erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
Last night I finally finished up putting together the table and chairs. It took me until almost 9am this morning. I'm going to try to get some sleep much much earlier tonight because I have group tomorrow at the VA and don't want to miss it. It's our chaplaincy intern's last group before she leaves.

Today I also reformatted the hard drive on the MacBook and will be seeing what I can get for it from the Mac recycle. They'll be shipping me a box to send it off to them in.

The other thing I did today (finished just a little while ago) was writing up a post about Heapstown Cairn, Airmed, and the ritual we did there. It's got a few photos in it, though they're fairly small format for the most part. I'll be posting a couple of photos of it here in a day or so.

[livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor came by for a few to take some measurements of the old table to see if it will fit in her new place. She'll check her space and let me know. If she doesn't want it, I'll probably get rid of the chairs and put the table on craigslist or something, given that it's reasonably sturdy and aside from some damage to the finish, it's not in bad shape. It's perfectly useable still. Right at the moment, though, it's taking up a huge amount of space in my living room and I need to clear it out so I can get other things done.

At the moment, I've got a lamb and barley soup cooking on the stove. Gotta wait for that to finish up before I can go to bed.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
Just sent this off to PCon for their consideration:

Irish Healing Deities: Beyond Brigid

Ask about Irish healing deities and the first name mentioned is likely to be Brigid, yet there are many others in the pantheon. From Dian Cécht and his family to the invocation of Goibhniu in healing charms to healing water in the hands of Fionn Mac Cumhaill, explore some of these other deities and their stories. Holy wells, healing herbs, and magical metal limbs are only a few of the themes we'll explore.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Ganesha)
Hung out with [livejournal.com profile] alfrecht today and talked with him about possible PCon proposals. I've decided that one of them will be a session on Airmed, Miach, and Dian Cécht, regarding Irish healing deities beyond Brigid, but also dealing with their whole story and why I think most folks misinterpret Dian Cécht's motivations. Anyway, I need to come up with a halfway decent blurb for it.

I've been too aching and brain-dead today to do much of anything requiring actual focus, but I did speak to my neighbor who is on the condo board about the whole few months out of the country and temporarily renting out my condo thing. She said a few months would be more like a house-sitting situation and shouldn't be a problem with the board at all. It's not like I'm wanting to permanently rent the place out. I told her if I were going to do that, I'd be trying to sell the place, so no worries there. That said, now I need to find a "short term" (3 or 4 month) renter for next fall/winter. [livejournal.com profile] alfrecht had a couple of interesting ideas on that might or might not work out, but I've given him leave to check into the possibilities. I'm also looking at a house exchange website, though that would require somewhat more flexibility than I might be comfortable with. I'm just not sure. Anyway, that's one large potential obstacle to my possible Venice plans out of the way.

I ran the outline of the EBC presentation past [livejournal.com profile] alfrecht and he said it looked good, then suggested one possible addition to the outline, so I had him make a note of it. Always good to have reasonably complete coverage.

Email arrived today from Hiraeth Press with some possible cover art bases and I commented on the ones I liked best and sent the note back. I told Jason I'd try to have the edited manuscript back to him by Monday, considering how crappy I was feeling today. He's said no rush, but I'd like to get it out of the way as soon as I can so I can focus on the EBC presentation without distraction. The PCon proposals are also due the same weekend as the EBC is occurring.

As usual, I'm asking for suggestions -- what would you folks like to see from me at next year's PCon? I'm willing to entertain proposals from you all, as you often have some pretty good suggestions. When my own brain is not functioning at its best, I am especially grateful for your thoughts.

And, finally, seven photos from my travels behind the cut )
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
We went out to Heapstown Cairn today to do the Airmed ritual. The site is near houses, but very secluded from view by a ring of trees and a thick shrubbery of rhododendrons. We found a little clearing on the back side of the cairn where we did our ritual, and I dedicated my moss agate ogam feda as I had wished.

