Yesterday was a busy day with all the cooking. We had a nice dinner and a good time sitting and talking with Sasha. We got all the food put away, put together a good share of the leftovers for him and then Tempus took him home while I finished up. Once Tempus was back we went splat. 🙂
Now I’m going to buckle down to getting some more of this stock priced, now that I have it all in one place.
Tempus killed off a huge housefly that’s been buzzing around the shop and everything smells like air freshener, despite having all the doors open for the last two hours!
He was planning to go to Florence for the better gas price, but with the paper run tonight, he’s not going to push it. …and we just found out that a long-time friend lost their granddaughter yesterday to driving off the road…
Today’s Plant is the Evergreen Violet, Viola sempervirens. This is a pretty plant that looks like nothing much through 9 months of the year here on the coast, but is spectacular in March, when it covers the ground with beautiful golden flowers on a deep blue/green background and still lovely in April/May. It is indeed evergreen, not withering to the ground, although it sometimes is overshadowed by grass. As any viola it is Feminine, ruled by Venus, but unlike the blue violets (corresponding to water) the Evergreen Violet corresponds to the element of Air and the Sun – Protects against malevolent spirits, brings changes in luck & fortune, wear to help with headaches, dizziness and to bring calm and sleep, wear in a green sachet to heal wounds.
The eve of St Andrew’s Day – Some marriage-related superstitions have become part of Saint Andrew’s feast day, November 30, and some on the eve. In some parts of the Czech Republic and Slovakia, young women would write down the names of potential husbands on little pieces of paper and stick these into little pieces of dough, called halušky. These are a dumpling. When cooked, the first one to float to the surface of the water would reveal the name of their future husband. More info here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Andrew%27s_day#St._Andrew.27s_Eve
Gertrude Jekyll (29 November 1843 – 8 December 1932) was a British horticulturist, garden designer, craftswoman, photographer, writer and artist. She created over 400 gardens in the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States, and wrote over 1,000 articles for magazines such as Country Life and William Robinson’s The Garden. Jekyll has been described as “a premier influence in garden design” by British and American gardening enthusiasts. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gertrude_Jekyll
A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust. – Gertrude Jekyll, British horticulturist, 184301932
There is no spot of ground, however arid, bare or ugly, that cannot be tamed into such a state as may give an impression of beauty and delight. – Gertrude Jekyll, British horticulturist, 184301932
The shop opens at 11am today. Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org If we’re supposed to be closed, but it looks like we’re there, try the door. If it’s open, the shop’s open! In case of bad weather, check here at the blog for updates, on our Facebook as Ancient Light, or call the shop.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 12/11 at 9:12pm Diana’s Bow – On the 3rd day after the new moon you can (weather permitting) see the tiny crescent in the sky, the New Moon holding the Old Moon in her arms. Begin on your goals for the next month. A good time for job interviews or starting a project. Take a concrete step! God/dess aspect: Daughter/Son/Innocence – Associated God/dess: Vesta, Horus. Phase ends on 11/30 at 7:06pm.
Now the Moon pairs with Saturn, as shown above. The waxing crescent Moon appears 2° to Saturn’s left this evening. The two stand some 15° above the southwestern horizon an hour after sunset and will make a pretty pair with the naked eye or through binoculars. Of course, Saturn makes a tempting target any night this week. The ringed world shines at magnitude 0.6, more than a full magnitude brighter than any of the background stars in its host constellation, Sagittarius. The best views come through a telescope, however, which reveals a 15″-diameter globe surrounded by a spectacular ring system that spans 35″ and tilts 24° to our line of sight.
Vega still shines brightly well up in the west-northwest after dark. The brightest star above it is Deneb, the head of the big Northern Cross, which is made of the brightest stars of Cygnus. At nightfall the shaft of the cross extends lower left from Deneb. By about 10 or 11 p.m., it plants itself more or less upright on the northwest horizon.
Although Thanksgiving weekend signifies autumn to many people, the stars of both summer and winter appear prominent in late November’s evening sky. If you head out around 9 p.m. local time and look toward the west, you’ll see the bright stars of the Summer Triangle. These three luminaries — Vega, Deneb, and Altair — stand out nicely. Deneb appears highest (nearly halfway to the zenith), while the brightest, Vega, lies lower in the northwest. Now, if you turn around and face east, you’ll find stars normally associated with winter. Betelgeuse, Rigel, Aldebaran, and Capella all clear the horizon before 8 p.m. and appear conspicuous an hour later.
Uranus (magnitude 5.7, in southern Aries) is well up in the east after dark and stands highest in the south in late evening.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky map for November –https://www.almanac.com/content/sky-map-november-2019
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis/Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22
Runic half-month of Isa/ Is November 28-12 Literally, ‘ice’: a static period. The time of waiting before birth. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, 1992
©2019 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Ruis/Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH), elder – Celtic tree month of Ruis (Elder) commences (Nov 25 – Dec 22) – Like other Iron Age Europeans, the Celts were a polytheistic people prior to their conversion to (Celtic) Christianity. The Celts divided the year into 13 lunar cycles (months or moons). These were linked to specific sacred trees which gave each moon its name. Today commences the Celtic tree month of Elder.
