July 10, 2012

Wandering Wanderlust. ~ Anthony Actis

Moments ago I arrived at my house in Golden, Colorado from the Wanderlust Festival at Copper Mountain. After a somewhat long, congested drive, I’ve been able to process what I’ve experienced and gained from the weekend.

My first realization happened upon my arrival Thursday afternoon.

I felt really awkward for only buying passes for the music. In fact, I didn’t attend a single yoga class the entire time. Perhaps this simply demonstrates my frugality, as there were many magnificent yoga teachers at the festival.

Something inside me simply had no interest in paying several hundred dollars for the ticket though.

I watched, loitered, observed, meandered, mingled, hiked, and danced to great tunes, but no yoga.

It seems obvious that one may feel a bit out of place at a yoga festival without, well, doing the whole yoga bit. But the feeling was rather strange, beyond what I would have anticipated. While I haven’t generally attended large yoga festivals in the past, I have been to a few.

This one felt different, as if social behavior had somehow regressed to grade school.

Packs of [brand x] wielding yogis and yoginis moved throughout the festival grounds in cliques. For the most part it felt quite closed off, a secret club of sorts.

Individual interactions with strangers went about as expected. Wonderful people with beautiful smiles and open hearts were willing to share a few moments of their time in friendly discourse, speaking as if we were decade-old friends catching up.

I even left the weekend with several new acquaintances and a couple new friends.

I had the privilege of meeting Waylon Lewis himself, and hearing him speak about how individuals in the yoga community can better serve the world. I somewhat strangely met elephant journal’s Lindsey Block and shared an amazing conversation with her over an early morning hike.

Currently, I am a little confused about the dichotomy of Wanderlust’s vibes between the micro and macro scales, between the bulk group of attendees and the individual.

Why was there such a large discrepancy? Certainly large groups cannot really avoid anonymity, but I think the secret password must have been left at home with my yoga mat.

The weekend was relaxing and enlightening. I’ve learned a lot about my own perceptions toward the yoga community and its different manifestations. I may not have practiced asana at the various classes, but I was able to marvel at magnificent trees, dirty my feet on trails, see my breath in the cool morning air, as well as meditate and write secluded in nature.

Time in Colorado’s mountains works as excellent therapy for the mind and body.




Anthony Actis is starting up the next chapter of his life as a funemployed youngster and graduate student with ideas and dreams that make him dangerous to conventional society. He is preparing to drive from England to Mongolia to raise money for The Lotus Children’s Centre in Ulaanbaatar, and have himself a proper adventure. He is a scientist, an engineer, a philosopher, a yogi, an adventurer, sometimes a bit of a lush, and completely drawn toward everything associated with his native homeland of Colorado. He finished a 200-hr teacher training in Denver but wants to grow his personal practice and knowledge further before teaching. As a citizen of the world, he is enamoured with francophile culture, asking difficult questions, people watching, airports, being uncomfortably polite and courteous, early morning asana, existentialism, pain au chocolate, fake mustaches, awkward facial expressions, and Oxford commas. Feel free to connect via my travel blog or Facebook.


Editor: Thaddeus Haas

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