Later that afternoon, most of us climbed Knocknarea and did a ritual up at Maeve's Cairn there at the top. Our bus driver asked if we'd take a stone up for him to leave at her cairn, with his regards, which I did very happily. He's apparently been quite enjoying our company and has been hanging out with us and sharing dinner with us. While we were off at Heapstown, he got invited in by one of the local ladies for a cuppa tea and a scone, and asked her about the local folklore, as he likes to be able to share that kind of thing with his passengers if they are interested. Heapstown Cairn is apparently a central cairn with at least three, possibly more, other smaller satellite cairns around it, according to the woman he talked to. He said that the locals claim there is an actual entrance into the cairn, and that they tell their kids not to go into it or they will drown in the well that's hidden beneath, which confirms the local folklore about the Well of Sláine being hidden beneath it.

We were finally able to find Michael Quirke today in his shop, just after we got into Sligo from Knocknarea. He was charming and did small wood engravings for those of us who were there. I commissioned a Suibhne Geilt from him, not quite certain how I was going to pick it up (it's supposed to be ready on Tuesday), but the very kind folks here at the B&B offered to pick it up for me. I'm really excited. He's going to do a plaque with a narrative sort of illustration on it rather than a sculpture in the round, and I think that will be amazing for the incubation chamber when I get home. I'll have to ship it from here before I head over to the Isle of Man (or ship it from Mann when I get there if I haven't the time beforehand). I certainly can't carry it on the plane from Manchester with me unless I dump a bunch of stuff, because it will weigh a couple of pounds. He showed me a photo of Seamus Heaney with a sculpture of Suibhne that he'd done for him, which did my heart all kinds of good.

Tomorrow we'll be going out to Carrowkeel, with a local gent as our guide. He runs a little company called Celtic Ways and apparently lives in a thatched house that is heated with peat, in the traditional way. We'll be making Brigid's crosses and hearing some harp music. The name of the woman escapes me but she's pretty well known.

It's 10:55pm here, and the light is finally dying away over Lough Arrow, almost into darkness. Most of the group has gone down for a pub night to take in a traditional seissun, but I was too exhausted to go. [livejournal.com profile] ogam is still here was well, along with a couple of the other folks. I just don't have it in me right now to stay out until after 1am in a noisy crowd. I need some quiet time and personal space for a bit. I hope everyone is having a fantastic time. The music wasn't even supposed to start until 10pm.

And now I'm going to go tuck myself into my cabin and curl up in bed with my notebook to record the events of the day.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
We went out to Heapstown Cairn today to do the Airmed ritual. The site is near houses, but very secluded from view by a ring of trees and a thick shrubbery of rhododendrons. We found a little clearing on the back side of the cairn where we did our ritual, and I dedicated my moss agate ogam feda as I had wished.

Later that afternoon, most of us climbed Knocknarea and did a ritual up at Maeve's Cairn there at the top. Our bus driver asked if we'd take a stone up for him to leave at her cairn, with his regards, which I did very happily. He's apparently been quite enjoying our company and has been hanging out with us and sharing dinner with us. While we were off at Heapstown, he got invited in by one of the local ladies for a cuppa tea and a scone, and asked her about the local folklore, as he likes to be able to share that kind of thing with his passengers if they are interested. Heapstown Cairn is apparently a central cairn with at least three, possibly more, other smaller satellite cairns around it, according to the woman he talked to. He said that the locals claim there is an actual entrance into the cairn, and that they tell their kids not to go into it or they will drown in the well that's hidden beneath, which confirms the local folklore about the Well of Sláine being hidden beneath it.

We were finally able to find Michael Quirke today in his shop, just after we got into Sligo from Knocknarea. He was charming and did small wood engravings for those of us who were there. I commissioned a Suibhne Geilt from him, not quite certain how I was going to pick it up (it's supposed to be ready on Tuesday), but the very kind folks here at the B&B offered to pick it up for me. I'm really excited. He's going to do a plaque with a narrative sort of illustration on it rather than a sculpture in the round, and I think that will be amazing for the incubation chamber when I get home. I'll have to ship it from here before I head over to the Isle of Man (or ship it from Mann when I get there if I haven't the time beforehand). I certainly can't carry it on the plane from Manchester with me unless I dump a bunch of stuff, because it will weigh a couple of pounds. He showed me a photo of Seamus Heaney with a sculpture of Suibhne that he'd done for him, which did my heart all kinds of good.

