My morning routine is pretty much the same every day.  I hear my 5:00am chime (and smile) and then start moving through my day.  Usually, I do some stretching, self acupressure massage and meditation, followed by my qigong/taichi practice.  The length of this practice is determined by my teaching schedule for the day.


Predictably on Wednesdays I’m on the beach before sunrise, drawing and walking the labyrinth, practicing my qigong/taichi, and then leading a sunrise qigong class.  Predictable.  Each time I arrive at the beach in the dark, I look forward to perhaps seeing a turtle laying her eggs or maybe even baby turtles making their way from the comfort of the nest deep in the sand to the vastness of the ocean.  I have been fortunate enough to occasionally see a Loggerhead, Green and even a Leatherback laying her eggs over the course of years I have been coming to the beach.  This season, I have not had the pleasure.  I’ve seen turtle tracks and baby turtle tracks, but no turtles (just heads popping up in the ocean).  Predictably, we see the turtle volunteer ride by checking for new nests and hatchings each morning around sunrise.


Several days ago I got up and did my usual practice and then decided to head to the beach to continue my practice by doing some qigong walking.  Even though it was later than I usually go and probably hotter than I would like it to be, I went anyway.  At 8:30am the beach was already bustling, mostly with fishermen.  The ocean was quite active with bait fish hopping out of the water, which obviously meant the bigger fish were also there.


You’re probably wondering where I’m going with this story. I decided to walk south on the beach to get away from the busyness where I could get into the rhythm of my qigong walk without having to constantly step around the fishing poles. Once I got going, the rhythm of the walk and the rhythm of my breath became steady and meditative.  After about 25 minutes I decided to stop at a quiet section of beach and practice my qigong/taichi.  Just as I was finishing my practice, the turtle volunteer came along to inspect a recently hatched nest and dig up the hatched eggs.  She explained she was later than usual because she had slept in.  I watched as she carefully dug up the newly hatched nest from two days ago.  Three baby green turtles popped up and she collected them in her basket.  She explained that she had a few more collected from another nest and she was waiting until nighttime to set them free (too much activity in the ocean during the day).  The baby turtles typically make their way to the ocean at night to avoid being seen by predators.  


What a wonderful encounter.  By changing up my routine (and the volunteer changing up her routine) I was finally able to see these beautiful baby turtles at a time when I wouldn’t have normally been on the beach, at a place I normally wouldn’t have stopped.  Oh, and as an added bonus - green lights all the way home!!


So, change it up and see what happens!!


As the chi flows,