Uh-oh. It's been playing galore since I last checked in. Thursday was the Plymouth Farmer's Market with Steve and Denya Levine. Four hours solid of tunes, but rewarded by more vegetables, breads, and cheeses than you can shake a spare zucchini at (and I have lots of spare ones... that part of the Lindsays garden is VERY productive... sigh...). Then last night was a private party on Sagamore Beach... lovely people, and three more hours of playing. Today is Rowes Wharf hotel in Boston for a wedding. One of my favorite spots in the world, and I get to play music there. This is a gift from the Gods, indeed. Oh, and then there's tomorrow: Sue plays with Inchicore at Clash of the Ash, a dark little watering hole in Quincy Center.
So fun, but the problem beneath this all is the bod. As in, a neck and upper back so sore I can't turn over in bed at night. That's what 39 days of practice will do, if you don't watch it. I haven't been watching it.
And so, we come to the next layer of complexity. Not only is it not enough to just practice flute (also we must play sax), and not only is it enough to just gig for four hours solid (we must also do longtones)--now it's not enough to just practice. NOW I HAVE TO EXERCISE TOO? Did I really sign up for this?
Yes, unfortunately I did.
A few weeks ago, I was speaking with a friend in Florida. Annie B. is a licensed acupuncturist and yoga instructor. We were chatting about the 100 days. I said that it was a spiritual endeavor for me. I had also wanted to include daily yoga into my routine, but there just wasn't enough time. It's hard enough to just get down to practicing every day, never mind also stretching. So, I concluded: practice alone would be my personal spiritual practice.
Never one to avoid the truth, she pointed out ever so gently, and in just about these words, "Yeah, but you know the Buddhists and the Hindus also include the physical in their practice...they say a fit body is also necessary for spiritual health." Ah, good old exercise, that thing I used to do religiously... til I had a baby. I've been putting that part off. Maybe til at least kindergarten. Or college.
Darn Buddhists and Hindus. I was working off of the spiritual buffet plan: pick and choose only what I like. This was where I thought I could step away from Eastern fare, put this part of the meal in a doggie bag and save it for later. Get back to the meat-and-potatoes Catholics and the Protestants for this portion of my spiritual sustenance. THEY never talk about physical health. They let me eat big steaks, chocolate chip cookies, and giant cups of coffee.** I never learned about downward dog in Sunday School or Christian summer camp, and I turned out alright, didn't I? Didn't I?
Then again, Rev. Clinger never really spoke about music as a spiritual path, either.
There's no escaping this fact: my neck hurts. A lot.
Soul Mama's gotta start stretching too. Damn. Right after the massage on Monday...
**I'm forever grateful to the Buddhists, though, for letting me drink beer.