Princess Charlotte And The Smelly Red Not-A-Dog

23714903_157555868323162_1125057208_o
A picture of a picture…foxes are reluctant to pose… 

It was a crisp, early Autumn morning, the sort that I can tolerate without too much complaining since the sun was already shining comfortably, the sky was bright blue and the fallen leaves from the apple tree were crunchy underfoot rather than soggy.

Even though I no longer smoke, I still like to take an early morning saunter around the garden to check on the progress of the various plants and restrain myself from pulling the occasional one up to see if it’s growing.

Generally, one or more of the cats accompanies me on these little excursions and on this particular morning, Charlie chose to bless me with her presence. We stopped to comment on the progress of the tissue plant – I think it’s actually called a Rose of Sharon, don’t know who she is… but the flowers are a beautiful shade of pink and set against the silvery green leaves look like crumpled balls of delicate tissue.

23698392_157556074989808_449385320_o (1)
It’s not Sharon’s… it’s mine… 

We turned the corner into the main body of the garden and Charlie instantly stiffened in alarm and went tinsel-tailed… an intruder! But… but… what an intruder! I am aware that our garden is a cut-through for foxes, right at the very bottom where the pond is, and I think they like to stop by for a drink of water. We leave shallow dishes out for the cats and hedgehogs, but today’s visitor had been caught red-pawed…

He was only a young fox, as he didn’t quite have the bulk and splendour of some of our other visitors, and he seemed as surprised to see us as we were to see him. He froze, one slender paw raised, Charlie, unconsciously mirroring the pose, then as the breeze changed direction she must have smelt him… Her face was a picture. She pulled her lips back in the “Oh-my-God” face – more correctly known as the Flehmen reaction and looked at me as if to say:

I have never smelled a dog so disgusting it can’t even be a dog! How can he smell that bad and still be alive?!?”

The fox, perhaps sensing Charlie’s distaste at his overwhelming body odour slowly lowered his paw to the ground and began moving stealthily towards the gap in the hedge. He cast a shame-faced look at Charlie –

I know someone as beautiful as you would never give me a chance…”

And made a break for the gap. The wrong gap. He got stuck. Just his furry bum and brush sticking out of the hedge.

This impudence was too much for Charlie to bear and she shot forwards to deliver a series of well-placed slaps to the poor fox’s bristly behind.

A frantic rustling from the depths of the hedge – then seconds later I was relieved to see the fox hot-footing it across the park… Lucky the colour of his fur hid his blushes…

Charlie looked up at me:

Honestly! Give them an inch and they take a mile…” and walked off to clean her contaminated paw.

23715030_157556384989777_209238025_o
“How very dare he!!”

Advertisements

Hope

23635505_157138631698219_480874407_n
Thank you Alex for the use of your lovely photo

It was cold. So very cold. The bitter, biting dry cold where the sky was icy bright blue and the very air sang and sparkled with ice crystals.

The little one waited, huddled in the scant shelter of a dark hedge.

The cold was intense, so cold it made your teeth ache and your bones snap. And still the little one waited.

Night came. Someone was near, watching and sad, filled with worry for the little one who waited but whose spark was now very frail. Hope was nearly gone, abandoned before Life was even really started.

The Watcher could bear it no more and stepped down, down from the dark, down in the singing cold as the stars spun in their icy waltz, down in the bleak night to appear before the little one.

She scooped her up, gently, feeling the little life left in its delicate shell and cupped in her hands, and breathed warmth and life into the little one.

Not very far away, a woman lay, sleepless in the dark and the cold, sleepless in the night while tears froze on her cheeks, warm in her bed but cold in her life. Suddenly she thrust back her duvet and thought she would look out into the calm dark, see if it would ease her pain.

She slipped on her dressing gown and went downstairs to open her door into the night, and there on the step lay a little scrap, a tiny thing.

The kitten looked up at the woman and meowed, faintly, hopefully. She bent down to pick her up, and as the little one purred so the frost in her heart began to thaw.

The Watcher returned to her place and told Him what she had done. He smiled and was pleased for although some may be lost there is always Hope.

Rhodonite And Wrongdoing…

23514712_154147461997336_1605644717_o

This wonderfully gentle pink and black crystal also happens to be one of the alternative birthstones for July, and perhaps one that I should spend more time with as it encourages the growth of love without judgement and teaches you emotional balance.

23484678_154147668663982_1603505216_o

Rhodonite can also help to soothe emotional shock and calm panic, clearing the heart chakra and giving it positive stimulation. It is supportive and kind, healing wounds from past emotional abuse and helping to dissolve lingering resentment. Being pink, it is linked to the heart chakra and has a strong connection with forgiveness.

23514681_154147578663991_337332040_o

It encourages emotional clarity easing forgiveness if you feel you have been wronged and showing that although you may never forget, for the sake of your own emotional health you must forgive and move on… Think of Rhodonite as the elasticated bandage of the crystal world, supporting you, whilst allowing you to heal.

