Friday, December 30, 2011

The Crone's Year in Review.....

Tomorrow is the last day of 2011!

As I go about my daily business (whatever that may be) I'll suddenly realize that I'm thinking back on things that have happened this past year.  My musings are not in any way negative, 2011 has been a wonderful year despite injury and disappointment.

The Crone musing about the year past!
Perhaps this is a condition of "Crone-hood" - you take the good and the bad and find acceptance and joy in both.  Without the negative you really don't appreciate the positive.  It's the balance in your life that keeps you sane and whole.

For me this year saw a "trip of a lifetime" shot down in flames, however the flames will hopefully bring about change in an area of the world that needs it!  My Crone thoughts and wishes go out to all of those around the world who dream and fight for freedom and dignity.  The year saw me injure my hand to the point that it will never work correctly again.  I can live with that....a small price to pay for otherwise good health...something that as I age is becoming more and more important to me.  Maintaining my health is taking more and more of a focused effort and commitment.  I look around and see so many who do not have good health and I consider the effort well worth it and count myself blessed.

This year I feel I have progressed in my study of Belly Dance.  I have performed several times and truly enjoy the experience.  As one who always considered herself to be at best uncoordinated, dancing was always something that "I couldn't do!".   My teacher and good friend has shown me that work, joy, and learning to accept yourself and your body enables you to do amazing things.  The sisterhood and friendship I have found among my fellow dancers is the best gift of all.  Thank you my sisters!  Dance on!

I've enjoyed communing with my "dark flock" of crows.  Becoming friends with a local flock of crows has been enlightening .  I knew, but now have experienced the amazing intellect of these beautiful birds.  We (humans) are not the only thinking, tool making, creature on this planet.
The most important part of my life is of course my dear spouse "Himself" - and my two loyal mini-minions Rupert (my one eyed blind English Bull Terrier) and Boomer (my slightly psychotic Mini-Australian Shepherd).  Without my "boys" my life would be as dark as a crow feather.  My boys fill my life with joy, laughter, lightness of spirit and happiness.  I love them. 

I've enjoyed exploring the path of the Crone.  I'm finding that my life is more rich and exciting than ever.  When you open yourself to the wonders of the universe and accept the gifts that are presented to you, you realize that magic is real.  "The eye sees only that which the mind is willing to comprehend" - Henri Bergson....to this quote I'd like to add, "only that which the mind is willing to comprehend and the heart accept!".  

2012 is just a number of hours away.  The new year stretches out before us like a blank canvas waiting for each and every one to paint their new masterpiece with love, work, creativity, joy, happiness, tears, heartbreak, and above all with magic.  This little Crone is looking forward to it.

Le Petite Crone says:  Happy New Year to all....may your year be blessed with magic!    

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Winter Solstice


December 21st is the Winter Solstice, here on "The Peninsula" the solstice officially happens at 9:21 PM.  The Solstice has historically been an important date in our Northern European culture.  

The solstice itself  was probably a special moment in the annual cycle of the year even during neolithic times.  Astronomical events, which during ancient times controlled the mating of animals, sowing of crops and the doling out of winter reserves between harvests were of major import.  Early civilisations had only the stars and the heavens to look to for guidance. This is attested to by physical remains in the layouts of late Neolithic and Bronze Age archaeological sites such as Stonehenge in Britain and Newgrange in Ireland. The primary axes of both of these monuments seem to have been carefully aligned on a sight-line pointing to the winter solstice sunrise (Newgrange) and the winter solstice sunset (Stonehenge). Bonfires were a common method of celebration for the ancient Celts and others, the symbolism of the bonfire represents the returning sun.  Even though the days may be cold, the sun is in the sky for longer and longer periods of time heralding the warm days of spring and summer, days when death is further away.

The winter solstice may have been immensely important because communities were not certain of living through the winter. Starvation was common in winter between January and April.   In temperate climates, the midwinter festival was the last feast celebration, before deep winter began. Most cattle were slaughtered so they would not have to be fed during the winter, so it was almost the only time of year when a supply of fresh meat was available. The majority of wine and beer made during the year was finally fermented and ready for drinking at this time.

Since the event is seen as the reversal of the Sun's ebbing presence in the sky, concepts of the birth or rebirth of sun gods have been common and, in cultures using winter solstice based cyclic calendars, the year as reborn has been celebrated with regard to life-death-rebirth deities or new beginnings such as Hogmanay's. In Greek mythology, the gods and goddesses met on the winter and summer solstice, and Hades is permitted to enter Mount Olympus (his domain being the underworld, he of course does not get accepted at any other time). Also reversal is yet another usual theme such as in the Roman holiday of Saturnalia where slave and master symboically exchange roles for the day.  Christmas is celebrated near the winter solstice because the early Christian church overlayed many of it's celebratory religeous dates onto "pagan" feast days and celebrations to win over the populice to Christianity.  It's a good fit, the rebirth of the sun and the birth of the son of God.

Take a moment on this Winter's Solstice to reflect on your status, where you are, what you have accomplished, what you wish to accomplish in the coming year.  Light a candle, burn a log, build a bonfire.  Take a moment to realize that the night is long but will begin with the morrow to be shorter.  The days of sun will lengthen and the new year is on it's way.  What was old is gone, leave behind what you wish and focus on what you want, what is new.....

Le Petite Crone says:  Tomorrow is another day....and a longer day.  Enjoy. 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Zombies! - They ARE real!

Himself and I just returned from a holiday visit to Reno, Nevada - otherwise known as "Las Vegas lite!".  I use to live in Reno and still have family in the area.

We visited my son, his wife and our grandchildren, attended our grandson's 6th birthday party and generally had a good time.   I also was able to spend some time with my brother who also writes a blog "The Geezer's Guide to Life" (you can check his out using the link on the left side of this page).  We visited with cousins one of whom we haven't seen in well over 40 years!  Time flies when you are having fun I guess.

So, I know you are wondering what a holiday visit with family has to do with "Zombies"..a good question.  My son is a big fan of zombie movies and we had a fleeting conversation regarding the creatures.  He was commenting on being prepared for the upcoming "Zombie Apocalypse" which he laughingly told me was due to happen in the near future.  This thought unfortunately took up residence in my brain.

...and then I started to see them.....

Zombies....

...they ARE real.....they frequent the late night and early morning hours of Reno casinos...in fact they are probably in every casino no matter where it's located. 

Casinos are odd in and of themselves anyway.  No windows, no clocks, dark, flashing lights, mirrors, noise...it's all very disorienting.  I like to imagine myself in a space station - like Deep Space Nine.  Casinos are just an unnatural setting.  Now however due to my son's fascination with Zombies I know the truth.  Zombies live in casinos.  I've seen them. 

Walking through the aisles of the slot machines you see them, slack jawed, glazed eyed....obviously the living dead.  I saw one female Zombie, she had about eight empty beer bottles lined up by her, oxygen machine pumping who knows what into her empty head, scraggly dirty white hair, a white cane (she was blind), smoking cigarettes (explosion anyone?) her face pressed up against the screen of the slot machine.  It was eight in the morning.  I kept my distance in case she might need some brains to go with her beer and oxygen.  You see them walking about the machines, in search of whatever it is they are looking for, lurching from one bright flashing light to another.  Pale faces, empty eyes.....it was hell.


So, now I'm watching.  Perhaps I'll start to see zombies everywhere.  Who knows.  It was an interesting experience of seeing how a fun conversation got stuck in my Crone's brain, expanded with my imagination and ended up creating a reality!  I'm glad I'm back home!

Le Petite Crone says:  If you think it, they will come!