Well we‘ve made it through another year. Today is the shortest day of the year, the official First Day of Winter, Winter Solstice, and for many of the ancient civilizations the beginning of a new year. The Solstice has been celebrated for thousands of years by numerous civilizations. Some celebrated by decorating trees, some with big bonfires, some with gatherings and dancing an drumming, and some with less that pleasant rites that i will not go into. As humans changed from hunters to hunter/gathers folks took more notice of the seasonal changes to know when was the best time to plant, to hunt, to gather, and to hibernate.
In today’s society we have all but eliminated the need to concern ourselves with anything but ourselves. You want summer veggies in February???? No problem, just fly them in from somewhere warm. But many of us that are into agronomy have returned to watching the skies and the cycles of nature. For the past several years at the Frog and PenguINN we’ve been planting and harvesting and generally working in conjunction with the natural celestial cycles in the various almanacs. Whether this has given us a better harvest is still debatable (but Beatrice is really getting tired of seeing more and more bushels of veggies show up in the kitchen every year during the season).
So celebrating the Solstice’s and the Equinox’s, and most of the cardinal points in between, has become a regular thing here. This year’s Winter Solstice is a real treat starting with the Lunar Eclipse last night, and a full moon for tonight. Yes i was one of those that stayed up to watch but thanks to 2 hours of Christmas Caroling (for more on some old fashion town caroling goto http://possumlane.blogspot.com/) earlier in the evening (and being frozen) i opted for the NASA video of the eclipse watched from the comfort of our library with the fireplace on, and short foray’s out to the patio to check the real thing. BUT, with no tripod and my low end Cannon camera (Beatrice was in bed so no great pics from her) my photo attempts
were poor to say the least.
I guess some may call it cheating, but photos of the monitor were the best. And the warmest, especially when i dozed between all the exciting action parts. At 2:45am i went out in hopes of seeing the ‘Blood Red Moon’ that was to be the high light but alas it was just a dark moon. Probably to much light around here. BUT over ‘cross the bay’ in Manassas Va. it appears to have been just right. There was no name to credit this picture to so thanks to whoever you are.
Next is the Winter Solstice Fire this evening.