we found a level 1 yoga class at an oddly formal studio called Fitness by Design. they have a waiting room with Family Circle magazines and a bowl of those hard peppermint candies you get at restaurants. later, they sent us an email thanking us for our business: "we know you have other fitness options."
despite the formalities, the class felt warm and soft and yoga-like. unknowingly we had stumbled upon the first session of an eight-week intro to yoga class, so it was full of people who knew nothing about yoga. there were about 10 of us, all slightly older, some overweight, all open-minded. they asked eager questions like "now mary, what do you mean by sit bones?" and when she gave the instruction to let your heart light shine, a woman smiled and said out loud, apparently in appreciation of the poetry of it, "so good!"
we did extremely gentle joint warm-ups for a good 45 minutes, then a variation of a half-salutation on our own, then tree pose. the group was full of surprisingly solid trees, even though one of the two men called out "i think i'm a tree in a windstorm!"
we finished with restorative childs, restorative heart opener, and of course savasana. afterwards my mom signed us up for the whole 8 week course and we went and celebrated with a chocolate croissant and a pear puff pastry.