Shelter. Gimme it.

How to build a fire

Click for EZ to follow firestarting instructions.

For a short time, we were three last night at Picnic Shelter #1. Three men and a fire. Beau Philips arrived late on his way to a standing team trivia engagement and I left early to make a 7:30 meditation meetup, so we overlapped by only about 30 minutes. Not exactly the long evening of fire and fellowship that one might have hoped for, but a decent stab at it just the same.

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How long does it take for a routine to become a tradition?

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The meditation meetup was pleasant enough. Silent sitting and silent walking. A rin gong to mark the intervals and a candle to calm the monkey mind. But there’s another group that meets on Wednesday mornings at Furman inside a small pagoda-style temple. It’s an old temple, too, one with no electricity and a tree-filtered view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Much more conducive to higher vibrational states, I’d say, than Tuesdays at the Unitarian church on State Park Road. Picture a place — you see them everywhere — that could be a middle school or a prison, but happens to be a church. Cinderblock walls painted noncommital colors, industrial carpet glued down over concrete slab floors. Moreover, and more to the point, attending the Tuesday meetup cuts my Tuesday shelter time in half … and I’m a morning person anyway … and … (light bulb) … Greenlink going, Swamp Rabbit Trail coming back … damn!

Scene: American real estate developer bursts into reception area. “Miss Buxley! Get me that pagoda salesman on the phone, chop-chop! Yes, I know what time it is over there, wake him up! How’s the name ‘Tranquility Explosion!’ strike you? Black letters with the exclamation point made out to look like a big red firecracker.”