Archive | December 22, 2011

2nd night of Hannukah

Last night I missed ritual to do some Zach sitting. As always I had a really good time. Zach and I have fun together. Last night we were poking fun at some of the stupid cartoons on. I swear “Grandma got run over by a reindeer” is about the stupidest thing I have ever seen. And it was made even more dumb by watching “Toy Story” right afterwards which is so good. Well drawn, well voice acted and just plain great. I’m amazed how well it holds up. It’s going to be a Disney?pixar classic for sure. I don’t think things are classics until they are at least 25 years old and still enjoyable.

I was honoured to be part of the family candlelighting. I have been part of a family Hannukah candlelighting since I was 8 and still living in the Valley before we moved to Glendale. Lovely.

Even if I wasn’t with the coven I did have a good time and I think Zach did too.

Got to love a kid who watches TV like I did, upside down from an easy chair. Drove my mom nuts for years doing that.
Had a completly different couple of stories last night that I did research on but they the one I woke up with and wrote? Heck no.

The Littlest Druid makes a friend

Once upon a time the Littlest Druid was down by the shore. The Druids had moved to their summer village by the water a few weeks before. Aisling had been sent to gather dulse again. It’s all she had done since they had moved and she was a little tired of it. What she was really tired of was not sleeping. Every time she wanted to sleep she felt like some one was watching her and it was diving her a little crazy and it was making her even clumsier that usual. So she was gathering the seaweed. She didn’t even like eating seaweed that much.

She just wished what ever was watching her would stop so she could sleep. Maybe if she took a nap? She rolled up in a skin she had found down by the shore to take a nap behind some rocks. She couldn’t believe her luck at finding it. It was a beautiful seal skin and some one had taken a lot of care to make it soft and cozy. She wondered who had been careless enough to leave it here in the rocks but since they had she was going to use it.

It wasn’t working. The sun was still too bright and the sand was itchy and the rocks were poking and she just wanted to sleep! So she gave up and folded the skin back up and went back to collecting the dulse.

She watched the gulls fly in and out and stalk the tiny crabs that lived by the shore and she picked up more dulse. She wandered up and down the rocky beach. She’d watched the druids take the coracles out to fish earlier in the morning and she saw them when they brought their catch home. She even saw the fish eagles out at sea hovering over the waves. The colony of seals up the beach had been making a lot of noise earlier but now they seemed to have quieted down to take their own naps in the sun.

Every once in awhile she sat by the waves and watched the sets come and in and tried to see beyond the ninth wave where there was supposed to be magic happening all the time according to the boys but she never saw anything magical. She saw some dolphins leaping in and out of the waves playing. She saw some flying fish way out on the water. She watched the sunlight dance and sparkle on the waves and all the time she felt eyes watching her. She felt like they were focused on her back and for some reason not very happy with her. Well, she thought, that wasn’t exactly a new feeling. It seemed someone was always unhappy with her for some thing. Although, that seemed to not be happening as much lately. Things seemed to have been getting a little better until now. No one had really yelled at her in weeks. Just maybe raised an eyebrow. She just wanted to sleep, really, really, and truly sleep. She wondered if the faeries were doing this to her. Why they would want to do that she didn’t know she didn’t think she’d done anything to them. She got into enough trouble with out making them mad.

She huddled by the shore as the sun was starting to go down. It was almost time to head back to the village for dinner. She wrapped the skin around her. She was the only one left on the beach. She turned to go…

“Give it back!” she heard.

Aisling whipped around and didn’t see anyone. It hadn’t been very loud maybe she was just imagining it. She looked up and down the shingle. Rocks and a few gulls and sandpipers and that was it. Who had spoken?

“Give it back! It’s mine and I need it?”

This time she turned and saw someone her size on the rocks.

“Who are you?” Aisling asked. “And what do you want?”

The person leapt off the rocks and ran toward her pointing at the skin around her shoulders.

“I hid it in the rocks and you took it! Give it back!” the person said.

“How do I know it’s yours and you aren’t just saying that?” Aisling replied.

He stood looking down and said quietly, “Because it fits me.” The boy was just her size and strangely silvery looking skin. He had huge kind brown eyes that at the moment were looking both uncertain and angry.

Aisling was confused. “Are you the one who has been watching me and what do you mean, it fits?”

“It’s my skin. This was my first time alone and I thought I had hidden it well and you took it.” The boy started to cry.

