What do you do on the eve of your 26th birthday? ‘Get on it’ to prove you’re still young enough to do so? Throw a party? Cry because you’re now closer to 30 than 20?
Whilst all of the above were tempting, I booked myself into a pop up yoga and wellness event and it couldn’t have been a better choice. I saw the Summer Wellness Event on Instagram via @norridge.popup and instantly knew I had to be a part of it.
I have been getting back into yoga for the past few months and whilst I am loving my sessions with ‘Yoga with Adrienne’ on YouTube in my living room, I do think a class every now and then is really motivating. The Summer Wellness Event was advertising yoga, meditation and energy work with raw, vegan cacao treats afterwards – you can see why I was instantly drawn to it!
The event was ran by the Norridge girls, two lovely ladies who are still currently studying at university whilst running pop up events in the city. They have mainly held food events up until this one, with the last being a pop up cafe for the weekend in the city centre serving seasonal, delicious yet nourishing treats – and as the name would suggest, it included porridge! They wanted to expand their events by doing an evening of yoga and people coming together with good energy, finishing with scrummy food.
They really delivered, as myself and the 14 other people who attended the evening all absolutely loved it and left feeling centered and ready to take on the world with new intentions.
We began by doing around an hour of slow, mindful yoga with Cata Parrishwain who is the most calming and welcoming person you could hope to be leading a yoga class. We focused on doing what felt right for ourselves and our bodies rather than ‘perfecting’ the poses which is such a refreshing view on yoga. I have been to classes before where the instructor has literally came over and moved me into the positions because I wasn’t perceived to be doing it right but actually, you should be relaxing and enjoying the experience not bending about so much you put your back out!
Once the yoga was finished, we moved onto an hour of energy work with Ashleigh Hambling which I must say was the highlight of the session. I had no preconceived ideas as to what I thought energy work was or might be, to be honest I forgot about that part of the evening and was telling people I was going to a ‘yoga evening’. BUT WOW.
We were laying in a circle with a beautiful centre piece of crystals, incense, rose petals whilst the smell of lavender from eye masks we were wearing filled our nostrils. This would’ve been enough to make you feel calm and relaxed but soon Ashleigh began the session, speaking in soothing tones about sharing our energy, bringing into the session with us the spirits of mighty animals and most wonderfully, about us floating away to a peaceful river where we all found our own thoughts. Its amazing how easily you can get lost in someones voice and really drift off to be in that imaginary river, it may sound ridiculous but when you are in the moment and in the relaxing environment which we were, its the best feeling.
Once we were all relaxed she began beating a drum, again it doesn’t sound spectacular but its the most spine tingling sensation and was hypnotic to say the least. Ashleigh moved round each one of us, beating the drum over our bodies in turn and sending us good energy. Once that stopped she played some relaxing music and moved round each of us again, this time I do not know what she was doing but all I know was it was an energy ritual and it involved something burning which smelled amazing.
Once that was over, we all sat round in a circle and to my suprise (and terror) we all were asked some questions by Ashleigh and in our group we shared some personal experiences and feelings. This was such a foreign concept to me, I have never been one for public speaking at the best of times, let alone about myself and my feelings.
We spoke about how the session made us feel, we set positive intentions to leave the evening with and we spoke about any negative feelings or anxieties we had in our lives at that moment. I can’t say I had anything too deep or meaningful to say as, to be completely honest, I’m not too much of a deep thinker. I have been described as ‘happy go lucky’ for a long time and I tend to let any bad experiences in my life wash over me and I am very content with myself – I realise I am in the minority and am very lucky to be in that position – but it doesn’t make for very interesting listening in an energy circle ‘errrr, I have nothing I’d like to change and I just really enjoyed relaxing this evening’ haha. What it did do though was make me open up to strangers in a way I would never normally and also conquer my fear slightly of speaking in public with all eyes on me.
The evening finished with raw cacao hot chocolate and rhubarb mini patisseries, both flaming lovely, I can see why the Norridge pop ups are such a big hit! We were all given goody bags to take home too which was a lovely touch, they contained a scrummy energy ball to eat, a Karma Cup chai tea bag and some illustrated post cards by the talented Pip Kane. I will definitely be keen to attend more evenings like this one, we are so lucky in Norfolk that there is a lot of opportunity for yoga/wellness events and I would recommend attending something similar if you get the chance, even if you think it sounds a bit ‘hippy’ or not for you, it’s amazing how it makes you feel when you start to reconnect with yourself and other people.
Namaste, Just Hollie xox