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Thursday, December 23, 2010

A beginning.........an ending.

First the beginning.

There are several beginnings right now. The first day of winter. For  those of us who like to think we have "SAD" (Seasonal Affective Disorder), the first day of the days getting longer.  Or, as one of my sisters in law reminded me when she brought a celebration to our house, the event of the "winter solstice."

I'd heard of the winter solstice, knew little about it, but was intrigued by the notion of "a celebration of light" which she said it is. In a brief study of it, I found the name a bit confusing, "winter solstice", until I found it broken down into "sun" for sol and "stopped" for stice. Sure enough, we all know what few did in the dark ages, that our seasons are determined by the earth's tilt away from or toward the sun, rather than it's distance from the sun, so this stice is the stopping of the earth's tilt away from the sun (in the northern hemisphere) and the beginning of moving toward it. And stop it does. The days don't suddenly get longer, but for three or four days they stop and stay the same length until they get started down that path we love.

And what better way to celebrate this end of the dark nights than with light!!! with Christmas lights, for instance.  Here I am, a celebrator of the Winter Solstice, without even knowing it. BUT, in a bit of irony that we English speaking Christians understand, the event of the beginning of the time of the SUN coincides with the beginning of the time of the SON. Actually, the date of the beginning of the life of Jesus Christ (the son of God) has been determined to have been much closer to summer, and is thought to have been changed in the Dark Ages to its present date, probably by some frozen monk, looking for an excuse for a day off in December. But it is interesting that we now celebrate these two new lives at the same time.

So, thank you, Laura, for reminding me that the winter solstice is not some pagan holiday, but the beginning of more light in our days, which we all can celebrate. Especially Greg, who in a week or so will begin that long, slow process of taking down more lights than  any of us put up around our houses. Maybe next year some of us will present formidable challenges on the quantities of lights, but his position as "master of lights" on the east end of town is solid for another year.

And now the ending..........

I started "blogging" last spring when Kris and I first came to town. You all have been fun to write for and about, you opened the doors for me and told me secrets about this wonderful town which I have kept secret and will continue to do, but my health has lately told me it is time to let some one else tell the tales.

So, with MANY thanks for your many comments and great support, I bring this to an end.  I do hope that someone else can continue this because there are so many fascinating people, events, and stories here. And someone needs to tell about them. But thanks, Port Gamble, it was a lot of fun.

3 comments:

Shirley said...

I will miss your writings!!

Laura said...

Next I'll teach you about celebrating the Summer Solstice ;)

Paul said...

What a shame... I was so enjoying your musings and reflections... "all good things..." I guess:). Thanks for the wonderful dinner the other evening. A pleasure, as always, to spend time with your family.