So finally it has happened!
I am sitting here in the hills of Karnataka in an Ayurvedic ashram. This place is small and privately managed by a husband/wife doctor team, and his parents who do all the cooking. This place is a village with literally one street which sells some basic amenities. The larger town of Koppa is about 10 miles away. The ashram is three small adjoining buildings in a gated compound, with dense tropical foliage on two sides of the compound. Currently since it is the monsoon season, there is pretty much non-stop rain.
The rooms are decent, very clean, BUT, absolutely no frills. It is down to the basics here also - bed, chair, one table...and there is absolutely no sense of decor. If I was rating the place in hotel terms, it would be half star. There is an attached bathroom, all modern, very clean too. They give you only one bar of soap and one towel when you arrive....and you have to ask for toilet paper.
For food, you have to walk (20 seconds) to the doctor's home where they have made a little dining space. This room could do with some sprucing up. You pick up your plate, sit at the table and the doc's parents come and serve you food. After you finish, you wash your own plate and keep it back.
They are incredibly sweet and caring. For example, my son is fussy about some foods, so they are totally concerned about what he likes and modify the menu to suit his need a little. Of course the menu is still south Indian, and you end up eating rice in one form or another....dosa, rice/sambhar, veggies etc. I think I will devour a pizza the minute I leave this place.
So now the main thing - The TREATMENTS: Dr. A, is the sweetest, gentlest man you could meet. He does a consultation on the first morning after your arrival, and checks the pulse, asks you the symptoms etc. Then they start with very basic generic gentle oil massage, and pouring medicated hot water over the entire body. They give you a cotton loincloth (!!!) which you wear during the treatment. All treatments are done by Dr. A or another doctor they have here. After a day or two, he gets a sense of what you and your body actually needs. My son is going to get the full Panchakarma treatment (very deep detoxification), my treatment is gentler to rejuvenate the nervous system.
The key thing with this place is that they heal you. They really want to heal you. And they deal with the most obscure and complicated of medical issues. I know that Amar's situation could never have been understood and tackled with western mainstream treatment. So I am so grateful that somehow we found the time and gumption to reach here.
Entertainment: NONE. You have to be in a place of complete mental and physical surrender. Just go with the flow, bring your reading material, your knitting, crossword puzzles, etc. There is wifi, sporadic and weak. The electricity goes off now and then with the heavy rain. The solitude and sense of disconnection actually begins to feel good after the first 3 days or so.
Signing off now...will follow up in a week or so with more news about how the treatments and boredom are factor are going. Email me if you have questions or thoughts. Also I am available on my USA number Whatsapp (wifi permitting).