This year we hosted a Jolabokaflod party, and it will be the genesis for future traditions!
We put together a brunch, invited friends, and gave them the rules:
- bring an anonymously wrapped book
- the book must be something you loved yourself, or that you feel more people need to know about
- We’ll all take a number
- Lowest number goes first and chooses a book
- Subsequent numbers can either ‘steal’ a previously unwrapped book, or choose a new one
- Books can only be swapped three times
It was fabulous!
My book was Alfred Bester’s “The Stars My Destination,” the one I ended up with was the novel “The Art of Racing in the Rain.” I made sure the kids got their own books: Madeleine for S. and the Nutshell Library for L.
Our menu was wonderful:
- Sliced ham
- Baked eggs
- Cinnamon rolls
- Baked oatmeal
- Fresh fruit
- Coffee (of course)
- Assorted juices (orange, grapefruit, and pomegranate-blueberry)
Not much booking to do, and loads of yummy — a perfect party combo. We spent a few hours talking, eating, and playing the game. Everyone went home to a book to enjoy one way or another. This is officially a keeper for the future.
Note: In the future, LJ recommended that we put a note on the book that describes it so as to help people make choices.
(I’ve never shared this story publicly.)
I’m spending Mabon literally in the middle of an orchard. I’m in Italy and all around me they are harvesting apples and pears (the peaches were last week, melons the week before). The house we are staying in is 100s of years old and has been in the same family all of that time. There is a pomegranate tree in the garden, and I’m delighted to see one ‘in the wild’ because it’s so entirely new for me. When we aren’t cooking for ourselves, my husband and I venture uot to one of many local places where we are often the only Americans, if not the only ones speaking something other than Italian. We do our best to expand our vocabulary and laugh when they switch to English because we just aren’t very good at it.
One of our ‘rules’ is that getting to a foreign country is so expensive that we want to stay there as long as possible. Another rule is that we each pack only a piece of luggage small enough to carry on, and a personal bag. Yet another rule is that we do our best to dress like locals. This means we have to get creative about what — and how — we pack.
Last night I had the pleasure of acting as a priestess-counselor for another priestess. (For the sake of narrative, I will call her M.) She was concerned that her speaking would involve the revelation of oath-bound information and that had prevented her from reaching out for quite some time. M, however, felt that there were current events occurring based on a former group she had been with, and that the oath-bound materials were a core of the issue. Not being able to speak to anyone from that group without risking (psychic) injury, she turned to me.
In the end, M. invoked the blessing of Isis to have compassion for her if she was going to transgress, and I took an oath not to reveal anything to another. . . and we talked.
And now I’m writing about it.
Seven ago today I began a process of deliberately poisoning my body; in the medical profession this is called chemotherapy.
It was the toughest thing I have ever done in my life. Partly because it wasn’t a one time even, but a whole series of sessions. And it got worse as time went on.
Last night’s class was on Deity, and I found myself talking about how Kali is the one Deity I have a hard time with. I spoke about how I’ve done dark god/dess work for years as part of the class cycle, and quite a bit of it touches on Her, but I still have trouble.
On Dec 23 I was crossing the street on my way home and was hit by a car.
Said like that: how terrifying and scary!
(I’m gritting through these last days of Mercury retrograde . . . looking forward to the release coming!)
In a conversation with someone the other day I was asked how I feel about AI. My first reaction was ‘Terminator!’, my second was from Jake Stonebender (I can’t remember the exact quote, but it was along the lines of “why do we view AI with such suspicion?” and then proceeded to present an AI of charm and joy and grace.)
But what it comes down to is this: Why do we need AI? what is the purpose?
Answer me that, and I’ll tell you how I feel.
Because let’s face it: doing science for the sake of science isn’t always a good idea. I mean, we could theoretically give cats opposable thumbs so they can open doors for themselves . . . but I’m convinced they would just light matches all of the time and therefore end up burning down the house.
What a tough year for the world.
I could write a maudlin post about the end of America as we know it or about the many deaths of celebrities we used as role models. It would be easy, and I suspect many better writers than I are doing so even now.
I choose to instead share my plans for the coming year. Particularly how I will be dealing with what I expect will be an overwhelming flood of *NEED* from so many causes and places I believe strongly in: ending racism, women’s equality, gay rights, protecting animals, caring for children, and supporting our civil liberties. Not to mention the periodic outbreaks of violence and natural disasters that will claim my time, energy, and money.