Monday, 21 June 2021

Happy Summer Solstice

 Today marks our longest day,  & is an important part of the ritual of time. The sun will rise at 4.52am  and set at 9.26pm, giving us 16 hours & 38 minutes of sunlight / daylight.  

The Solstice marks the beginning of the astronomical summer. The word ‘solstice’ comes from the latin word meaning ‘sun standing still’ which is a good description of how the day will seem to hang around. 

Pagans mark this day, often at Stonehenge because they believe mid summer has special significance.  

People used to light fires to keep the dark & bad spirits away.

Some of the folklore sayings associated with mid summer

One swallow never made a summer

When the summer birds take flight, there goes the summer with them

Welcome summer, the long days & short nights are very welcome after a long winter. 

Some previous blogs on this day:

summer solstice 2015

I will light candles tonight for my light, unfortunately there is no sun today which would have given us brightness. 

However, this weekend we have been out taking photos of very summery scenes in Shropshire - the poppy & daisies in the fields 

Beautiful, lush green fields amongst green trees 

Thank you for your time; each & every visit & comment is much appreciated, be safe all  💖

Dee ~💕~

Monday, 14 June 2021

Lockdown day 448 & still counting ...

It is hard to believe that after 448 days, we are still in restrictions of sorts. 

Today was a palatable hope that things would open up as planned on 21st June but alas, after we watched the G7 leaders socialising on the Cornish beach, cheek by jowl, further extensions were announced this evening -- thanks for nothing to the Delta / India variant.

I have chartered the lockdowns since the beginning from my own view: 

March 2020 - Living with social distancing & uncertainty ...

April 2020 - We are all in the same storm, not the same boat ....

June 2020 - Lockdown day 75

1 July 2020 - The milestone 100 days of lockdown in the UK

October 2020 - 200 days of lockdown ...

18 November 2020 - 240 days of lockdown & thinking festively ...

31 December 2020 - Create the life you want to live in 2021

31 January 2021 - In the end, we’ll all become stories ...

22 March 2021 - Lockdown day 365 - My year in review ...

Lockdown day 448 is yet another delay on this Covid survival expedition where life seems to be in suspension still, a sort of Alice through the looking glass where things are not as they seem. 

My modest work as an Elective Home Education Tutor came to a grinding  halt last March because I could not work in homes & across several different places so for the first time in my life I was without a purpose or job. I had worked hard over 18 years to work with those who opt out of mainstream education & my contribution was important & fulfilling - that stopped suddenly & when I could eventually restart with a tiny cluster in September, it was a relief to have that interaction again, to have a purpose, to be valued for my profession & training, to have an identity outside the home. 

That stopped again in January & with so many having had a long lay off, there was a great reluctance to re engage again - the momentum was lost. 

A new acronym came about for people like me - F I R E - Forced in to Early Retirement 

It might be an interesting prospect but my state pension is still a way off & the loss of the familiar routine is unsettling.  We have to learn to accept the reality of the world we are presented with but our own sense of worth is connected to the contribution we make in society, to the associations we have with our worth. The strides of the equalities have been lost as many women have again picked up the responsibilities of the home - falling back to  cooking, cleaning, planning meals,  the stereotypical roles reinforced again, the frustrations of the expected roles ...

The support systems have loosened too, the cosy shopping breakfasts with girlie friends or the meals shared with friends at home have not been there; not all friendships have survived & with it those support systems are gone. 

Tonights announcement brought a feeling of pandemic fatigue, a weariness of life that someone else has control over.  Many of us have done all that the last 448 days has asked, yet there is no end. We have had our 2 vaccinations, have kept socially distanced, worn our masks & done our bit. 

I have once again postponed my long trip to Transylvania for the third time, my Holocaust trip will probably be the same & be moved to 2022. 

The most important trip that is on perpetual hold is the one to South Africa to reunite my Father’s ashes with my Mothers & brothers. When that will be is out of my control but it is not far from my mind at all. Dad was a Covid victim & Covid seems to be reluctant to release its hold on our lives. 

The weariness of another Covid delay just gnaws at one, no clear answers to its origins or why it has claimed to many - it seems as if all the collateral damage wrought by it is incidental. 

I try to focus on the positives - of having a healthy lockdown grandson & his parents are doing well, of a grown up younger daughter choosing to spend the last 6 months of lockdown with us - that was very special as adult children returning are a blessing. 

I wonder what Lockdown number I will post next? Hopefully not another Advent countdown ... 

How is this new normal treating you? What is it like where you are? 

Stay well, seek out the things that bring peace to your mind, be blessed ... 

Thank you for your time; each & every visit & comment is much appreciated, be safe all  💖

Dee ~💕~

(extended lockdown deserves no images ... sorry)