I want to start this post with a disclaimer. Now, I am going to try very hard to concentrate on writing this, but I must warn you, it’s going to be difficult. I haven’t felt this high, this excited, this incredibly jazzed, pumped, stoked, thrilled and generally amped in a very long time.

It might have something to do with the fact that I am sipping on an iced latte right now that is about 90% sugar (In the normal world, I don’t drink coffee), but I think it has more to do with the fact that I just spent my entire day at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and now find myself in the most quaint, idyllic coffee shop in the most quaint, idyllic town I’ve ever seen: Fairfax.

I have that feeling usually reserved for small children, or adults when they’re on vacation—that I-can-do-anything-I-want-to, I-am-invincible, I-am-going-to-go-climb-a-tree, eat-candy, or go-explore-unknown-territories feeling—hence the sugary latte.

So what was it, exactly, that has me so jazzed—so jazzed that I am actually using the word “jazzed”? Like I said, I spent my day at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, which is just outside of Fairfax, in Marin County; and specifically, I spent my day attending Anushka Fernandopulle’s Mindfulness and Innovation retreat.

It was a day filled with contrasts, perfectly mirrored in the Center’s dried, barren hills and the lush, green of the forests dotted here and there. We began the day with a silent meditation—immediately, I sank into it fully and comfortably; that same feeling of burrowing beneath your covers after being gone all week. It was a very special feeling, facilitated, I think, by the sheer consciousness of the room.

Over the course of the day, we meditated—sitting, standing, walking; we practiced mindful listening; we practiced mindful eating; we chatted, we were silent, we laughed, we cried (okay, I cried); we even got a chance to draw some portraits and play with some improv. In other words, it was amazing, and I must reinforce that it was solely the people who made it so.

Anushka was an amazing, calming, and completely cool and relatable leader. After chatting with her, I found out that she is a regular at Spirit Rock, for both day-long retreats and longer ones as well. She also hosts retreats and even weekly meditation and dharma teachings all over the Bay Area. To see what Anushka’s up to, and I recommend you do, check out her website.

Equally as important were those helping with the retreat—the Spirit Rock employees, volunteers, and even each of us attending. The very air buzzed with positivity—plus it smelled like pine needles and spices from the surrounding land.

All told, it has been a day for the books. If you have not been to Spirit Rock Meditation Center, I can’t recommend it enough. If you haven’t yet hear of Anushka Fernandopulle’s work, do yourself a favor and check her out. Oh, and if you haven’t been charmed by Fairfax yet, do so on your way back from the Meditation Center. I am so moving here.

Namaste, everybody.

Do you know of any events coming up that I should check out? “Send Us Feedback” below and let me know! I hope to talk to you soon—or see you out at Spirit Rock.