Tomorrow we'll be going out to Carrowkeel, with a local gent as our guide. He runs a little company called Celtic Ways and apparently lives in a thatched house that is heated with peat, in the traditional way. We'll be making Brigid's crosses and hearing some harp music. The name of the woman escapes me but she's pretty well known.

It's 10:55pm here, and the light is finally dying away over Lough Arrow, almost into darkness. Most of the group has gone down for a pub night to take in a traditional seissun, but I was too exhausted to go. [livejournal.com profile] ogam is still here was well, along with a couple of the other folks. I just don't have it in me right now to stay out until after 1am in a noisy crowd. I need some quiet time and personal space for a bit. I hope everyone is having a fantastic time. The music wasn't even supposed to start until 10pm.

And now I'm going to go tuck myself into my cabin and curl up in bed with my notebook to record the events of the day.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (gull)
Today I got out and got the AAA batteries I needed, and a memory chip for the camera. Papers that needed to be signed were signed, then turned into a PDF and sent off to the appropriate parties. 10 copies of my Brigid & Sarasvati packet were printed for Eight Winds, and someone else asked for the files so he could make more, as he was sure that 10 weren't going to be enough. I sent the files to him. He'll bring more copies with him to the festival.

The Airmed ritual was expanded with more direction about what's actually happening in it, and I sent it off to [livejournal.com profile] vyviane and Jhenah. Everything else seems about as complete as I can make it without attempting to script the rituals, which just doesn't really seem appropriate for the ones in question. I need to email [livejournal.com profile] vyviane again about the herbs specifically for the Airmed ritual so that we're on the same page about that. She's been really busy trying to fill the last couple of slots - we had one person have to cancel, and he's wanting to get something back from it, so he's offering his space for a reduced rate. If you're interested, contact [livejournal.com profile] vyviane or let me know and I'll pass the word along.

I put together the visual aids (ogam letter graphics) for each of the writing exercises and meditations we'll be doing for the pilgrimage, and printed them out. I printed out the revised personal itinerary with the updated contact information for everyone that I have so far. I still need to get my sib's phone number and actual street address in Italy for the contact information file. The only address I have for him right now is an APO, which isn't much use if someone needs to know where I actually am staying.

I transferred a bunch of pilgrimage files over onto my iPad, where I have a program I can actually use to open .docx files, though formatting (in terms of fonts like the ogam font) isn't necessarily highly functional. I'm not sure how to transfer fonts into the program, nor have I been able to figure it out via the manual or the help website. It's not critical, but that's why I've made the ogam letter graphics files and printed them out.

I made some black eyed peas and gluten-free cornbread today. [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor should be here shortly, after having hauled as much of her stuff as she could today. She had a couple of people to help, but not enough to get everything done in one day. I've just been too crazy busy to be able to help.

Tomorrow, more prep for Eight Winds. I have to start packing my clothes and any books and whatnot I want to take for others to have a look at, and I have to make sure that I have all the camping stuff I need. I'm pretty sure I do, but it wouldn't hurt to go through the list again.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (gull)
Today I got out and got the AAA batteries I needed, and a memory chip for the camera. Papers that needed to be signed were signed, then turned into a PDF and sent off to the appropriate parties. 10 copies of my Brigid & Sarasvati packet were printed for Eight Winds, and someone else asked for the files so he could make more, as he was sure that 10 weren't going to be enough. I sent the files to him. He'll bring more copies with him to the festival.

The Airmed ritual was expanded with more direction about what's actually happening in it, and I sent it off to [livejournal.com profile] vyviane and Jhenah. Everything else seems about as complete as I can make it without attempting to script the rituals, which just doesn't really seem appropriate for the ones in question. I need to email [livejournal.com profile] vyviane again about the herbs specifically for the Airmed ritual so that we're on the same page about that. She's been really busy trying to fill the last couple of slots - we had one person have to cancel, and he's wanting to get something back from it, so he's offering his space for a reduced rate. If you're interested, contact [livejournal.com profile] vyviane or let me know and I'll pass the word along.

