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Change of seasons
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.
First of March. First day of autumn. And with it...rain. I love rain and I love the introspective days that rain can bring, especially when I have time and space to enjoy them. I love being self-employed and therefore able to schedule my days with some sort of flexibility. So most days I am able to balance life and work and rainy day adventures. (Or sunny day adventures, should ever the sun decide to grace us with its presence again!)
I moved to NSW in 2001, to a job in horticulture. I was positioned in Young and I used to joke that I brought the drought with me. It was a tough 7 years in that district, especially for farmers, and I vowed that when the drought broke (after I had moved districts to Mudgee) that I would never again complain about rain. So a couple of years later, when I spent 5 months in the eastern US during a June where it rained 26 days of that month, I kept my promise and instead of complaining about the mould growing on shoes and walls and books and things, I bought a good rain coat and learned to talk with the ducks who had taken up residence in a pond which had formed next to our hut.
So what do we do with 'when it rains, it pours'? How do we bring into balance something which isn't? How do we go from drought to flood, with love grace and ease? By maintaining the inner balance we all have within us. By remembering that this too, shall pass. By remembering one extreme, while heavily in the other, and standing strong in the middle of it, if only in our imagination. By remembering we, like the land and nature, are resilient. And through chaos comes change. And through change comes growth. And through growth comes balance. Eventually and if we let it.
I love the power of story and story telling and writing is an integral part of my healing journey. More about me here.