Today is the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year. We are right, slap, bang in the middle of winter. Living with an archaeologist I have become more aware of the significance of this time. In Ireland we have the Neolithic site Newgrange (fascinating place to visit), a place where Andrew took me in our courting years to experience (albeit through the medium of electric lighting) how this was a place devoted to the celebration of the Winter Solistice. I urge you to follow the links and learn more about this place.
Becoming more connected with the earth, the seasons and the weather, I have noticed the vital importance of these celebrations. Many years ago I would not be sitting here with electric lighting, warm oil-fired radiators in a very soft sofa with a laptop! So I think of why and if these days are important to us now. I think they are. We still feel the terrible pull of winter's grasp, dragging us into the depths of coldness, bad weather and darkness; our gardens and allotments can't be tended to as much, most wonderful vegetables will not grow in these conditions and we rarely get the Vitimain D we require from the sun.
So, no I didn't get up before dawn to witness the solistice sun rise and I was in the shower over the sun set but I have had my own little celebration of this, the shortest day of the year ~ I'm in the middle of gingerbreadmen making. Tomorrow, my friends, the days offically start to get longer, spring is on her way and with that in mind I am happier, more ready to conquer the Christmas period and all its madness, ready to plan ahead and think of the rebirth of my allotment and the growing of seeds.
This could be a day of real depression and oppression - there has hardly been any day light. But instead it heralds the start of a new dawn. That's worth celebrating! x