Aisling took off the skin in a hurry and handed it to the boy. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t know it was yours. It’s just warm and soft and very beautiful. What do you mean it’s your first time alone?”

The boy looked a bit guilty. “I’m not supposed to go ashore without my parents or the rest but I wanted to see what the land was like?”

“Do you mean you live in the ocean.!!!” Aisling goggled at the boy.

“Yes and it’s supposed to be a secret. You won’t tell will you?”

Aisling thought a bit. She thought it might cause a lot of trouble if she did tell and no one believed her so she said, “Help me pack up my basket and I won’t tell but you have to stop watching me!”

The boy looked at her. “Alright… You’re sure you won’t tell?”

“I promise on the hope of a silver bough.” Aisling swore. “if you promise to stop staring at me.

“Okay, what ever a silver bough is and I promise to stop staring at you unless you want it. I swear by the ninth wave.”

The two smiled at each other and packed up the baskets of dulse quickly.”

Aisling had been thinking. “Are you a ?”

“Yes,” the boy answered before she could finish.

“But I didn’t finish!!!”

“You were going to ask if I was a selkie, weren’t you? Yes, I am.”

“Okay, will you come and visit me again sometime? I get lonely gathering this stuff.”

“If you let me have some,” the boy said with a grin. He slipped the beautiful silver skin over his shoulders and changed into a small equally beautiful seal and lollopped into the waves. A flash of a flipper and he was gone.

For the first time in weeks no one was watching her and Aisling relaxed and sighed. She picked up the baskets and headed towards the village and wondered when she’d see her new friend again.


When I was in high school I got at least three huge doses of Christmas carols a year, if not more. Church and school counted for all of them. Church choir would be practicing and singing all of Advent and for Midnight Christmas Eve and at school I was in the choirs and we also sang them in Latin Club. In choir we practiced for the Home Tour and for our Christmas Concert. I seem to remember the Home Tours and the Latin carols better than any holiday concert.

One of our school’s main fund raisers every year was the Tour of Home and since we lived in the more affluent and older part of Glendale they always had huge old homes. They always picked one home for the choirs to sing carols all after noon at. I was the only guitar player that knew all the carols in the song book so I was the accompanist at least for my choir and some times for others. So I know the chords to most Christmas carols and all the alto harmonies. Christmas carols have some of the worst chord sets of any music with a lot of quick changes and I have to admit the ones in keys like E flat and B flat quietly got changed to other keys. The only ones who ever figured it out were the ones like my brother with perfect pitch. Sharp chords aren’t near the pain flats are to play.

The one and only time I ever ditched school was my senior year. The choir house was at one of our church choir mom’s house and I wanted to hang out early there because I loved Teby. So a friend and I started walking from school with my guitar and the caroling books 2 hours early. I am not a person who gets away wit breaking rules easily. About a third of the way to their house a car pulled up and wanted to give us a ride. It was the school principal. We got in his back seat and rode absolutely terrified all the way to the house that he was going to ask to see our off campus passes. He didn’t but I was never, ever tempted to skip school again. I even went to school on Senior Ditch Day. I just knew it wouldn’t end well.

The other caroling was in my Latin Club. A lot of the choir took Latin too which delighted our Latin teacher no end. She had a captive audience and she made us go caroling in the neighborhoods around school at night every year as part of the Christmas party. I can still sing most of the carols in Latin 30 years later. The easiest is Somnio Condidum Diem otherwise known as White Christmas. Adeste Fideles of course is O Come All Ye Faithful but there was also Sacra Nox, Sancta Nox – Silent Night and mt personal favourite in Latin, Salvete, Laete Comitas, God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman. I sang them enough that they are still drilled into my brain. That’s a bit scary.

I think the neighbors thought we were nuts because other than Adeste Fideles they couldn’t usually understand a word we sang.

The Hobbit

I’ve been trying to keep my hopes for the Hobbit from getting to high but the trailer did it for me. Once Thorin Oakenshield started to sing I was lost. I’m a sucker for Tolkien’s short poems and songs. And I’ve always loved low men’s singing voices when they aren’t bellowing. Added to that one of my favourite British actors Richard Armitage doing the singing. Oy!

So they do this to me when it doesn’t come out until December 14th Next year!!!!

Peter Jackson you had better not let me down!

It looks like it might end when Gollum and Bilbo meet which means the second movie with have Smaug and all the battles.

Can you name all the dwarves? And I don’t mean Sneezy, Sleepy Slutty and Doc.