Posts

The Rhythms of my Year

I am very fortunate that my location and lifestyle make it easy to notice and appreciate the changing seasons.  At this time of year, for example, there is the steady increase in levels of light as I leave and return home;  the unfurling leaves on the goat willow tree outside my bathroom window;  the crocuses and daffodils, planted by my children when they were small at the edge of the lawn, which have multiplied and spread, and raise their brave yellow flags every spring (this year, through the snow);  the quality of the dawn light, which now enters my bedroom not only earlier, but at a sharper angle;  the lambing and calving on neighbouring farms;  and all the other reminders that the winter is over, and my world is renewing its association with the light.  Usually, changing temperatures are part of this – last year, we spent most of Easter weekend relaxing in the garden in shirtsleeves – but it snowed again yesterday, and the chill winds and frosty mornings remind us that winter can be tenacious, too!
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Following the sun, or following the moon?

If you’ve been following my posts, you’ll know that I’m fascinated by the wide variety of cultures that have based some or all of their time measurements on the moon.  Whilst some societies have imported these concepts from elsewhere (as the Romans probably based their first system on one or other of the earlier Greek calendars, who in turn were influenced by the Babylonians, for example), in many cases it appears to have been developed locally and independently.
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