I put together the visual aids (ogam letter graphics) for each of the writing exercises and meditations we'll be doing for the pilgrimage, and printed them out. I printed out the revised personal itinerary with the updated contact information for everyone that I have so far. I still need to get my sib's phone number and actual street address in Italy for the contact information file. The only address I have for him right now is an APO, which isn't much use if someone needs to know where I actually am staying.

I transferred a bunch of pilgrimage files over onto my iPad, where I have a program I can actually use to open .docx files, though formatting (in terms of fonts like the ogam font) isn't necessarily highly functional. I'm not sure how to transfer fonts into the program, nor have I been able to figure it out via the manual or the help website. It's not critical, but that's why I've made the ogam letter graphics files and printed them out.

I made some black eyed peas and gluten-free cornbread today. [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor should be here shortly, after having hauled as much of her stuff as she could today. She had a couple of people to help, but not enough to get everything done in one day. I've just been too crazy busy to be able to help.

Tomorrow, more prep for Eight Winds. I have to start packing my clothes and any books and whatnot I want to take for others to have a look at, and I have to make sure that I have all the camping stuff I need. I'm pretty sure I do, but it wouldn't hurt to go through the list again.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (egret strutting)
I went down to the VA very early (left the house by 11am) because I wasn't sure how long anything was going to take there. First thing, I went to the pharmacist at the outpatient mental health clinic to see about getting the scrip for my tramadol renewed. He said he'd send off the request to the women's clinic, so that was okay. I explained how things had been going there and he said it wouldn't hurt to check in at the desk there and make sure everything was taken care of and that somebody would see and approve the scrip renewal. That took maybe ten minutes, so very smooth.

After that I stopped up at radiology and had my foot x-rayed. That, also, was considerably faster than I'd expected. I think I maybe waited five minutes before I was called, and the x-rays themselves were also done very quickly.

Given the time, I went and grabbed some lunch at the cafeteria, sat in the back courtyard and read for a bit afterwards, then went and checked in for my 3pm with Tracy, because while I was enjoying the warmth, it was very sunny and I didn't want to get a burn before I headed to California. Tracy had time early, so I got in a little after 2pm, and was out of there slightly after 3. I stopped at the Women's Clinic to check in about the tramadol scrip and add [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor as a local emergency medical contact for me, which didn't take long. That meant that I got through the travel office and was up on the Hill at Travelers before 4.

Mom called while I was having chai, and we talked for a few minutes. I ran into Dana there, and we hung out and talked for a bit. It was her first Seattleversary -- she'd moved to Seattle a year ago. She was kittysitting for [livejournal.com profile] nathan_fhtagn (who is on a cruise in the Mediterranean right now) and we wandered over to his place for a few to pet the kitties. They are very cute and entirely adorable.

When I got done there, I headed back up to Travelers, getting a text from [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor as I was walking up there, so we met and hung out there for a bit. We talked a little and I told her I was feeling a little guilty about not being able to help, given that she's packing and going to be moving up to Marysville this weekend. (If you're local and you might be able to help her, please send her a note asking for details. She could use a couple of able bodies and vehicles if you are available.) She was feeling a little wobbly after having spent too much of the day dealing with bad car stuff, so I made her walk over to the QFC with me so she could get something to eat, then we went over to Edge for a bit. She had Irish class and I just didn't have the time to deal with it tonight, so I left her there and headed on home.

When I got home, I finally got around to dealing with a seatbelt issue that was kind of annoying. While I'm not exactly short, the seat belt is sized for someone either rounder or taller than me, so the edge of it often sits right above my collarbone and is really irritating for long drives. I hauled my awl out there and stitched the two parts of the belt together so that they'd sit in the appropriate place for my body. It's only taken me 10 years to get around to it... I also went and slapped some duct tape over the place where the iPod connection is wired into the dash so that the cord doesn't keep slipping down and interfering with my foot on the gas pedal. It was never actively dangerous, just slightly annoying, but that makes two annoying car issues I dealt with today, so go me!

