If you are reading my column in the early Saturday morning darkness, then you still have time to view the lunar eclipse. Put this paper down (or the Internet) and go out and watch. I already checked the sky charts for northern Indiana, and they assure me the sky will be clear. The eclipse actually started at 5:01 a.m. today, but optimum viewing is 7:19 a.m.
This lovely eclipse is the first one of the year and the shortest in the 21st Century. (Please don’t read any further until you have gone outside!) This lunar eclipse is called the Blood Moon because of the reddish color. It also coincides with the full moon of April, known as the pink moon (for the blooming phlox along the road) or the Egg Moon (having to do with rebirth and Easter) which is today as well. There has been much talk about this eclipse stating it could be the end of the world. I have checked out the reports, and scientists and astronomers alike have agreed it is not the end of the world. And as much as I am tempted to insert a political comment regarding the events of this past week in Indiana, I will refrain. (We can save that for the coffee shop!)
According to folklore and the Farmer’s Almanac, this is the week to cut, trim, prune and plant underground plants such as carrots, potatoes, radishes, etc. I know I will be planting my kale seeds this week. I doubt I will be planting in the dark under the full moon, but one never knows.
If I were Garrison Keillor I could go on to say that it was a quiet week in my hometown of Angola this week. The streets were quiet as well as the local eateries, with most folks headed out of town for the famous spring break holiday. My own family was gone all week, and I must be honest, it was nice having this quiet week to myself. (If my family is reading this column … great to have you back!)
When my sons were living at home, we spent spring break learning on our spring breaks. One year we went to Chicago by train and spent the week at museums. I loved that week! Another year we went to Gettysburg and studied Lincoln for a week. I don’t believe they got to Florida until they were in high school. I do know those wonderful trips helped shape them into the men they are today by giving them experiences to open up their eyes and minds.
By the time we arrived home everything was different … crocuses were blooming, the daffodils were ready to pop with color and the spring peepers had arrived. It was and still is a lovely feeling to come home late at night and hear the peepers in the spring time. I had an out-of-town guest this week who loved coming into our town and being greeted by the quietness of our darkened streets and the beauty of Miss Columbia. He also commented about the sound of the peepers.
It is Easter weekend. I pull out photos of all my brothers and sisters to see us lined up in our Easter finest. We always had new dresses, hats, gloves and so much chocolate that it lasted until the end of the school year. Down the street from our house was an abby. As a child on Easter mornings I biked over early to watch the awakenings of the convent. I was in awe of the nuns and their beauty and devotion to God. I often told my folks that I wanted to be a Baptist nun. Alas, alas.
I think Easter is so different as a grown-up and, with no children to get ready for the day, it is quieter and more reflective. I mean, Christmas is about love and giving, but Easter must be a day for forgiveness. The gift of forgiveness must be one of our greatest gifts, and yet one of our hardest to complete.
On this Easter weekend I do wish for you to have children in new shiny shoes and baskets brimming with chocolate. It is the end of Lent and the churches are full of singing and praises. But perhaps it is the rebirth of our own souls. Take some time to walk alone in the park, in the woods, by the lake. Be good to yourself and to others, and forgive that which we cannot change.
LOU ANN HOMAN-SAYLOR lives in Angola at the White Picket Gardens where you can find her gardening or writing late into the night under the light of her frayed scarlet lamp. She is a storyteller, teacher, writer, actress and a collector of front porch stories. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.