Me and Bandit in the snow

The snowflakes, driven by the blustery north wind, blow into my face and nonchalantly dust the grass and the pines. Once again, Bandit, my trusty feline companion, is my teacher. He stands near me, tail curled around my leg, effortlessly present in the moment, while I struggle to let go of thoughts about the stuff I “should” be doing so that I am present too.bandit-in-woods

I suffer from nature deficit disorder, a common malady of our culture, especially among our youth. Sometimes I’ll spend a whole day indoors without even walking to the mailbox—writing, e-mailing, Googling, calling—yet I know that my body, mind and spirit all cry out for—more time on the trails around my home, in the mountains that surround us. I know at a cellular level that nature nurtures me, yet I forego its healing powers in order to handle the “important” matters of living—earning a living, saving the world, satisfying my intellectual curiosity, watching TV.

The wind continues to gust, but the snowflakes slowly diminish. As a terse reminder of our warming climate, the ice crystals that had collected promptly vanish without a trace. And Bandit and I saunter back to the warmth of the fireplace. As we approach the back gate, Bandit is spooked by something he hears and quickens his pace. I stride to keep up, wistful that our connection with the Earth is drawing to a close, at least for today.

From a 2/4/07 personal journal entry

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