Sunday, July 4, 2010

Week 6 Update

This week I have a cold (it's winter where I live). And as much as the start of the week up until Thursday was chic in its eating, on Friday the wheels fell off. I embraced the medicinal properties of Doritos, brandy and Nestle Scorched Almonds. Friday and Saturday there was no salad with lunch. So shall we talk about chic improvements in other areas this week instead?

Thursday lunchtime I attended my first yoga class ever. And it's all thanks to LuxeBytes. Marsi's enthusiastic post extolling the virtues of yoga had me thinking (a lot) about going. In the past I've dismissed yoga simply because it's trendy. If everyone else is on the bandwagon, I'm no-where to be seen. Thankfully these people have moved on (maybe to Pilates?), and yoga is now just a fabulous and gentle exercise option.

It was Iyengar yoga, because apparently there are different types.

I am so pleased I went! There were only four of us in the class, so it was almost like a private lesson. The teacher is Swiss, and she was very helpful in a caring yet firm way. I have decided to go once a week at this stage and am really looking forward to next Thursday.

Afterwards I felt exhilarated yet calm, in a positive mood and nicely worked out without being completely wrung out. And once I know the moves and poses I can challenge myself more. I could feel that I had had a workout the next day, which is quite amazing considering it's not jumping up and down on a step or lifting weights.

I chose a class which is within walking distance of our shop. It is approximately 25 minutes walk there and back and I'm really glad that the walk will be part of my yoga class too. No-one there had fancy dri-fit clothing on either, which I'm really happy about. Making this observation I remembered the saying 'Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes' by Henry David Thoreau. I think about that saying a lot for some reason.

So, go the yoga, and merci beaucoup to Marsi at LuxeBytes.

On a totally more superficial level I have been wearing my hair in a French twist/chignon more often. Practice makes perfect, and I need the practice. I normally wear a sheer-ish pink-ish gloss lipstick, but with the chignon you must wear red.

With my fair colouring I don't want to be a caricature, so I choose a soft sheer red. And when I do this I automatically reach for my pearls. So two days this week I wore my hair in a chignon with red lipstick and pearls. Even in jeans and a long-sleeved t-shirt I felt tres chic.

I really want to practice this hairstyle to have it be second-nature for me to do. I asked my husband whether I looked 'Paris girl or old lady' when it did it the first day. 'Paris girl' he said without missing a beat. Correct answer. He would always tell me if it was old lady though.

Sometimes when I ask him about an outfit he'll hesitate and say something diplomatic. He's a Libra after all. We Librans are known for our diplomacy (if I haven't bored you with this before, my husband and I were born on the same day of the same month, one year apart. I'm the older woman/cougar. It's fun having our birthday on the same day. Rather than buy each other a gift we do something like stay the night at a fancy hotel or go all-out for a posh dinner even though we're on a strict budget, ordering everything on the menu).

I learnt something this week. A valuable lesson. My winter cold started on Wednesday and by Thursday I was feeling much better as I had been bombarding my system with high doses of vitamin c (10,000 mg per day). This has worked for me in the past and seemed to be working for me this time.

We had a regular dinner date out with a small group of friends (7 including us) where we meet up once a month on a Thursday for dinner at a BYO restaurant. We would all take turns organising the restaurant so everyone had a chance to visit their favourite, and you would discover others favourites too.

The person who chose this time had made sure three weeks earlier we all knew the date. On Thursday, the day of the dinner we received a call half an hour before the time we were to meet to say 'bring a jacket, we're sitting at an outdoor table'. It is clear to me now that the person in charge of booking had not actually booked until the day, or possibly the day before, to be charitable to her.

My first thought was 'there's no way I'm going out with a cold, to sit outside on a chilly and rainy winter's night for dinner'. Then my husband and I decided we couldn't let them down at the last minute and went. We sat outside and froze. What made it worse is that the person responsible came a full one-hour late.

The next day I felt worse again, and it's only today that I'm starting to feel better. I know cold temperatures can't make you sick, but it can't be good for a body that is trying to recover to be subjected to low temperatures. Warmth is helpful.

As my Uncle T would say 'what would you do differently next time'? Next time I would put myself and my health first, not worry about putting someone out (even if they didn't bother themselves too much with organising the dinner) and sit this one out.

I was seriously annoyed with this person, and also at myself for going. I only thought afterwards that my ideal French girl Sabine would not have gone. She would have practiced self-preservation. A valuable lesson was learnt.


  1. I'm sorry you have a cold and had to endure that dinner. 1 hour late? Maybe it's because I'm super punctual, but that is very rude. I'm loving your chignon description! How very chic. And I'm intrigued by yoga. I'm so tired of trendy exercise programs requiring all sorts of equipment and harsh jarring motions. Yoga may be something to actually enjoy while getting fit. Bravo!

  2. That is beyond rude. Seriously! Who does that, showing up an hour late to dinner?? Good grief. My condolences, especially with your cold.

    Our family allergist turned us on to sinus rinsing about six years ago, and with God as my witness, no one in the family has had a sinus infection or lingering cold since we started. You use saline solution and a neti pot or a rinsing kit by Neil Med ( to flush germs and bacteria out of your sinuses before they have a chance to make you sick(er). I travel with one -- hose out my nose as soon as I'm in the hotel or back at home. Air travel always used to make me so sick from the recycled air. Now? Never!

    So glad you enjoyed yoga. The little classes are so nice; I love the personal attention you get in the beginner classes. Also nice that you don't have to deal with any of the hardcore yoga types in the beginning -- though I have to say, don't ever let them intimidate you. It's always YOUR practice, and wherever you are is just fine. Everyone was once a beginner! And believe me, once you're on the mat, you and everyone else in the room will go straight into your own selves, focusing on your own breath, your own moves, your own abilities. No one pays any attention to what you can and cannot do. It's liberating.

  3. Stephanie, I'm with you on exercise. I like it gentle. That's why I love walking too. I can walk speedily or I can meander. I don't have to pay to do it and I can do it whenever I want. Yoga is a good addition to this I think.

    LB, I'm intrigued by your sinus rinsing kit. I will definitely look into this as I used to get sinusitis a lot and still get a bit snuffly. Maybe that's why I get colds.

    Stephanie and LB, I am a punctual person too and we are always at the dinner date (or anywhere) on time. This person is a medical professional and she was called into work that day, but she didn't dwell too much on our questions pertaining to that and I suspect she's just one of those drifty types who finds it impossible to be somewhere at a set time.

    I have noticed she has been late other times but hadn't thought anything of it (and not late to the extent she was the other night). Those of us who are there on time are always left wondering 'Should we order, should we wait'.

    Stay tuned.

  4. LB, forgot to mention, my friend who recommended this particular yoga teacher to me said the exact same thing to me yesterday - how the busier classes are funny to watch as the regulars get a bit precious with their floor space. I'm so glad I had a good beginner experience. I thought yoga was meant to make you a nicer person!


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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