Sunday, June 7, 2009

Day One-hundred Thirty-four

These could have been snapped on a sunny, cool day in Spring, heading out West.

Day One-hundred Thirty-three

Dicrocerus elegans is an extinct species of deer found in central Europe (related species in Asia). It stood 70cm (2 ft 4 in) tall at the shoulder - the same size as roe deer. Its long skull sported a set of antlers with a thickened base - the first members of cervids to possess them. The antlers were still quite primitive and had no tines; they were worn only by the males.

probably came from Asia, from the region where true deer have originated and evolved. It inhabited forests in the temperate belt and in Europe it was typical of the Miocene (10-5 million years ago). It died out at the beginning of Pliocene without leaving any descendants.

The Irish Elk or Giant Deer (Megaloceros giganteus), was a species of Megaloceros and one of the largest deer that ever lived. Its range extended across Eurasia, from Ireland to east of Lake Baikal, during the Late Pleistocene.

The Irish Elk stood about 2.1 metres (6.9 ft) tall at the shoulders, and it had the largest antlers of any known cervid (a maximum of 3.65 m (12.0 ft) from tip to tip and weighing up to 40 kilograms (88 lb)).

The nine species of chevrotain, also known as mouse deer, make up the family Tragulidae. Chevrotains are small, secretive creatures now found only in the tropical forests of Africa, India, Sri Lanka, and South-east Asia. They are the only living members of the infraorder Tragulina.

The Telugu name for the animal is "Jarini Pandi", which literally means "a deer and a mouse". The word 'chevrotain' itself is French, andcan be translated as 'little goat'.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Day One-hundred Thirty-two

The rain seems to bring something out in people... But what about the day after the rain? What does the return of the sun make you want to do?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Day One-hundred Thirty-one

I woke up from my nap around seven o'clock yesterday. The sky light was just barely starting to fade, so I decided to go run an errand.

It's funny, when you're in a hurry, you notice all sorts of interesting new things, new distractions. In my case, as I went out I noticed a woman having a yard sale on a side street.

Usually you don't see people having yard sales so late, but hey who's to judge. I said hello and we made some chit chat about the weather lately. She suggested some shoes to me, and I ended up getting them since they were so cute. The woman didn't want any money though, but wanted to trade shoes since we were the same size. Kind of weird, but, these shoes were much nicer.

I waved bye and walked on. The shoes shimmered as I walked, and seemed to leave a trail of light and dust behind them. As I turned the corner to get back on the main street. As soon as I turned, I felt a sudden discomfort in my feet - something was in my left shoe. There was a key I hadn't noticed before. I got up and turned around to go back to the woman so I could return it, but the corner wasn't there.

I was still along the path, and it was similar to my usual one, lined with flowers and trees but no houses... The side street was gone, and the usual activity at this time of day was absent; instead, I was in a still forest, serene and light.

I kept going and things seemed to get more off. The plants seemed to be more "different" somehow, the path just led straight on, I couldn't find my destination. Suddenly, I came to be overlooking a fabulous view of a castle...

I was pretty worried at this point, but I also felt a little exhilarated. Who could be living there? So I hurried towards it. I made it there much more quickly than I expected; I found I could navigate the rough terrain and move faster than I normally would be able to for some reason, maybe the shoes? I made it to the town at the base of the castle, which appeared to be floating on the moat.

A older woman with elongated, thin limbs and wide, bright eyes appeared like an apparition next to me, with a companion. She was in a wooden boat, that sort of looked like a large, wide bucket or tub. She held a long stick and gestured for me to hop in. Feeling extremely nervous, I gave a little curtsy and obliged.

The woman pushed off and started navigating the channels, her friend grinning at me. I smiled back, and then couldn't help but to take in the view; the sky was fully of the beauty of the setting sun.

We went some distance out from the town and then docked. There was forest and a path that led to a gate. (I couldn't believe I still had further to go, it all looked much more compact from my view earlier). I hopped stepped out, and turned around to thank my guides. I wasn't sure what to give, so I took off my vintage charm bracelet.

They were very delighted, and handed me a small bottle full of silvery, incandescent dust. She pushed back out to water, and seemed to dissolve the further away she got. It was getting dark...

I approached the gate. There were street lamps that being lit up, but by who I don't know... There were candles in the, so it must have been by someone... Anyway, I opened the gate and walked through. When I did, everything seemed strangely lit.

I entered the castle...

And felt compelled to explore. The details of the architecture were stunning; the floors and walls were meticulously decorated. I found myself wanting to go up and up the stairs, to the top floor.

