I’d read about Provence’s unforgiving mistral wind, and now I was battling it in the Ancient Roman theater in Orange, France.
The sky was a clear, brilliant blue on this autumn day, but frigid gusts grew stronger the higher I climbed. Struggling to maintain my footing, I tried to channel lessons learned from years of doing balancing poses on a yoga mat. I could taste a grit in my mouth, the dust of limestone ground down over the millennia.
When the wind got to be too much, I sat upon the chilly concrete seats and admired the splendor of my surroundings. The 2,000-year-old theater’s spectacular backdrop wall soaked up the day’s last hours of sunlight. Weathered columns and niches were still bathed in a golden light, but a statue of Augustus had already fallen into shadows.