In October I received an email from Mikela, founder of Yoga Satya and the words that jumped off the page and captured my immediate attention were ‘paradise awaits’.
These words accompanied by some enticing images and Mikela, of course, were all it took for me to change my already confirmed travel plans. This in itself was no mean feat but one I considered worthwhile. My trusty assistant Amy and Penny, my new travel co-ordinator were wonderful rearranging and booking everything.
I first attended Mikela’s classes some years ago when she taught at the Boy Charlton in Sydney. Her classes combined traditional philosophy with great instruction. Those two things along with Mikela’s knowledge and genuine care for her pupils made her classes a stand out.
Mikela held the retreat on the island of Koh Tao, a magical island in the Gulf of Thailand, a two hour boat trip from the island of Koh Samui. When I stepped off the crowded boat on to the noisy pier I was immediately surrounded by confusion but was quickly scooped up by our calm teacher and a trusty driver and transported up into the hills and beyond to Baan Talay, a blissful hideaway retreat.
Baan Talay consists of several Thai style bungalows set in natural tropical landscape and is perched above the crystal clear waters of Ao Leuk Bay. It’s a magical spot.
I just fell in love with the view from my simple room. I kept the doors that led on to my small balcony open so that the sound of the ocean was first thing I heard when I woke and last thing I heard before my eyes closed at night. The sea is one of my favourite sounds. There were other sounds too, sounds of the cicadas’ and geckos, birdsong and the rustling of local creatures in the surrounding bush.
Dev the owner and his staff were all lovely and attentive and provided us with fresh delicious meals each day and there was also transport available for trips around the island.
The Sharla, where we practiced our daily yoga was a large open hut nestled in the natural tropical landscape with magnificent sweeping views over the sea. It was the perfect place to witness the beginning and the end of each day.
We practiced for two hours in the morning and two hours in the evening. The classes were calm but for me they came with some challenges. At times it was tough and I have to admit to having the urge during one morning class of running from the Sharla screaming. However, thankfully, I pulled myself together and breathed through it. The result was worth it.
For me my time was to short, I would have been happy to retreat from the outside world for much longer but I know from experience it’s better to leave wanting more.
Mikela generously shared with us pearls of wisdom for which I will be forever grateful and I think it’s fair to say we all as her students benefitted from her big heart.
Once again I am grateful for another beautiful life experience and the chance to have shared it with new like minded souls.