Email was sent off to [livejournal.com profile] seanthedruid and [livejournal.com profile] druid_medb about upcoming Eight Winds stuff. I was asking about the food plan and what was on their menu so that I had some idea of what food I would have to get to fend for myself at meals where there wasn't anything I could really eat. (Breakfast is a very usual culprit there for me, given my egg allergy and my problems with bacon and some sausages causing migraines.) I don't want to buy anything I'm not going to actually need. I know they usually have half & half, which I take in my tea in the morning, so I won't worry about that.

Just as promised, Written River came out today, featuring three of my poems! You can read it online at the link. It's absolutely gorgeous, so please have a look!

Finally, I spent time and outlined the closing ritual for the pilgrimage. I spent time going over my notes and the opening ritual, which I want to echo in some ways, to give a sense of having come full circle on our journey. I got some useful input on the other rituals from [livejournal.com profile] joyful_storm and sent off a note to the email list with a note about the Airmed ritual so that folks will have a heads up that personal work can be a part of that ritual if they want. She was right that people might want to have some notice, so they can give it thought before we get into the ritual itself. I gave them a rough idea of our timeframe for the ritual and for that portion of it.

All in all, it was a really busy day for me and, though I would have liked to do Irish class tonight, I really did need to be here dealing with my prep for my trips.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (writy pooped)
Today's major project was meeting up online with Jhenah and [livejournal.com profile] vyviane, which was about a three hour conference chat as we worked out when and how things were happening. It was a good thing we did this, because I'd accidentally been left out of the loop for a change/shift in the schedule that left me going into a panic until they said that they'd take care of that day and we're just shifting two days of stuff from the schedule I'd been given into one day. It'll make for a rather more full day than I'd quite anticipated, with two different sets of readings/writing exercises, but I think I can live with that. I will probably want/need a down day by that point in the pilgrimage anyway, so it all worked out okay.

I did the outline for the incubation rituals today and shared that, and all the other outlines/exercises/rituals with them that I'd done so far. They've approved everything with only a couple of logistical changes that are perfectly okay by me. The last thing I have to do is write up the closing ritual; for the extra day/theme bit that we're doing, I can write up a quick ogam meditation to go with that so they can use it in more or less the same pattern I was using for the other days and places. They said they'd get back to me on that.

This basically means I have the opening ritual, all of my days of meditations and writing exercises, the incubation and dream incubation rituals, and the Airmed ritual pretty much finished, so only the closing rite needs to be really worried about now. Everything else is fine-tuning and expansion, and a lot of it can just be done from an outline rather than being something strictly scripted. The opening and closing rituals are more along the lines of "needs a script" while the others are just a series of events where everyone participates and contributes to the making of the ritual as it is happening. I still need to send stuff off to [livejournal.com profile] joyful_storm for her to look over. I'll try to remember that tomorrow while I'm working on the closing ritual.

I think I'm a little better at dealing with sudden (to me) changes when I'm actually in a place where we're right there and things have changed and we just have to get on with it, than with something where I accidentally got left out of the loop. Mostly it was a function of the fact that I don't actually read Facebook, and some of the things were discussed there and not actually on the pilgrimage list.

In other news, over on the Aedicula Antinoi blog, there was a post about the hero-feast of Suibhne Geilt, and my work in the Disability and Religious Diversity anthology was mentioned pretty prominently. I was really pleased by this. I didn't do a ritual for it today, but working on the pilgrimage was a lot of what has been necessary, and I suspect a panic attack was a suitable event for a day dedicated to a poet-madman. ;)

Also today I got an email from Hiraeth Press with the proof of the upcoming issue of Written River, featuring three of my poems as a preview of Fireflies at Absolute Zero, due out this fall. This is due for release on the 20th of June, with a publication date for the hard copy of the magazine due next week, so I'll let you know as soon as I hear anything, so if you want a paper copy you can actually get one. I'll be getting at least one myself.

