I tell you, it’s a monumental struggle for me to get onto the mat these days. It’s like this every winter. Feeling rested after a good’s night sleep, I lie in bed staring into the darkness waiting for my alarm to go off – the supposed clarion call beckoning me to mat (there’s never the thought of voluntarily jumping onto it). It too cold and too dark – how can you do a Sun Salutation when the Sun’s not coming up over Ontario for another couple of hours?

By the way, a white Christmas is now a dead certainty in this part of the world. We are to get 30 cm of snow between now and Saturday and as I gaze outside my study window I can tell you that it’s coming down now. A lot of shovelling for me then. I wouldn’t want to shovel snow everyday but I enjoy it well enough. The snow changes all the acoustics and there’s a muffled, coddled silence about the place; especially out here where we are, in the near wilderness – only the sound of your shovel scraping along the driveway, the crunching of the powder under your boot, the sound of your own breath, and just occasionally, the quieted whine of a skidoo flying by on the lane running alongside our land. It’s a welcome excuse to get outside at a time when I really need one.

Back to the asanas though, inspite of my inner struggle, I’m still getting up to practice pretty much every day…but with massive reluctance. Today though, I was up way too late to practice – but I decided to fit one in during lunch. After changing though, I remembered how bright it was last night and so I checked my calendar. Of course, I saw that it was indeed a Moon Day. Great timing. I skipped Tapas intact – and instead of practicing, I’m writing this.

Quite apart from asanas, this time of year really challenges the entire practice. Our house is full of Nanaimo Bars, fruit cake, red wine, and swiss chocolate. And all these parties! My company is having a children’s party this Saturday – 1,000 kids are expected! I’m taking our 5 year-old but we have to leave early because she has another party immediately afterwards. And then we’re off to a holiday dinner at my uncles’ in the evening. That’s all we seem to have done on weekends for the past four or five weeks – eat and drink. Well, I see it as an opportunity to exercise restraint and control – to build strong positive samskaras. Sigh.

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