The downtown F train isn’t exactly the place I’d expect to find my zen. Usually it’s the place of inbetweens–where we find each other on our way. So it was a bit of a surprise when my subway ride came alive the other day.
Upon pulling out of the 14th street station, I noticed three guys setting themselves up with djembes. Unsure if this would be worth unplugging for, I waited with one earbud intact. It took only seconds for me to see these weren’t some guys just pounding on bongos…they were the real deal! My view was slightly obscured (damn center pole!), but it didn’t matter. I didn’t need to see the show.
I felt it.
There’s a very special place in my heart for the djembe- it created the soundscape on our walk down the wedding aisle. To me — there’s no other instrument that speaks so directly to the soul. And on this journey from 14th street to West 4th I felt the pulse of the drum work its magic. My body, cleared of all the extraneous stuff (thoughts, plans, stress, and miscellaneous clutter), felt lighter.
I got connected.
Now, please remember this was NYC’s mass transit! As I’m sure you know or can imagine…there isn’t much connection happening here. Unless it’s the F train transfer at Broadway / Lafayette. Or the nudging from a bulging briefcase into the back. Or the slight shove as someone races to make their exit. There’s rarely eye contact. And hardly an excuse me.
These djembe guys cut through subway mores. They left us smiling. One lady applauded.
If this can happen on the F train, imagine the power it can have with a movement practice. I invite you to put on some djembe beats and find your flow.
Try this on for size…
What music or instruments can always call you into your dance?