It is a sad fact of Life that while there are people, there will be wrongdoing, misdeeds and downright badness. I’m no angel – far from it, as I would be the first to admit I can be hideously bad tempered, highly strung and I get VERY overwrought, but I do my best to avoid wrongdoing. Karma has a way of paying you back…

23484517_154147385330677_773273838_o
Charlie hiding under the bed for a spot of over-grooming – definitely wrongdoing!!

I snapped at my mother the other evening and we didn’t part on the best of terms. I stomped off to the bus stop, fussing and fuming with rage. Half an hour later, I was still waiting for the bus… I was freezing, it was raining, and I used the time constructively to reflect upon my needless wrongdoing and appreciating the irony of my situation as my feet squelched and nose dripped…

A humorous incident to illustrate my point, but sometimes, hard though it is, you have to forgive others and move on for your own sake.

23516474_154147895330626_1888685915_o
In comparison, a Siamese Sparkle Fur, looking positively angelic…!

Sorry… Really?

23514557_154054915339924_927775006_o.jpg
Flowers are always good…

This has to be one of the most misused words in the English language, even being used as shorthand for “I beg your pardon”…as in “I didn’t hear what you said.” If you bump into someone accidentally, then it’s fine to say “Sorry!” and dart off…

I narrowly missed smacking an innocent young man right in the chops the other day. I was walking along, it was a busy afternoon, and I was replaying a particularly irritating conversation in my head – as you do – and when a suitably scathing reply popped into my head I waved my arms in agitation, nearly backhanding this bloke who was walking (perhaps a little too close) beside me.

I am a bit of an arm waver when I talk, and sometimes my over-enthusiastic gestures can be hazardous as I search for the words to physically grab them out of the air. I genuinely meant “Sorry!” as I saw the look of fright on his face as he ducked to avoid being assaulted by this obviously batty middle-aged woman…

But what has happened to the honesty of words… I sometimes feel I should carry placards with emojis on instead of wasting my word budget for the day…. Although I would probably end up beating some poor unfortunate about the head with them… or smashing unwary pigeons out of the air…

However, when I say “sorry” I really, truly mean it, with sincerity and meaning. I have had some real family issues centring around my older son that have left me feeling somewhat trampled, to be honest. He’s been like this for about five or six years now – he has issues that we have tried to help with – but I don’t want to turn this into a Pity Poor Me post.

Suffice it to say, there is fault on both sides, but he seems to think that he can say “Sorry” with no honesty and that the mere saying of the word makes everything all right and everything better. Don’t just SAY “Sorry” BE “Sorry.”

While I’m on the subject…in addition to this the Universe blessed me with a virus that has left me feeling %$*t …so to all my friends and readers I must truly apologise if I haven’t been around to comment, or I have been slow in answering. I will get there and I appreciate each and every one of you who has taken the time to stop for a read, a like or a comment.

Bear with me… xx

23482914_154055142006568_500950205_o
 Ting, with my “Sorry Siamese” card, beautifully created by Lady Joyful 

Time… please!

23484903_153571392054943_46039547_o
A wonderful agate slice…made into a clock but missing a few hours!

I wonder who originally thought that dividing a day into segments would be a good idea… chaining future generations to a regimented system that would rule our lives from the minute we are born to the day we die – see!

We complain about time – I know I do – like last week I was so busy I literally ran out of hours in the day. The clocks going back always tends to throw my biorhythms out and it takes me about a month to adjust to that.

I tend to measure time in phrases like “this time next week” or “this time last year I was doing…” It might look like I’m wishing my life away, but I suppose I am trying to grasp something that is after all, intangible and measure it in a personal way that gives the passage of time a little more meaning to me. For example – this time next week I’ll see Alex again… to pick up his laundry!

I have found that I do miss him terribly, but thinking of it like this makes the passage of time a little easier to digest… when I think about it further, this time next year he will have just started his second year!

I saw the city decorations for Christmas the other day and had a few tiny panics, thinking “HOW can it be that time of year already when it seemed like summer only a week ago!” I don’t know whether it’s true that the years go quicker as you get older, but I do know it seems harder to account for them… and yet… and yet…dial it back the other way…

23469416_153111448767604_370891876_o
My little princess proving she can still be cute and kittenish!

A hundred years ago, my Granddad was born. I knew him – obviously – as an older man, but still, that relationship was in my lifetime. A hundred years before that – 1817 – my grandmother’s family left Wales for Staffordshire… 1717 George I was on the throne and my mother’s great-great-great grandparents met and married in County Durham…(I found the family tree..) 1617 – James I was on the throne after Elizabeth died… her father being Henry VIII and beyond him we’re into mediaeval times…

All these little hooks, little anchors in time serve to mark Mankind’s place on this Earth, when really, we haven’t been here that long. It amazes me that something fossilised, thousands of years old, that was on the Earth at the same time as dinosaurs, can cost a few pounds to buy, in comparison with, say, a coin from the 1700’s can cost thousands if in mint condition.

Pre-history, human pre-history, fascinates me too… so many thousands of years behind us… do we have as many in front?

Must dash – but I think I shall return to this subject in the future…when I have a little more time!

