The leaves rustle on the slight breeze. Gray skies settle in and if it was colder, Monk Ki might think of snow. Instead, he looks at the shoots of bulbs breaking through the leaf mold. Overhead a squirrel squaks and chatters, warning the world of yellow cat on the move.
Perhaps if we trained squirrels we could save Homeland Security a few dollars. We've got enough nuts. Editorial content slipped in as I await the arrival of Master Ho Ha. A bell sounds in the distance and like clockwork he strides into view.
"Monk Ki! Why aren't you sitting?"
"I was Master Ho Ha, just minutes before you arrived."
"Right there where you see the leaves compressed by my weight." Monk Ki points at the ground.
"You've gained weight."
How can you tell that by just looking at the leaves, Master Ho Ha?"
"Who is looking at the leaves? I'm looking at your belly." Master Ho Ha laughs. "It doesn't take a zen master to see that someone has gained weight. All one needs is the ability to observe."
"So you think I've gained weight."
"Observation. Nothing more. As long as you don't take on the weight of the world."
"I'm not going to."
"I'm sure you're not. I'm sure you're not." Master Ho Ha laughs.
"Tomorrow is New Year's Day. What are your resolutions?" Monk KI hopes for words of wisdom that will teach him what to do himself.
"Resolutions?" Master Ho Ha looks at his student. "Resolutions."
"Yes, you know what you are going to strive to do to be better." Monk Ki can't believe he needs to explain this to his teacher.
"Perhaps I will find a better teacher." Master Ho Ha look away. "Yes. That might be a start."
"But..." Monk KI starts to question this comment but realizes that his teacher has suddenly disappeared with a rustle of leaves.