"memorial" to the old year
Happy New Year! Sara and I spent the holidays with her sister in "sunny" California. I decided to take a walk - a long walk - on New Year's Day to prepare mind, body and spirit for promises of 2020 and beyond.
Eddy and Tom live high on a cliff over looking Santa Catalina Island (yep, 26 miles away as in the old song) and Pacific Ocean beyond it. A virtual paradise.
As I began my walk along the ocean side, I approached a group of about 15 people standing in a circle around 2 chairs, one empty except for 2 fading photographs, and one filled by a older woman reading from a notebook. Behind the empty chair stood a two men, one holding a horned skeleton head and the other holding a black flag. Four other flags of different colors were positioned to mark boundaries of a circle. I stopped, removed my hat, and stood outside the circle until invited to step inside - despite being a total stranger to this Native American celebration of the life of a departed relative.
When reading ended, white doves were removed from a box. Each person who wished to participate were given a dove which, on cue, was released in a flurry to fly to a destination unseen.
I don't have words to express the meaning of that encounter for me. Perhaps this picture offers words for you. Happy New Year!
1/4/2020 03:09:51 pm
Bill this touched me very deeply. The image you captured so beautifully speaks of your experience totally
1/5/2020 01:38:15 pm
We've taken a hiatus from communicating with friends from the Norway trip while we have spent 12 days in NZ, 3 months in Australia, 1 month on an OAT tour in India, and 2 days in Switzerland on the way back to Colorado. Thank you for sharing the link to your blog, Bill, and for expressing so beautifully in pencil and word the deeply meaningful ceremony you shared with native Americans.
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