If yesterday’s post seemed to end a little abruptly, that’s because I couldn’t get my phone to scroll down far enough to let me add a proper ending. I also couldn’t enlarge the picture of the hearts. Blogging on a phone isn’t the best! I can tidy things up when I get back to London, I suppose.
Yesterday I played hooky during our late-morning walking meditation and went exploring in town (where I found the graffiti above). The Buddhist Center is on one of the main roads through town, but it’s a rather characterless stretch of highway with a supermarket, some mini malls and some uninteresting shops. But walking toward town brought me into the older heart of Waldbrol, which has some cool old timbered buildings, and some covered with slate shingles and interesting ornamentation. Yesterday was a religious holiday of some sort, so everything was closed and the church bells were ringing.
And look what’s in town — the Circus Florida! My home state! Did they know I was coming?
Yesterday afternoon an event called the Sound Boat was on the schedule. I had no idea what this could possibly be, but it turned out to be fascinating. A man named Elmar brought an instrument he had created, consisting of a sort of open box suspended from a wooden frame. A person could lie in the box, and Elmar would play the strings attached to the underside — all the same tone. The result was a sort of all-encompassing yet minimalist experience in which you could hear and feel the vibrating strings while lying in the secure, enclosed space covered by an orange curtain. Apparently it’s used in music therapy. I’ve never seen anything like it, and Elmar built it — I believe it’s unique.
The sound reminded me a bit of a sitar. Lots of water images flashed in my mind as I lay there — rain, a river, pebbles skipping on a pond. Elmar said he could also sense communication from people as they lay in the boat — in my case, he said he sensed something about my mother. This is interesting because my brother and I had exchanged e-mails about her just before the session and she was definitely on my mind. Who knows — maybe Elmar is like a fortune teller, giving his “customers” a vague reference that could be connected to any recent thought or experience. But he says a lot of communication is extra-verbal and the boat helps him pick up on that.
All in all, it was fascinating.
And now, back to retreating! But first, here are some bugs, because I can: 🐛 🐞 🦋 🐝