Snowing Like A Russian Novel

Snowing Like A Russian Novel…
and a perfect day for a meditative Nordic Ski Adventure

It’s snowing like a Russian novel with freezing temperatures, but you move forward because today is the day you will Nordic ski.

Feel the wind and ice forming on your face and every area of exposed skin. Walk slowly toward the paths available in the clearing.

North will take you down a trail of prepared pites or parallel groves cut in the snow. It is neatly cut by machines and frequently the choice of the cross country skier.

South heads out into a mountain of snow untouched by anything except nature. The choice is obvious. With the full realization that opening a track through deep snow can be arduous you move forward, placing your snow boots into the ski and picking up your poles.

The basket at the end of each pole assures you that you won’t sink too deeply into the beautiful white powder. The poles pushing off of the classic ski motion, left leg push right pole, right leg push left pole. Rhythmic, repetitive motion gliding with each stride releasing endorphins and keeping you in the now.

The poles for steadiness and propulsion feel like extensions of your arms and move with you as extended limbs. Rhythmic, pulsating, gliding forward on flat terrain up and down small hills without breaking the stride of this walking meditation. Left, right, left, right there is no thinking now only the beautiful cadence of the rhythm. If you are thinking you are not meditating.

Feel the pulse of the motion and the joy of being out in the natural beauty of the winter forest. See your breath as you exhale in the cold crisp air, and feel the rhythm of your breathing in sync with the movement of the skis.

You are alone and at peace with your solitude. The isolation and lack of communication is growing on you as you leave the sounds of the city behind. They are exchanged with sounds of winter birds chirping, little red foxes looking out from behind their hutches and magnificent bucks with brown shaggy fur snorting like ponies.

The smells of the forest are overwhelming with the heightened senses in this environment. All of the cabins have cedar aroma from burning logs in their fireplaces. Breathe in the beauty and breathe out the stressors. There is a familiar smell of family and fun and a spiritual awakening from the pine forest, bringing up memories of joyful Christmas aromas. Breathe in the joyful scents and breathe out the mental disquietude.

Stop for a rest and sip nourishment from your water bottle. Replenish your cells with the fluid of life. Value the moment and allow yourself to be happy. Relish the moment as feeling really alive with gratitude for who you are and what you have. Prepare to climb the hill in front of you as there will always be hills and valleys in life. Spreading your skis out so they look like the letter V, herringbone up the hill with a passion to reach the other side, feeling a sense of accomplishment as your reach the crest.

Take a deep breath and push off to glide down the hill at a faster speed pointing your skis inward to snowplow and control your descent. Acceptance that change is inevitable for the rest of this ride because at the bottom is a frozen lake. Hitting the lake at full speed in the skating motion of the cross country skier allows you to change on a dime as is often the case with the trials and tribulations of life.

Pushing first with the right leg as an ice skater and shifting all of your weight to the right leg you find your cadence once again and soon settle in with a feeling of balance and grace gliding through life and across the large lake to the other side.

Transfer your weight to control the glide and slide into the snow completing the journey with a feeling of success, a joyful job well done and the serenity of the meditation known as mastering tranquility.

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