Thursday, August 1st, is a day of celebration for many. It marks the time of Lammas and Lughnasadh, the celebration of the early harvest, and the Celtic god, Lugh (respectively). To the pagans among us, Lammas is the first of three yearly harvest festivals. The second celebration falls on Mabon (September 22nd), also known as the Autumnal Equinox. The third falls on Samhain (pronounced sow-wen), which is known most commonly by the moniker of Halloween (October 31st).
("The Harvesters"; Artist: Pieter Bruegel, c. 1565)
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Last night was July's Full Moon. A Super Moon in the sign of Aquarius. It was really beautiful. Big, and bright white. While the Moon sits in Aquarius, the Sun moves into the sign of Leo. Fitting since my birthday is on the 27th, and I am a Leo. The Sun and the Moon bring to the fore the qualities of the heart and mind respectively. The energies for this moon lean towards the unconventional. Hidden emotional issues are usually pushed to the surface during a Full Moon, which makes the time ripe for facing long hidden issues, and healing as a result. Aquarius brings a sense of freedom to openly acknowledge and analyze long shelved wishes and desires. It's a good time to focus on the future. Feelings and issues that have long been a part of the subconscious can come into play, and by using the wealth of energies present during this moon you can take full advantage of Aquarius' objectivity, and Leo's warmth. Not only a beautiful moon, but a constructive one.
When I ventured over to the marsh to see what I might be able to capture in terms of Moon shots, I was struck by the color blue. Kind of a pale cerulean blue that was matched in the sky and the glassy surface of the marsh waters. The form of the trees and other fauna stood in stark contrast like meticulously sculpted silhouette cuttings. Seemingly one dimensional shapes framed against the blue and green expanse stretching into the distance. Quite stunning.
I wasn't sure exactly where the moon was set to rise. I was on a bit of a moon hunt, and searched the far horizon for any signs of Luna's light. I could make out her location, but there were tendrils of cloud obscuring most of her form. We have had overcast weather for weeks now (in varying degrees), and seeing the wispy cloud cover made me feel crestfallen. It looked like she might very well not make an appearance in all her glory this time. However, I wasn't about to give up and go home.
Being dive-bombed by mosquitoes wasn't very pleasant, but I decided to tough it out and see if Luna might make at least a brief appearance. My efforts would soon be rewarded. Continuing to climb above the horizon, she grew brighter and started to come out of obscurity. A few more minutes and she was completely visible.
The higher she climbed in the sky, the fewer clouds there were. (At least for the time being...the radar on the Weatherscan channel showed an angry band of storm clouds headed our way...at the very least the sky would be filled with cloud cover, and that meant 'good night, moon'). In an effort to get a clear view, I shouldered my camera tripod and quickly walked to the pond. The closer I got, the louder the chorus of pond frogs got. It was worth the walk.
I always prefer clouds in some form when photographing the moon. They make a shot more interesting. They also add to the abstract quality my night time shots have with this camera. My images never capture exactly what I see with my naked eye, but I am always satisfied with my photos.
The two images here (above and below) are my favorites. Very abstract and ethereal. They resemble paintings more than photographs. Artistic shots of my birthday moon. Well, a few days short of my birthday, but close enough.
Finally. A relatively cool evening. After a torrential downpour that began just after dusk started to settle in, the clouds have thinned, and a soft breeze blows lazily over the marsh. After covering an extra shift, and working a couple of longer ones over the last week, I am finally able to relax. To take a proverbial load off. Before settling in here at my computer and blowing some dust off my keyboard, I took a short respite in the form of an early night time stroll. It's a Full Moon in the fixed sign of Aquarius tonight. The 'water bearer'. I've always thought it interesting that Aquarius is an 'air' sign...one would think the water bearer would be a 'water' sign. Anyway, this moon is another Super Moon. Big, white, and bright, it's hanging in the sky like a giant Fresnel illuminating the marsh. Standing by the expanse with mosquitoes buzzing by my ears, the tide was high and rippled in the moonlight. Across the marsh of summer green grasses and reflective water, I could see a stream of flickering headlamps coming from Tybee Island on what I have always referred to as the land bridge. It was beautiful and peaceful. I needed a nice cool evening walk, and I'm happy to say that's what I got.
Heat. Humidity. A typical summer on the Georgia coast. Reporters on the various news telecasts have been talking about the heatwave we are experiencing all over the US. Oh what misery. Seems like your typical mid-summer weather to me. Alert the presses! It's hot during the summer!
I, myself, am not a fan of summer. First of all...well...it's hot, and the humidity makes spending time outdoors almost unbearable. Within a few minutes the hot and humid air has me running with sweat. We have had a considerable amount of rain this year, which is a nice change from the last couple of years. We have a surplus...they said 10 inches above the average for this time. The rain can help cool things down some, but not always. Today it helped. It felt so good to come back inside without having my clothes sweat soaked, and clinging to me. For that short walk I could feel the approach of a friend I have missed for months now. My friend Autumn.
I have decided that I am going to make Autumn come early this year. The weather and the actual seasonal shift may not help me out, but I have decided to go ahead and create the autumnal vibe in my abode. I've started burning my pine and pumpkin spice scented candles, both of which make me think of Fall. I am also going to transition certain decor elements early. Break out the earthy colors. Change out my brightly colored flowers of spring and summer with the oranges, browns, and deep greens prevalent after Mabon/the Fall Equinox. I don't think I will go so far as to break out some of my more subtle Samhain/Halloween decorations, but they will most likely come out earlier this year (probably September...All Hallow's is my favorite holiday).
Some of my Full Moon photos from tonight will show up in a different post soon. The pictures in this post are ones I took a few days ago. I finally had some time to get them together, so...better late than never. They were taken on a very hot and humid day. Taken during the summer, but the distant vibe of Autumn is there.
Well...I can feel it, anyway...
Above is the pond here at the condos. I have posted a few pictures of it here and there. However, I haven't posted a picture of the sign posted next to it. That's it below. Hmm..."No Swimming"..."No Wading"...There aren't any alligators in it?...Alligators not allowed? Not quite sure what the message is...*snerk*.