We had quite the eventful Solstice evening. We were looking forward to going to a friend’s house for a Solstice celebration around a bonfire. The weather definitely did not cooperate, and we found ourselves with winds higher and more persistent than we saw during Hurricane Sandy. And buckets of rain came along with it. I had a harrowing drive to do an errand that could not be put off (read here: pick up a hand-made gift for my husband from friends who were about to get on the road out of town on Friday directly from school. There were moments on Route 1 when I really thought my little Subaru was going to get blown right off the road). When I got home, chores were about as much fun as I had imagined they would be, and I came in chilled to the bone and ready for something hot to drink. We began getting ready to go to the party and my husband was listening to the police scanner and saying that he didn’t think it would be a safe trip anywhere. The wind by this time was absolutely howling, our greenhouses were flapping in the wind, and if it hadn’t been so late in the day, I would have thought that the Mayan calendar might be right! Limbs were coming down all over the place and we heard that a transformer blew a few houses down from our son and his family, and that lines were dangling and sparking there. I was just about ready to call our friend and say that I was hesitant about coming out, and was on the phone with our friend Pam, when the lights went out. And that was it for Solstice eve!
We waited for awhile and eventually got the generator running, but sitting in the living room with the winds howling around and the trees going nuts in the gale, it was almost spooky-scary. And it’s funny that our our friends over at Henbogle had the same thought that I had: I immediately had visions of the series of books by Susan Cooper, The Dark is Rising in particular. It’s all about the darkness and the light, and the constant fight of good to hold the evil back. Solstice night is a main part of this first book and it is a very dramatic and very suspenseful read. The BBC made the book into a movie and they actually did quite a good job with it, particularly in catching the mood. It’s usually aired once or twice around Christmas, and if you catch it it’s worth the hour and a half. I get a shiver every time I think about the book and it really speaks to a more primal, and yes, pagan, side of humanity. The fear of the the darkness and the evil that is part of our physical world, is truly just as much a part of our spiritual and emotional world as is the tangible. And I guess the whole Mayan calendar thing coming so close on the heels of the Newtown massacre as well as the Solstice, just made the night that much more dramatic and more intense. John and I ended up turning off the generator and just hitting the sack before 9. The electricity came back on early the next morning and we learned then that there were multiple trees down on our street. I am glad that we sat tight in our little house.
Our lambing greenhouse didn’t fare as well as the house. We lost some of the ballast pipes on one side and it flipped over the ridgepost. At least the other side held. Tonight the moon is shining among some quickly moving clouds and all is quiet. I am guessing that the goodness and light has pushed back the darkness for another year. And so the seasons go. We now are looking forward (obsessively) to a few more moments of light each day. Happy belated Solstice!