[livejournal.com profile] alfrecht sent me an essay he did on syncretisms of Minerva, which he'd mentioned yesterday when I saw him. It concerns some possible syncretisms with Brigid, and a mention of a Sulis perpetual flame that I hadn't heard about before, so I'm going to be looking those bits up when I have time and bandwidth, and possibly adding mention of them to my Queering the Flame essay for the Queer Magic anthology. He says that should be ready by end of the year-ish, if all goes well. It'll be nice to have that done. I'm very much looking forward to having that material available, as I think it's important. I read the essay and found it informative, as his work always tends to be. Some good and useful stuff there and I'll have to dig a little more deeply into it when I get home.

I spent time in #writechat today, and also did a load of laundry. I managed to have the wherewithal to do a little bit of soup from duck broth I had in the freezer, French green lentils, cashew pieces, dried salal berries, a little bit of fenugreek seed, and some sambar powder. I topped it with a couple of small scoops of yogurt and it was really very good. I was quite pleased.

Overall, a pretty good day (except for the panic attack part) and I got a ton of stuff done.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
Today's task was doing research and work on outlining the Airmed ritual for our visit to Heapstown Cairn. I reviewed several texts and looked at different websites where people talk about their particular takes on her, including a couple of rituals to/for her from different groups. So much hating on Dian Cécht over the whole thing, but it helps to remember that the incident with Miach replacing Nuadha's hand in the text of Second Battle of Mag Tuired occurs before the battle, and before Dian Cécht, Miach, Airmed and Octriuil are chanting around the Well of Sláine. Miach, though a surgeon, is a plant-god from whom all the healing herbs grow and so rises anew on a pretty frequent basis if one looks at it properly.

All the healing herbs of Ireland were brought to Lus Mag (the Plain of Herbs) by Dian Cécht and put into the Well of Sláine, so presumably they came from Miach's cairn and needed to be taken from there before the healing work could even begin. Time in myths is not nearly so linear, and deities die and reappear alive without any referent to actual human lifespans and life cycles. Is it so hard to believe that the story of Dian Cécht's "jealousy" might really be a setup for the creation of needed healing materials that could later be used by all of them? Or that it was unreasonable for Dian Cécht to keep the secrets of healing all ills from humans by scattering the herbs on Airmed's cloak? She, after all, did keep the secrets of these herbs. Though the text of the story says "the Holy Spirit" knows them, we can be certain it was Airmed -- who sorted through them in the first place -- who knows what they do.

Anyway, research was done and an outline produced and sent off to Jhenah and [livejournal.com profile] vyviane. I also spent a few minutes doing a drabble for the weekly fic challenge in one of the communities I read, which was fun.

Tomorrow is a trip down to Seattle to do some clothes shopping for the pilgrimage with [livejournal.com profile] joyful_storm, and to meet for a bit with [livejournal.com profile] alfrecht and [livejournal.com profile] neo_lux. If I have any spoons when I get home, I'll probably work on the incubation rituals. [livejournal.com profile] vyviane tells me we are way ahead of schedule, which helps slightly, but so much of my stuff really kind of has to be done before I leave. I'm glad her end of things is working so very smoothly! It gives me hope for the rest of the pilgrimage as well.

Sunday I'm doing a Skype chat with Jhenah to discuss ritual and other stuff. Things are proceeding apace.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (gull at sunset)
I was awakened by the postal carrier, who had one of my prescriptions for a signature. The last two shipments from the VA didn't include non-childproof caps, which is very annoying and I'm going to have to talk with them about it.

I headed down to Seattle early for the CR schmooze tonight. I actually got a fair bit of work done, finishing one of the basic instructions section for part of the daily meditations on the pilgrimage, and making more detailed notes on the various ogam feda we'll be focusing on each day of the pilgrimage. Now that I have them (two for each day, to follow the various themes), I can work on the actual material I'll be sharing with folks before we actually go into the cauldron meditations. That'll be about one page for each day, and then I have to choose appropriate readings and the precise writing prompts for each day.

I still have to do more than outline the opening and closing rituals, the incubation in the barrows, and the dream incubation, and the Airmed ritual for Heapstown cairn.

