with the "asanas", the poses, that we aspire to do, achieve, and hold as we practice, but that is not all. The place and the time, the sounds, the light, and the scents - everything that surrounds us is and becomes a part of what we feel, experience, and are. And even non-yogis will agree with me: It is truly difficult to find anything more beautiful, inspiring and uplifting than the moment the sun climbs over the horizon. Whether in the mountains or at the sea.

Knowing all of this is one thing. But then actually peeling (if not outright dragging) yourself out of the blissful comfort of the warm, soft, giant bed of your dreams in the room of your dreams in the hotel of your dreams with the view of your dreams over the ocean that, while still dark, is already tinged at the horizon with the rose colours of imminent sunrise, is an entirely different story: That dream may quickly turn into a nightmare. It is warm in bed. And crisp outside. The body says "sleep", the heart calls "get up". To bestir yourself, motivate yourself, to be able to explain to yourself that you are doing yourself good, in a way that will not only encourage you all day long, but even far, far beyond that, in a way that I only have to think about to make me smile happily – that is yoga, too. For me.

Yoga has been with me for a long time. In all life situations. Becoming a yoga teacher was and is my dream. But sun salutations on the pier and standing all alone on the beach of Jesolo, in a place where the deck chairs crowd close together in the summers, hearing the sea murmur, feeling the still cool air – not cold anymore – flowing into my lungs, that was unique to me as well. A feeling that you can’t buy for money – and yet one that everyone is free to experience despite this, or precisely for this reason.

At first I just stood there. And breathed. Then I began my practice. And suddenly everything was not only beautiful and wonderful, but it also made sense: THAT IS YOGA. I felt the elements. The breath. The body. But everything around me as well. I felt who I was. What I was. And that I was content.

That feeling of greeting the sun, of experiencing how the day begins and slowly awakens – within myself and around me – is really beyond words. That’s exactly why it’s so hard to motivate someone to try it for the first time. Because that first tough move to get up out of bed in those earliest morning hours is never easy. But it’s worth it. Every time. And every time again.

This also rings true, and especially so, in Jesolo: Because after the sun has risen properly and I have also completed a beach run after my sun salutations and my yoga practice (on the beach that I still have all to myself), I know the probably best breakfast in the world awaits me at the Falkensteiner Hotel & Spa Jesolo. And with a view of the sea and my outlook into the new day, with all the positive feelings the rising sun has triggered and anchored inside me out there on the pier, I enjoy what I have always associated with Italy even more: The perfect espresso.

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