Let us train our minds to desire what the situation demands.

I do believe that I failed to fulfill this recommendation this past weekend.

Let me explain.  Sunday, my wonderful husband gave me a “Get Out of Child Free” card, and I decided to spend it by engaging in some Ovate work.  One of my favorite places to meditate in on the banks of the Mulpus brook, which is the largest body of moving water in our town.  She is quite friendly as streams go (very unlike the one near our apartment when we lived in Concord)—almost chatty at times.  It’s little wonder that I find her banks a most pleasant place upon which to engage in druidic pondering.

Now, I had been hiking the previous day, and since the warm weather has begun to smother us, I was “blessed” to be feasted upon by a number of blood-sucking insects.  I grew up in New Jersey, where the mosquito is jokingly called either the State Bird or State Air Force.  But that doesn’t make me like the little…darlings…any better.

However, for some reason, my tiny brain made the leap of logic that, “since I’m a tree hugging earth-worshipper here to meditate on the glories of nature, clearly this will make me immune to any acts of aggression from the insect populations of this river.”


Even sitting in the sun and surrounded by dragonflies, I was unable to meditate or even write for more than a few seconds before feeling another poison-laden proboscis trying to penetrate my tender flesh.  For about 20 minutes, I repeated Seneca’s advice like a mantra against the mosquitoes.

Twenty-one minutes and seventeen bites later, I ran like a sally, scratching and cussing the whole way back to the car.

So clearly I need some practice “desiring what the situation demands.”  I’m thinking maybe I should start with something a little less irritating than mosquitoes, though–the current heat wave, perhaps?  Then maybe by the time I reach the Druid grade I can brave the Summer Gauntlet with more success.

Or not.


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