While I was at Travelers, I ran into [livejournal.com profile] neo_lvx, and (briefly) Craigula, and we spent a little time catching up with one another. The schmooze this evening was a really good discussion of books and resources published since the release of the CR FAQ. We are, supposedly, going to post some of our suggestions for newer books on the Puget Sound CR list, where we can then compile things and post them around here and there in response for the folks who want newer material. There are, sadly, still not a lot of actual CR books available yet, and from what was said, apparently nobody's actually talking on the lists and whatnot about writing them. I doubt that I'm the only person working on new things, but a lot of that is happening on a few blogs, not on the lists or the various online communities.

It was really good to see [livejournal.com profile] wire_mother again today. He's not been able to make it to the last several schmoozes, and I've very much missed his company and his contributions.

Tomorrow is the steampunk social, and I think quite a few folks will actually be there, as there has been some discussion on the Steamrats list regarding north-end activities and gatherings. The Krakening tends to be where a lot of that stuff gets planned, and the first Tuesday of the month is generally the most heavily attended social.

I've exchanged emails with [livejournal.com profile] seanthedruid about funds for my travel to Eight Winds. He's in Massachusetts right now but promises to get something out to me shortly. I'll be glad when that's out of the way. I need to remember to see if there will be a bed at the Ashland Hostel on the way down to California at the end of the month, and reserve one if there is. Given the time of year, if they don't have one, then I'll go ahead and push for Redding and get a cheap motel there, as it'll still be light for the pass through the Siskiyous, which makes it a much less harrowing drive.

I need to look at my calendar tomorrow and decide what day I'm heading south. I'll probably stay the night before Eight Winds at [livejournal.com profile] seanthedruid's place again, as it was a reasonable drive from there out to the campsite in the Sierras. I also need to do a quick review of the Brigid and Sarasvati presentation and make sure I have all the handouts together so I can make cheap copies before I leave. There won't be any copy shops where I'm headed.

The other thing I need to do this week is see if I can get Garuda checked over and the oil changed on Thursday. While that's going on, I'll see about getting a haircut and getting the green streak bleached so I'll be able to re-dye my hair when it's short again. The hair's getting down into my eyes and being really irritating again lately.

Busy Erynn is still way too damned busy. I'm glad I have friends who understand that and support me in my work.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (ow. Robertson Davies)
So I went to the VA early and talked to the supervisor about the whole travel thing. It turns out that the co-pay is probably the one thing in the system where being rated at 100% doesn't actually benefit you. The co-pay is taken out if you get above $X per month, and I'm above that cutoff. Okay, I can handle that. Would have been nice, but so it goes.

Group today was actually pretty good and I had a good time, but the wait down at the travel office was kind of fucked, it was raining when I got out, and I was just too tired to face human beings by the time I was done, so I came back home straightaway. I fixed myself some dinner and something booz0rz-like and tried to relax but, as Patrick promised, I hurt like hell today. I actually tried to go lie down for a while around 9:30 or so and that helped my shoulder, but I couldn't feel sleepy. I played some Plants v Zombies and read for a while and now I'm back up again. Had a wee bit of chocolate pudding as a snack and will probably head back for bed shortly.

I bought tickets for myself and [livejournal.com profile] gra_is_stor for Metropolis. I don't think she's seen it before, and this is probably the best possible introduction to the movie I can imagine. I'm very excited about taking her to see it. (I just hope she likes it...)

Teo Bishop posted a blog today asking "What is the point of your religion". It's a thoughtful post and has generated some interesting discussion in the comments. I know I want to talk about this at some point, but today wasn't a good day to focus on it. If I have time and brain bandwidth tomorrow, I might do a response post over on Searching for Imbas. I'm just hoping I'll have enough momentum to actually write it, rather than getting bogged down in my physical stuff and losing the thread. I'm keeping the tab open on the browser until I deal with it, though.

It seems that one of my Vancouver friends is going to be down in the area for the better part of May. Among other things, he'll be teaching a class on herbalism, and wants to talk to me about Airmed, whom he's been working with for a while now. He says he'll be splitting his time between Olympia, Bellingham, and Seattle, and I told him that he could stay here for a few days if he'd like, which would give us ample opportunity to talk. He's one of the poets who is also included in the Mandragora anthology, and I'd suggested he submit his work to them, so we might both have a physical copy to squee over when he gets here.