Elder or Elderberry (Sambucus) is a genus of fast-growing shrubs or small trees in the family Caprifoliaceae. They bear bunches of small white or cream coloured flowers in the Spring, that are followed by bunches of small red, bluish or black berries. The berries are a very valuable food resource for many birds. Common North American species include American Elder, Sambucus canadensis, in the east, and Blueberry Elder, Sambucus glauca, in the west; both have blue-black berries. The common European species is the Common or Black Elder, Sambucus nigra, with black berries.
The common elder (Sambucus nigra L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (33 feet) in damp clearings, along the edge of woods, and especially near habitations. Elders are grown for their blackish berries, which are used for preserves and wine. The leaf scars have the shape of a crescent moon. Elder branches have a broad spongy pith in their centers, much like the marrow of long bones, and an elder branch stripped of its bark is very bone-like. The red elder (S. racemosa L.) is a similar plant at higher elevations; it grows to 5 m (15 feet). Red elder extends its native range to northern North America, and it is cultivated along with other native species, but common elders are seldom seen in cultivation. Elders are in the Honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
F 29 High 2:32 AM 7.2 7:30 AM Rise 10:34 AM 5
~ 29 Low 7:51 AM 3.2 4:39 PM Set 7:35 PM
~ 29 High 1:34 PM 8.5
~ 29 Low 8:40 PM -0.9
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Make this a divine day!
~ Do not expect to make headway with a frail sailcloth. – Eyrbyggja Saga, c.20
~ We can’t say why we search, except that there seems to be an innate need, in each human being, to know who one is, what we’re here for, how to live more poetically. — William Segal
~ It is the greatest of all mistakes to do nothing because you can only do a little. Do what you can. – Sydney Smith (1771 – 1845), Clergyman and writer
~ By all means marry. If you get a good wife, you’ll be happy. If you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher… and that is a good thing for any man. – Socrates
I hear the thrush, and I see
Him alone at the end of the lane
Near the bare poplar’s tip,
Singing continuously. – Edward Thomas (1878–1917)
Winter Solstice – 21 December 2005 – Ancient Solstice Meaning
Christmas, ironically, antedates the Nativity of Christ, and December 25 is a fudge. In the third century AD the Church fathers chose that day as Christ’s birthday, with good reason. It happens to fall approximately on the Northern Hemisphere’s Winter Solstice, and December 25 (Midwinter’s Day) has been from time immemorial a day sacred to the rebirth of the light of the sun in the depths of winter.
This day was the Festival of Natalis Sol Invictus (the Birth of the Undefeated Sun) in ancient Rome.
Ancient peoples also commemorated the Babylonian Queen of Heaven, Osiris in Egypt, Dionysus, Helios,
Adonis, the Celtic Cernunnos, the Syrian Baal, Attis, Mithras, Balder and the Norse goddess Frey – all celebrated on the ancient Winter Solstice, and mostly solar saviours and dying gods. Most of these deities were given similar titles: the Light of the World, Sun of Righteousness, and Saviour.
The Folded Napkin – A Truck Stop Story
I try not to be biased, but I had my doubts about hiring Stevie. His placement counselor assured me that he would be a good, reliable busboy. But I had never had a mentally handicapped employee and wasn’t sure I wanted one. I wasn’t sure how my customers would react to Stevie.
He was short, a little dumpy with the smooth facial features and thick-tongued speech of Downs Syndrome. I wasn’t worried about most of my trucker customers because truckers don’t generally care who buses tables as long as the meatloaf platter is good and the pies are homemade.
The ones who concerned me were the mouthy college kids traveling to school; the yuppie snobs who secretly polish their silverware with their napkins for fear of catching some dreaded “truck stop germ”; the pairs of white-shirted business men on expense accounts who think every truck stop waitress wants to be flirted with. I knew those people would be uncomfortable around Stevie so I closely watched him for the first few weeks…
I shouldn’t have worried. After the first week, Stevie had my staff wrapped around his stubby little finger, and within a month my truck regulars had adopted him as their official truck stop mascot.
After that, I really didn’t care what the rest of the customers thought of him. He was like a 21-year-old in blue jeans and Nikes, eager to laugh and eager to please, but fierce in his attention to his duties. Every salt and pepper shaker was exactly in its place, not a breadcrumb or coffee spill was visible when Stevie got done with the table.
Our only problem was persuading him to wait to clean a table until after the customers were finished. He would hover in the background, shifting his weight from one foot to the other, scanning the dining room until a table was empty. Then he would scurry to the empty table and carefully bus dishes and glasses onto his cart and meticulously wipe the table up with a practiced flourish of his rag.
