learning to park

breakdancer/yogi owen robertson transforms his vw rabbit into a hermit’s refuge in the middle of the city

illustration by owen robertson

excerpted from the print magazine…

A few years ago, I bought a maroon ’79 Volkswagon Rabbit in Vancouver for $400 with the explicit purpose of driving it to Toronto and living in it. I wasn’t running from the law or hounded by poverty. I made this decision willingly, and look back upon those days with extreme fondness.

I can trace the dream back to high school when I read On the Road by Jack Kerouac. The part where Sal visits Carlo Marx at his hut in the mountains inspired me. The simple elegance of living with essentially only books and rice as one’s possessions appealed to me on many levels, ranging from my spiritual fervor all the way down to my Scots thriftiness, or “cheapness” if you will. Other inspirations were provided by Thoreau’s Walden, as well as all the monks, nuns, wise hermits, since the dawn of time, that secluded themselves for spiritual purposes.

Yoga teaches us to see things in their essence, and a car is really just a hut on wheels. So when I tell people that I lived in a car, and they get all worried about me, what they fail to understand is that I was taking part in an ancient and noble tradition. That being said, I must admit that there was another side to my motivation. I was on a quest for self-healing, and felt that doctors could not help me …

Web Exclusive: Watch Owen break it down (Ol' Skool) and demonstrate the yoga of breakdancing...

Owen Robertson is currently living at Yasodhara Ashram in the mountains of British Columbia, where he has been practising Karma Yoga and cultivating his character since September. Later this year he intends to apply to art school. If you have any advice on that subject, please email him at: raplife5000@gmail.com raplife5000@gmail.com

Copyright ©2007 ascent magazine, first Canadian yoga magazine, yoga for an inspired life