In preparing for the season of Christmas, I follow the age old tradition of having a good old clear out and tidy-up…much to the discerning eyes and critical comments of family and friends…”but why are you changing the furniture around?” “…re-painting that room…” etc., Well, don’t ask me…it’s just what I have always done!
I am driven with the desire to instill a sense of order upon Bealtaine Cottage as the midwinter festivities approach.
There is a history to this festival that precedes the usual image we hold as the collective ideal…Christmas.
The winter solstice was immensely important.
This was because communities were not certain of living through the winter, and had to be prepared during the previous nine months.
Food and wine was ready to eat and drink as fruit fermented and animals were slaughtered as feed stocks dwindled.
Hyacinths continue to push their way up through the soil and moss in a pot, placed on a window-sill in the cottage. It’s good to have a reminder of what’s to come…
So today has been a day of tidying and ordering…cleaning the henhouse, sorting wool, cleaning out one cupboard, (well, that’s a start!) and listening to the gentle music of “Altan,” as I go…