Did you know Relay for Life got it's start right here in Washington State? Yep, Dr Gordy Klatt of Tacoma--appropriately named the City of Destiny. In 1986 the first team relay was held at Stadium Bowl. Since that time, thousands of teams in communities all over the United States have held Relay for Life events. One of the things I especially like about this event is each Relay reflects its community. They all have some aspects the same like the Survivors Lap and a remembrance ceremony with luminarias, but I think it's important that each event is unique--just as each person's battle with cancer is unique. I also think it's a great event in that it has some way for everyone to participate. Giving money is generous; actually participating in some concrete way is, to me, true altruism. I've been fortunate to witness their compassionate undertaking to honor the memories of those lost to cancer; to support those still fighting and to take an stand on bringing an end to cancer.
Walking around and around a track or large field for hours and hours takes its toll on the body (personal experience will attest) I thought I could help the walkers by guiding them through some yoga leading them through asanas(postures) they'd be able to go through again later if needed...perhaps even sparking an interest in beginning a yoga practice! I've shared yoga with Relay walkers all around the greater Puget Sound.
This year began with the Auburn Relay. Our Spring was cool and wet so I was relieved when I woke up and saw a clear, bright blue day. That clear sky also meant it was cold...in the low 40s cold! I could see tents covered over for extra protection from the chilly night...a handful of hardy souls were walking. It was some of those hardy souls that braved yoga. And even though everyone (including me) stayed bundled up we continued as planned with practice. You might notice I don't have any photos of us actually doing yoga. A woman offered to take pictures with her camera and send them to me...didn't follow through unfortunately.
Eastlake High School was the site of the next Relay. I've been here many times before: chaperone, walker, yoga teacher. They had a GLORIOUS day--sunny and since it was later in the afternoon a nice, soothing warmth to the air. LOVED how there were male-types that were willing to give yoga a try! There are more pictures from Relay for Life events in the Gallery.
Last weekend I visited Snoqualmie--home of the breath-taking Snoqualmie Falls--for my last Relay. The sky was clear blue again. As much as I like sleeping in, it would have been a better setting if I was there at 6am again. It was SOOOOO hot! The 'route' was along the perimeter of Centennial Park--a great setting, but a lot of the time walkers were out in the glaring sun. I was very grateful to have 16 attempt, but slowly 1 or 2 at a time, numbers dwindled as they needed to find shade and get out of the heat. This was a natural a hot yoga as you can get! Again, you'll notice a shortage of pictures. I let a volunteer use my cell phone so I'd actually have them, right? Well, after attaching them to an email to myself I erased them from the phone's gallery before seeing if they actually arrived...and they didn't--another lesson learned!
If you haven't participated in your community's Relay for Life I'd highly encourage you to find a team OR form a team and put cancer in its place...EXTINCTION!
Health, Wellness & CURES!!