South Coast boat (c) 2013
First day of autumn. And with it - rain. All through the night. Such a welcomed sight, sound, smell. In between the gusts of wind and shaking leaves, a collective sigh can be heard. A kind of 'ahhhh' as the water soaks into the trees, flowers and earth.
The temperature has also dropped. Being a born and bred New Englander, I don't go much by the southern hemisphere's idea of seasonal change dates. Here, the new seasons are heralded in on the 1st 's- 1 June; 1 September; 1 December; and 1 March - autumn. In my bones I know the seasons change on equinox and solstice dates. So when people here say things like, 'This isn't much of a day for the first day of summer!' I hold my tongue and think, 'Give it three weeks.'
Old timers in the parts where I grew up used to say that if you look at the weather on the equinox, you will get an idea of prevailing weather for the next six months. I have got to say, the times I took note of this, it proved eerily accurate. What no one wanted to see on March 21 or September 21 was the weather blowing a strong nor'easterly gale. The old timers also used to say that winter wouldn't come until the ponds were full. In other words, if there wasn't sufficient autumn rain, then the winter would be mild. Another observation which proved its truth many times.
These bits of Yankee wisdom were told to me by old timers who lived their lives on a small island, 14 miles to sea. There is a reason why talking about weather is a commonality - it is something we all live with every day. And when you live in a small community, buffeted by weather, wind and tides, you develop keen observational skills. The weather determines your livelihood. We come from agrarian societies - the weather meant feast or famine. Being able to read the weather patterns, and intuit what they meant, could be the difference between life and death.
We live now in a society where other people tell us what the weather is. Sometimes, listening to their forecasts, you have to wonder if they have windows to the outside or if they have ventured out of doors. They rely on computer mapping to tell them what's coming, instead of their senses, memory and intuition.
Sound familiar? Sometimes we can get so far from our own selves that we believe what others tell us instead of what we intuitively see, feel and know to be true - in our bones.
The old timers didn't have the technology we have today. Yet I would listen to their observations every time over what a weather report on TV might tell me. They listened and felt what was going on around them. They were connected to nature and to community. They took the time to listen and observe. And those skills allowed them to sense things 'in their bones'. They put trust in what their surroundings were telling them.
We have had a very hot and dry summer and throughout it all my husband has been saying, at least once a week, 'I think we could be in for a cold winter.' To which I think, 'Yeah. Not going to happen unless we get rain.' So, as I sit here on the first day of autumn (southern hemisphere time) and the weather is cool, blowing a gale and raining, I think it could very well be a cold winter. And I am thankful for my husband's persistence in getting us set up - there is already wood in the shed and a new, hopefully warmer and more efficient, wood stove waiting for installation.
I will be noticing the weather again on the equinox but for now, I am listening to my intuition which is saying, 'My husband might just be right...'.
Bright blessings for this transition between seasons. Remember that all you need to know is within you, if you are able to still the mind and listen. If you are feeling out of touch with this, step outside. Immerse yourself in nature. It will help you to hear and feel what you need to know. It will ground you back into your body; back into your intuitive self. Happy autumn/spring.
Early morning. Quiet. Dark. A gentle fog blanketing the nearby hills of Mt Misery. Heavy rain overnight leaving the houses and neighborhood cleansed from the dust and debris. A perfect time to meditate. I meditate every morning, but this morning I was up early, not able to sleep past the early morning dreams. So candles lit my way as I sat in quiet contemplation. I was thinking about the creative healing workshops I offer, excited by the prospect of holding one for a client and her friends. I had offered a workshop on the weekend, but not enough interest resulted in it being cancelled. This scenario can get discouraging. But it's all part of what I do and what I offer. Sometimes it resonates and sometimes it doesn't. And sometimes it resonates down the track and comes back in the most unlikely place or way. I opened my eyes just in time to see something jumping in the shadows, coming towards me from under my alter. A frog. My first impulse was a small amount of terror - how will I get it out of this space since my husband isn't home to save me from the creature? But that is quickly surpassed by a smile and gratitude. What a gift to have this amphibian in my sacred space! But I've only got myself to rely on to get him out. And as lovely as it is to have him visit, he can't stay. How did he get here, in this furthest space from any door? I need a container to catch him and all I have is my water glass, which ironically has a sticker on it which says sacred. The water glass is full so I try to empty it by drinking it - this is never going to work. It's way too early in the morning to be chugging water. And I don't want to leave, for fear of not finding the wee frog in amongst all that litters this space. I move to the window and open it. We have no screens so I dump the water outside. Then capture the frog in its sacred and mobile aquarium of sorts. He stretches his long legs against the glass as I pick it up and move to the window. He is happy to hop out and makes the long drop to the ground to hop away to tell his story to his tribe about this freaky white woman who tried to eat him! But he escaped through sacred space and lived to tell the tale. Phew! I grab the animal cards to read about Frog. Before I even get to the page, I remember Frog is Cleansing. There is talk of tears and releasing and water and rain. And how without rain, everything dies. And how our tears are sacred and shouldn't be hidden or shunned. Crying is a release and through release, such as rains or tears, new life can begin. And I am reminded of the frustration I sometimes feel when what I offer isn't taken up. How the tears flow and how I can't verbalise what is going on for me but crying always seems to clear some channel which helps make everything look brighter. For me the frog was a reminder that all is well and as it should be. After rain comes growth. After tears comes a brighter day.