Before the Sunrise

I have a confession to make.

Dawn and I are not the best of friends, 

In fact we rarely see eye to eye 

I love to sleep, you see 

And this clashes with the sunrise, a time of day I often miss 

However today was different. 

I woke up before her, 

She was still asleep, and the night sky still clung to the horizon, wrapped around the moon and stars.

What I am trying to portray is that it was early 

Very early. 

For me at least 

And so with all my strength I left the warmth of my bed and wrapped on as many layers I could. 

We are in Rishikesh 

One of the most beautiful places,


The mother Ganga 

That is what they call the Ganges river here 

Her spirit runs the river 

Creating a beautiful goddess in the form of a beautiful blue awa 

People come from all over India 

To collect her water for their villages 

She is respected and revered 

Rishikesh is built on her banks

Woven under and up the hills 

The maunga wrapping her in a tight embrace

And so with that context in mind, let me tell you all the things I did today 

Before the sunrise


Bundled up in all our layers, we walked 5 minutes down the hill to the river side 

Once there we found a spot and rolled out our yoga mats, pinks green and blues 

Susie was there (our yoga teacher) dressed in beautiful whites and creams. 

And together for about an hour, we did a beautiful yoga session 

I did a yoga session, 

Led by Susie, a renowned and incredible yoga teacher, 

On the side of the powerful Ganga River. 

How utterly incredible 

However our Sun salutations did not provoke the sun to rise early 

She stayed tucked behind the maunga

The faint blue hue of dawn led us through our motions 

And once yoga was finished, 

And before the sun had poked her head over the mountains, 

Susie, Claire, Cornelia and I walked through the streets to an Ashram 

It was called the Sivananda Ashram and it felt like a very special space 

Rishikesh can be quite loud. 

There are many big speakers on cars, packed with young men making the trip here for their villages. 

They often blast music that echos, vibrating off the surrounding mountains 

This is joined by the echoed sounds of people starting their day

However this ashram was a quiet space 

With private steps leading down into the river

It was there we saw the first peak of the sun over the mountains 

But only a peak 

She had not fully risen yet 

After a few moments spent there, we walked to a store for Chai 

Waiting for our Chai to be made and poured into clay pots, we stood and watched the day start over the Mother Ganga

With Chai in hand and content smiles on our faces 

We finally watched the sun beams rise and settle over the banks of the Ganga 

The sun had finally risen 

And I looked to her 

Feeling filled to the brim with gratitude 

For this space I was in 

For the places I had been

And I wondered if I could do it,

If I could be a morning person?

Maybe in India I could 

Maybe not so much in New Zealand 

But it was definitely nice this once 

This blog post is dedicated to my family and friends who know just how much of a morning person I am not 

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