I know I have some comments to reply to from yesterday, but I'm still too achy to focus much on that right now. I'll get to everything tomorrow at some point.

In news on Circle of Stones, I've got one of the review blurbs back, and two outstanding. I've forwarded the first one to my editor and publisher and told them I was waiting on a couple more. They should arrive soon, I think. I haven't yet seen the cover, aside from the graphics base, but I should be seeing a draft of it soon. And tomorrow I need to do the check of the edited galley proof, as I'll have more time than I did today. Last night I barely slept (turned out the lights around 3:30am, woke at 8am, after having not slept much), so I'm feeling extra rocky today and hoping to get at least a little rest tonight.

On that note, back to bed to try to actually rest. I wish there was something I could actually take that would make a dent in this pain. Have taken tylenol, and also took some of the valerian and feverfew I often use for migraines. It's helped slightly, but not anywhere near enough. That was a few hours ago, so I'll try a tramadol before I get in bed and see if that will do anything for it.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Ogma)
Earlier today, I went to a couple of places in Everett to drop off some postcards for the pilgrimage, and an information packet also went to Vision Quest, which is a small new age shop that also has some Pagan clientele here in town. They were willing to carry the information and I told them that if anyone was actually interested in going, they should give them the information packet as well as a postcard.

I still haven't gone out grocery shopping, but I was too busy dealing with finishing up the ogam feda, which I posted a photo of earlier today. I also did a longer and more involved post about the process, with another photo of the finished set, over at my Searching for Imbas blog. This particular ogam set is dedicated to Airmed, which I talk about at some length on the blog entry. After all this, my arms ache like a sumbitch.

Tomorrow is the usual Tuesday steampunk social. I still haven't done my grocery shopping, but I did at least get important ritual work done. I'll try to deal with groceries tomorrow, though I might go over to Albertson's tonight to at least pick up a quart of half and half so I can have my tea tomorrow. The last of my previous quart went off yesterday, so I had to have oolong instead of black tea first thing today, and my tummy didn't respond well to the strong tea without milk in it. I usually have black tea with half and half.
erynn: Gaelic merman image (ow. Robertson Davies)
Today was the CR schmooze down in Seattle. I headed down early and got two packets printed up for the Ireland pilgrimage, and five sheets of the postcards done so that I could leave info at Edge of the Circle. I left one of the packets there, and will probably leave the other at East West if I can get there sometime soon. During the schmooze, Patrick did some work on my arms; this helped but I'm still aching a lot.

Spent some time at Kaladi Brothers today pre-schmooze so that I could do a little work on the pilgrimage material and still have internet access. I worked through some ideas for the opening ritual at Brigid's well in Kildare, though there's obviously still quite a bit to do. [livejournal.com profile] vyviane kindly got an itinerary together in a format I can work with, which I printed out and will be hauling around with me while I scribble ideas. I've also got some of the material I want to do the day we visit Newgrange, Knowth, and Tara. I'm thinking we'll work on prompts dealing with sacred time and space, so the story of Oengus and the Daghda, and the Settling of the Manor of Tara would be the texts for that day. I want to look at how we see ourselves in landscape/time/space, but also to consider what we consider our sacred center.

Due to scheduling, Heapstone Cairn got added back into the itinerary, which means I can do some devotional work with Airmed while I'm in Ireland as well, which is an unexpected but very happy surprise. Local legend has it that the Well of Sláine is buried beneath the cairn, and that Lough Arrow is the site of the Second Battle of Mag Tuired, so there's a lot going on, mythologically, in the landscape. In regards to Brigid as the center of the pilgrimage, it might also be a place where we can talk about the origins of keening and do work surrounding grief and loss for our writing.

There is just SO MUCH STUFF that can potentially be covered in all this. It's hard to know how to condense it all into manageable amounts. Though I suppose it's better to have way more than I need than to try to stretch a thin membrane of information to the breaking point. I need to figure out where in each day a class/workshop might fit. *ponders schedule*
erynn: Gaelic merman image (Airmed)
I am firmly convinced that "discipline" does not have to mean getting up at the crack of dawn. The only reason I should ever see the sunrise is because I'm getting ready to go to bed. )

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