Merry Spring. That’s what I say and celebrate instead of Easter. Now it’s just past Beltane, also known as May Day (especially if you’re about to crash in an airplane).
How do you bring the Pagan holidays into your own life? Do you light a candle at midnight and recite something from a book? Do you go outside and contemplate being skyclad if only it wasn’t so cold out? Do you put some dried herbs on your altar and make new notes in your Book of Shadows? Or do you make it personal?
I wasn’t in the mood to celebrate Beltane on May 1st. But today I was and so that’s what I did. Today, was the 333rd birthday of the company I work for. Yes, The Hudson’s Bay Company is 333 years old as of Friday, May 2nd, 2003. The company handed out watches to every employee and there were several kinds of cake, fresh fruit, coffee, muffins and other goodies. It was nice. Not because it was elaborate but because we were included.
So, today on the drive home I felt in the right mood for Beltane, the celebration of Spring. I took advantage of that. I created my own ritual on the spot, impulsively and used what was at hand where I was. Those are usually the best rituals, the ones that aren’t planned and mean so much more than something taken from a book or plan.
I had my new watch as the altar, set up on the dashboard of my car. It was dark outside by the time I finished work tonight, the darkness itself became an element, I opened the car windows to let it in. I had picked a bloom from the forced bulbs for sale in the garden centre and that was another element in the ritual. Plus it smelled great. That was all I needed. I waited, enjoying the quiet as everyone else left the parking lot. Two people stopped and asked if I was having car trouble. I just said I was taking my time, enjoying the quiet.
I didn’t have a lot of words. I talked about Spring, renewal, the garden, spring flowers, rain, all the things I like best about this time of year. Mostly I just enjoyed the quiet, darkness of the night and the smell of the hyacinthe bloom in my car.
Originally posted to ‘BackWash: Where the Wild Things Are’ newsletter, May, 3, 2003.