23432942_153101155435300_1695497531_o
This old wall interests me.. weather beaten and worn…

Shadows

23222922_149912202420862_240748244_o
My attention was caught by the wonderful latticework effect of this cafe chair at Nottingham Castle

Chiaroscuro”… fabulous word, Italian in origin, I believe, and generally used to mean how the contrast between light and shadow is portrayed, like in drawing, for example. Since buying my new phone (and Alex going to University…) I am attempting to take my own photos for the blog, and I am always fascinated how the effect of shadows influences a picture.

22323942_135010533911029_1971301412_o
This photo is actually the shadow of a little gargoyle ornament that I have – I wanted the hint of uncertainty that the shadow, rather than the ornament, seemed to illustrate.

I like the symbolism too, since we live our lives in both light and shadow, some of us perhaps spending more time than we should in the shade, although I feel that in order to understand and appreciate the Light we must also know and understand shadow.

23191622_149911932420889_1550796750_o
Alex took this picture for a post I wrote last year, the horse symbolising beautifully how mine and my sister’s childhood receded into shadowy memory…

Shadows seem to be a recurring theme for me, at various points throughout my life…my mother fostered a German Shepherd called Shadow, Alex used to like a song called “Where Is Shadow?” when he was little and Lily did a little modelling work for the lovely Marje, (imagine a link to mjmallon.com I tried to do this post last night and when I wanted to add the link, somehow I binned the lot…) posing as “Shadow” from her book, “The Curse Of Time” – please go and visit, she’d love to see you!

23191981_149912539087495_1205225949_o
I like the hint of colour in this picture – it’s a vintage perfume bottle, in the shape of a German Shepherd, that belongs to my mother.

Also, in various pagan and Wiccan groups, there is a tradition of keeping your own Book Of Shadows, basically a journal where you can write down all your own spiritual experiences, spells, charms, remedies and events that have had an effect on you.

23158300_149912335754182_1660801009_o
I liked the bold, blocky shadow that this chunk of agate casts… those dark stripes are my window blinds..not bars on the window…honest…

I had my very first psychic reading at the Well Being event I attended a couple of weeks ago, which included a Tarot reading. Guess what card was drawn… the Book Of Shadows… In essence, I still have pages in my book to fill, I have learned a lot recently, after a period of stagnation and although these lessons haven’t always been particularly pleasant, I need to learn, process this information in order to forgive and move on.

23224731_149979442414138_1058326595_o
Got to get a cat in somewhere…cute kitty shadow…

Easier said than done, sometimes, really… but I suppose ultimately, we all want to leave the shadows behind us and live in the Light. We learn from the contrasts.

Copper And Corpses…

22396778_136492613762821_1293835611_o

Given up by Mother Earth and lovingly shaped by Tethys, these nuggets of sea tumbled Copper are warm to the touch and blessed with various metaphysical benefits. Wearing Copper bracelets is well-known to be helpful in reducing the pain of arthritis and rheumatism.

It is connected to the sacral chakra and will help the body to heal and regenerate, whilst also stimulating your primal creative energy. Copper was present when the world was born – thus it will help you give birth to your own dreams and bring them into being. With this in mind, it is an excellent focus foe meditation, as it will take you back, deep within your own psyche to find and develop answers for your own spiritual growth.

22429431_136492780429471_1308739821_o
Copper pictures courtesy of Lizian – thank you! x

As already mentioned, Copper is anti-inflammatory and soothing for aching muscles and it can also help to release creative frustration and emotional tension… Corpses by their very nature induce emotion… as mother to the Furry Four I am regularly presented with a variety of little corpses, from moths to birds, mainly through the generosity of Lily.

Ting caught a fly once and Tooty attempted to murder a pigeon, but my little princess Charlie has never caught and killed a thing… However, I accept my role as undertaker and dispose of these little ones with care, sending them on their way with love and a prayer. I have only ever seen one dead human body, my partner’s father, and I was struck by the sense of difference, of something no longer needed and left behind like an old coat…

I remember when I was a little girl and my beloved Snoopy made his final journey, my father buried him under the apple tree in our garden. A couple of years later, when I was still quite young, I was distraught to find that my mother’s dogs had exhumed my cat. Crying, I ran indoors screaming:

Mummy! Mummy! The dogs have dug Snoopy up and they’re playing with him in the garden!”

I was devastated – my mother laughed… I can only ascribe this to her somewhat morbid sense of humour and the way I said it…

22833324_145499936195422_724378364_o (1)
“Hey! I’m just sleeping!!”

My most recent encounter with a corpse came courtesy of Erin, who is normally the most ladylike and refined of dogs, with manners as impeccable as her pedigree. Whilst out walking the other day, she discovered a rotting frog corpse… and rolled in it. Thoroughly. I was too late too stop her. She stunk. Thoroughly.

Walking back, tiny bones smooshed into her fur and entrails hanging off her head, I lectured her:

That is absolutely disgusting. What is so attractive about rancid amphibian? Chanel No.5 I could understand…”

As we entered my mother’s house she yelled:

Oh my GOD! She stinks! What have you been DOING??”

I laughed….

22404248_136488480429901_1540383733_o
Wonderfully atmospheric photo taken by Alex…