When we left Los Angeles it was just beginning to cool down and move towards Winter. From Fiji to New Zealand and through Bali we were in warm weather and the heat of Summer the entire time. Landing in Amsterdam was the first cool weather we had felt in months and I love it. I have always loved Fall and Winter, being able to bundle up and drink hot teas next to a roaring fire is my idea of a great evening.
The difference that the change in climate has made to my practice has been both a blessing and a challenge. In the heat working up a sweat was no challenge at all, I just had to stand on my mat and begin Ujjayi breathing and the heat would start to flow. My joints felt open and some poses were easier than they had ever been, the flow of practice felt smooth and free. The downside of all that heat however, I tended to move through practice pretty quickly and sometimes lost sight of the transitions between the poses, the moments between each breath. In cool weather my practice automatically becomes slower and more conscious. My muscles feel a little tighter and that slows me down but mostly it is the intention of the practice that changes. I no longer feel the need to rush to get to everything, it feels so luxurious to take my time with each pose and feel the heat of each breathe. I am not made for a hot climate, the chill of Amsterdam this time of year suits me just fine.