Byron Bay, a popular hippie hangout between Brisbane and Sydney on the Gold Coast was the destination of choice on the GPS before we left the farm… Slowly meandering our way there as road trips should, we encountered the legendary night manager Charlie in Tara caravan park, found more veggie oil on Fry St of all streets, crossed the Great Dividing Range mountains, drove Lockyer Way (apparently so named in honour of a famous Australian rugby player); found a sign informing that Dundee in Scotland was only 16,263km away; had fun finding the spare keys after locking them in the car; found a place called Moo Moo that yes played on its name and was covered in all things cow related and tried a new fruit called a rambutan. Most tasty. Very much like a lycée.
Reaching Byron Bay, opting to stay in Broken Head Campsite, right beside the sea, the sounds of the waves travelled up the slopes the campsite lay on. Significantly cooler than Queensland but easterly facing with not much shade, there were some pretty hot mornings by 8am! Enjoying a morning on Tallows Beach, having acquired a vest top tan and attempting to even this out with strapless tops, I quite paradoxically managed to burn an interesting shape on my back and outline my bikini mark on my leg apparently missing it with sunscreen… Not quite what I intended to achieve… ;-). Finding two snakes, a duck sign (got to love the sign banter), returning to the beach that my relatives took me to last year, a wander round town found street art, funky shops, a tasty Mexican restaurant and an amazing campervan sporting 'if people were meant to pop out of bed we'd all sleep in toasters'. A van right after my own heart… Also climbing the steps at the pass in Palm Valley and having the best veggie burger I have ever eaten at the Top Shop cafė, it was most nice to relax there for a couple of days.
Focusing on relaxing, and knowing it was still on my bucket list, I made a conscious effort to undertake a yoga class before we left. Due to timing, a purna yoga class ended up my class of choice. New to me, the instructor introduced it as an easy going restorative class. Given many props of a chair, a bolster, two rugs, a belt and a brick, I certainly didn't feel alone in my work…! Given the option of an opening pose to relax into, I lay on my back, tried to zone out the world and focus my attention on the class. Not too much work, used to harder classes, it was good to feel the relaxation through my muscles. It is also the first time I have ever used a chair as a prop… Whilst missing the energy and exercise of Hatha yoga, undoubtedly the best thing about this class was the chavasanah. All through the class I had found it hard to keep my mind still. Concentrating on my breath in the beginnings of chavasanah it finally managed to empty. The instructor walking us through the colours of the chakras, orange had a particularly relaxing effect on me. I left the class feeling relaxed and stronger in mind of things that had been floating that day in my head. A definite good choice for a reintroduction having not managed any yoga since July last year, and choosing an intention that has stuck with me past the bounds of the class, I have decided to try and make more effort and time to practice it when I can.