Today, I went to my first shoulders, lower back, and hips yoga class. But I've given it a different name - the Pau Hana class.
Class was at 4pm. The sun was beating down, and it had been a long day. The gentleness of this class was perfectly matched to the deepness of it. Hip openers and shoulder openers let tension flow right out of my muscles. I started off tight and tense, but found myself sinking deeper into poses than I ever have before. When class was over, I truly did not want to leave Shivasana, but a long Om and a few conscious breaths brought me back to a better reality.
Walking out of the studio with fresh eyes, I felt so content. I turned down the street, and took in the view - a water sculpture with the harbor beyond. I saw cheerful faces everywhere. People were leaving work and heading to happy hour - or Pau Hana as it's known in Hawaii. And that's when I realized that today, for me, yoga was my Pau Hana.