If he thought a customer was watching, his brow would pucker with added concentration. He took pride in doing his job exactly right, and you had to love how hard he tried to please each and every person he met.
Over time, we learned that he lived with his mother, a widow who was disabled after repeated surgeries for cancer. They lived on their Social Security benefits in public housing two miles from the truck stop. Their social worker, who stopped to check on him every so often, admitted they had fallen between the cracks. Money was tight, and what I paid him was probably the difference between them being able to live together and Stevie being sent to a group home. That’s why the restaurant was a gloomy place that morning last August, the first morning in three years that Stevie missed work.
He was at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester getting a new valve or something put in his heart. His social worker said that people with Downs Syndrome often have heart problems at an early age so this wasn’t unexpected, and there was a good chance he would come through the surgery in good shape and be back at work in a few months.
A ripple of excitement ran through the staff later that morning when word came that he was out of surgery, in recovery, and doing fine.
Frannie, the head waitress, let out a war whoop and did a little dance in the aisle when she heard the good news.
Bell Ringer, one of our regular trucker customers, stared at the sight of this 50-year-old grandmother of four doing a victory shimmy beside his table.
Frannie blushed, smoothed her apron and shot Bell Ringer a withering look.
He grinned. “OK, Frannie, what was that all about?” he asked.
“We just got word that Stevie is out of surgery and going to be okay.”
“I was wondering where he was. I had a new joke to tell him. What was the surgery about?”
Frannie quickly told Bell Ringer and the other two drivers sitting at his booth about Stevie’s surgery then sighed: “Yeah, I’m glad he is going to be OK,” she said. “But I don’t know how he and his Mom are going to handle all the bills. From what I hear, they’re barely getting by as it is.”
Bell Ringer nodded thoughtfully, and Frannie hurried off to wait on the rest of her tables. Since I hadn’t had time to round up a busboy to replace Stevie and really didn’t want to replace him, the girls were busing their own tables that day until we decided what to do.
After the morning rush, Frannie walked into my office. She had a couple of paper napkins in her hand and a funny look on her face.
What’s up?” I asked.
“I didn’t get that table where Bell Ringer and his friends were sitting cleared off after they left, and Pony Pete and Tony Tipper were sitting there when I got back to clean it off,” she said. “This was folded and tucked under a coffee cup.”
She handed the napkin to me, and three $20 bills fell onto my desk when I opened it. On the outside, in big, bold letters, was printed “Something For Stevie.”
“Pony Pete asked me what that was all about,” she said, “so I told him about Stevie and his Mom and everything, and Pete looked at Tony and Tony looked at Pete, and they ended up giving me this.”
She handed me another paper napkin that had “‘Something For Stevie”‘ scrawled on its outside. Two $50 bills were tucked within its folds. Frannie looked at me with wet, shiny eyes, shook her head and said simply: “Truckers!!”
That was three months ago. Today is Thanksgiving, the first day Stevie is supposed to be back to work.
His placement worker said he’s been counting the days until the doctor said he could work, and it didn’t matter at all that it was a holiday. He called ten times in the past week, making sure we knew he was coming, fearful that we had forgotten him or that his job was in jeopardy.
I arranged to have his mother bring him to work. I then met them in the parking lot and invited them both to celebrate his day back.
Stevie was thinner and paler, but couldn’t stop grinning as he pushed through the doors and headed for the back room where his apron and busing cart were waiting.
“Hold up there, Stevie, not so fast,” I said. I took him and his mother by their arms. “Work can wait for a minute. To celebrate you coming back, breakfast for you and your mother is on me!”
I led them toward a large corner booth at the rear of the room.
I could feel and hear the rest of the staff following behind as we marched through the dining room. Glancing over my shoulder, I saw booth after booth of grinning truckers empty and join the procession. We stopped in front of the big table. Its surface was covered with coffee cups, saucers and dinner plates, all sitting slightly crooked on dozens of folded paper napkins.
“First thing you have to do, Stevie, is clean up this mess,” I said. I tried to sound stern.
Stevie looked at me, and then at his mother, then pulled out one of the napkins. It had “Something for Stevie” printed on the outside. As he picked it up, two $10 bills fell onto the table.
Stevie stared at the money, then at all the napkins peeking from beneath the tableware, each with his name printed or scrawled on it. I turned to his mother. “There’s more than $10,000 in cash and checks on that table, all from truckers and trucking companies that heard about your problems. Happy Thanksgiving.”
Well, it got real noisy about that time, with everybody hollering and shouting, and there were a few tears, as well.
But you know what’s funny? While everybody else was busy shaking hands and hugging each other, Stevie, with a big, big smile on his face, was busy clearing all the cups and dishes from the table….
Best worker I ever hired.
Plant a seed and watch it grow.