RSS 2.0   Atom


Sidewalk signs and leaky air conditioners

June 12, 2015

As Karuna enters it's fifth week and euphoria turns to the nitty gritty of daily life, I remain loving my new job and continue to be amazed by the wonderful (and sometimes challenging) surprises and lessons that arise. One Saturday as a family browsed the store, I suddenly heard a gasp and what sounded like a water fixture. I turned to see water pouring from the ceiling tile. I grabbed the nearest plant to catch it and ran over to the GM Market next door to borrow Girma's mop bucket. There is nothing worse than a leaking air conditioner on a brand new carpet...


I should say that Girma is a very nice person. He offered words of encouragement in my first week as he revealed that he made a total of .80 cents on his first day. Nancy, the owner Hawthorne Nail Care, that flanks the other side of Karuna also was super supportive saying that she was very slow when she opened but that things are picking up. Ximena from Skeleton Tattoo, a few doors down, lamented about the first two years of her business and we chatted about annoying sidewalk sign permits. All of this might seem discouraging but actually I have found it quite helpful. It gives me perspective. As my friend Mike from Paloma Clothing said to me, "Rome wasn't built in a day" which makes me laugh every time it echoes in my mind.


Did I mention sidewalk signs? I never thought that the placement of sidewalk signs could get so political! Girma and I had to do some serious negotiating to make sure that we both had our fair share of sign space and there were some tense moments!


According to Google, 894 people saw Karuna Contemplative Living on Google and 12 people asked for directions to Karuna! There is truly a market for meditation cushions. I ask almost every customer where they found us and, if they are buying a cushion, they inevitably say they found Karuna on the internet. I even had someone tell me that they googled "meditation store." As Portland's first meditation store, I rest my case.


I went to Mercy Corps NW to speak my loan people there and somehow made the discovery that my loan guy meditates! Not only that but he studies with a wonderful dharma teacher and is going on his first long retreat this summer. Talk about coming out of the woodwork! And get this, he's been meditating on a Thermarest pillow! He promises me he'll be in soon to pick out his very own meditation cushion. I daresay, he's likely to have a challenging retreat experience without a comfortable seat!


In other news, Karuna is hosting meditation instruction the 2nd and 4th Monday of the month. To spread the word, I started a new Meetup group, Portland Meditation Meetup. Membership went from 9 members to 37 overnight! We are now a group of 45 members. Want to join? Go here:


This week ended with a wonderful surprise -Tom Grant released his first relaxation/meditation cd. The title of the first track? "Anandi." Wow! The CD, "The Light Inside My Dream" is for sale ($15) at Karuna Contemplative Living.


Last but not least, Deb Kuprunas photos are up on the Karuna Art Wall and selling for just $25 each. They are wonderfully quirky and highlight Portland's subtle beauty. Perfect gift item!


Karuna also houses two licensed massage therapists- Here is more about them:

Stephanie blends her healing energy with deep tissue massage, integrating active and passive stretching, fascial work and breath work. Graduating in April 2010 from Northwest Academy for the Healing Arts in Seattle, Stephanie has focused on impacting a community through alternative health care. She is actively expanding her massage education and touch by
attending workshops and training courses, eager to provide her clients with new aspects of bodywork.

In addition to her bodywork, Stephanie is a classically-trained vocalist, composer, and improvisor, who creates unforgettable performance-happenings. She has her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts, and teaches Sound, Performance, and Vocality. After furthering her artistic practice on the East Coast, she has recently returned to the PNW, and has a massage studio in SE Portland.


Five years ago, a pinched nerve and a numb thumb inspired Wesley’s already growing curiosity with the healing power of sound. Attending massage school at the Pacific School of Awareness & Bodywork on the island of Kauai only deepened his desire to find a way to effectively reduce the stress and tension which accumulates in our bodies from our day to day
living. The result is SomaWave Therapy – a sound treatment which allows one to experience deep relaxation and peace of mind, either at home or as part of a massage session with a licensed massage therapist.
(503) 319-9176


Hope to see you soon!



Return to Blog Main Page