I explored every bedroom. They were beautiful and lush, extravagant but simple. No one was with me, but I felt like I was being led, being shown around.

There were many crowns on display in the last room I entered. Was this the room of the monarchs, or of children who love to play dress-up and make-believe? Even if we are from different worlds, we aren't so different than each other... These were my thoughts as my eyes grew heavy.

I didn't even feel myself fall asleep, but I found myself suddenly waking up. I was in a vacant lot in my neighborhood, full of the just slightly strange atmosphere of the place I had just been. I got up, dusted myself off, and stepped on to the sidewalk. I realized, this was the side street I had turned off from, and this lot was the woman's lot who was having the yard sale.

The lot was empty though; even the strangeness had left it. I noticed I still had my new shoes though, and my key, and the bottle of dust the boat woman had given me. It was almost completely dark by now - not sure what to do, I went to complete my errand - I really wanted to buy some cupcakes from the bakery!

On my way home, I left one at the vacant lot.

How was your day?

Day One-hundred Thirty

'Like my companion, who saw all that I saw of the first three lights, I formerly had always been a sceptic as to the existence of spirits; now I know that there is a spiritual world. My brother, a physician, had been equally sceptical until he saw, near our home at Listowel, similar lights containing spiritual beings and was obliged to admit the genuineness of the phenomena,

'In whatever country we may be, I believe that we are for ever immersed in the spiritual world; but most of us cannot perceive it on account of the unrefined nature of our physical bodies. Through meditation and psychical training one can come to see the spiritual world and its beings. We pass into the spirit realm at death and come back into the human world at birth; and we continue to reincarnate until we have overcome all earthly desires and mortal appetites. Then the higher life is open to our consciousness and we cease to be human; we become divine beings.'

'The beings whom I call the Sidhe, I divide, as I have seen them, into two great classes: those which are shining, and those which are opalescent and seem lit up by a light within themselves. The shining beings appear to be lower in the hierarchies; the opalescent beings are more rarely seen, and appear to hold the positions of great chiefs or princes among the tribes of Dana.'

'The first of these I saw I remember very clearly, and the manner of its appearance: there was at first a dazzle of light, and then I saw that this came from the heart of a tall figure with a body apparently shaped out of half-transparent or opalescent air, and throughout the body ran a radiant, electrical fire, to which the heart seemed the centre. Around the head of this being and through its waving luminous hair, which was blown all about the body like living strands of gold, there appeared flaming wing-like auras. From the being itself light seemed to stream outwards in every direction; and the effect left on me after the vision was one of extraordinary lightness, joyousness, or ecstasy.'

'At a wake I went out of doors at midnight and saw a woman running up and down the field with a strange light in her hand. I called out my daughter, but she saw nothing, though all the time the woman dressed in white was in the field, shaking the light and running back and forth as fast as you could wink.'

'Old people used to say the gentry were in the mountains; that is certain, but I never could be quite sure of it myself. One night, however, near midnight, I did have a sight: I set out from Bantrillick to come home, and near Ben Bulbin there was the greatest army you ever saw, five or six thousand of them in armour shining in the moonlight. A strange man rose out of the hedge and stopped me, for a minute, in the middle of the road. He looked into my face, and then let me go.'

'A young man at Drumcliffe was taken [in a trance state], and was with the Daoine Maithe some time, and then got back. Another man, whom I knew well, was haunted by the gentry for a long time, and he often went off with them.'

Have you ever been off with them? Walking in the forest one day at dusk, you might find yourself in the Wood between the Worlds, or maybe swimming in the ocean you'll suddenly be spirited away to the palace under the sea...

From: The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries


The old things will be kept and stashed away, in a box that hopefully won't collect too much dust... As for the new, welcome to the Phantasmagorium, a mindspace of wonder, morbidity, fantasy, beauty, a touch of surreality under the facade of mundanity. A vision, perhaps, of how we like to think of ourselves... This place is an attempt to grasp at that.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Pardon Our Dust

A whole month... Well, it's been a busy month; finals and projects, a death in the family, work picking up, starting the (whirlwind) summer semester.. While I was having some trouble before keeping up, time really evaporated since then.

I'd like to keep this venture alive, so I apologize to anyone who may have missed it. I'm going to dust it off and rework it, in consideration of the demands and stresses of my life - I really do want to keep a log of the lighter side of life, but perhaps the format (daily), while good, isn't so good for me, at least not at the moment. So please stay tuned...