The Wind in the Willows

the-wind-in-the-willows A twelve part series written by: Alan Graham

Part One: Flash

Inspired by his own bedtime stories which he told to his son, Kenneth Grahame published the classic book of children’s stories. One of the most beloved names in English literature, the author  of The Wind In The Willows, the bewitching riverbank tale of Mole, Ratty and Toad of Toad Hall.

 This story is strictly about Mole and in particular about my analysis and subsequently my hypothesis of his behavior.  

Mole has a sudden case of spring fever, gives up on his house-cleaning, and wanders in the fields and meadows. He finds himself by a river (he has been such a stay-at-home that he has never seen it before) and meets the Water Rat, who invites Mole into his boat, something else he has never seen before. “Believe me, my young friend,” Rat says dreamily, “there is nothing —absolutely nothing —half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”

A world of friendships, the joy of carefree wandering, of picnicking, and playing has opened for Mole. Half way through the book, the Mole, the Water Rat and the Badger go to Toad Hall to try to help their friend Mr. Toad who has a bad habit of reckless driving. Toad has quite a few adventures. His irresponsible living and extravagance lead to the loss of his home to the barbaric stouts and weasels. The four friends go to battle to regain Toad Hall. The book ends with a banquet where all the friends rejoice at Toad’s return.

Mole is literally on a manic ride and his character is merely a reflection of anyone who suffers from extreme manic episodes without interlude.  

In real life, certain manics (I will call this 0ne “Flash”) do not suffer from the rise and fall, or the highs and lows, they are actually highly motivated and they really get shit  done.

Flash to observers, especially those closest to him, generates a turbulence of manic enthusiasm, which to all intents and purposes looks chaotic, showing wild and apparently deranged excitement.  When the pace is utterly manic, he appears frenzied, intense, and ready to break apart or explode at any second.

 Throughout history, it has been the this very same behavior that has achieved great successes, built great empires and won great battles. By going beyond the limits, exploding the norms, or to dream the impossible dream, is to embark on some exhilarating and mysterious adventure in some far off land where the future is uncertain.
In the story Toad goes off the deep end when he discovers “The Motorcar” then embarkes on “Mr Toads Wild Ride” through the countryside, passing Ratty’s house, aggravating policemen and terrifying a farmer and his sheep. Making a right turn,  and heading for the docks  but quickly making a sharp turn in a different direction and enter a warehouse full of barrels and crates containing explosives.
Arriving at a Pub in the wrong side of town he meets up with some barbaric stouts and weasels.  He is hustled out of his car and his stately home “Toad Hall”.  His reputation lies in ruins and when things could not get much worse,  he is arrested for driving while under the influence. 

 When all looks bleak a remarkable reversal of fortune occurs and Flash/Toad’s life is restored once again into a state of  natures perfect order and pleasant bliss . V

The mystical digression at the center of the book “The Piper at the gates of dawn” The god of nature in the form of Pan is a pagan myth, and shows us a quartet of endearing characters, friends with real virtues contributing to each other’s moral growth.

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