Scenes and scribbles to herald the start of yule

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What a sunset. I hope Odin had a jolly good hunt after sunset. We’ll only know when we confirm that the days are getting longer again. I wonder can anyone tell me what Odin/Woden on his eight-legged horse (with his buddies) actually hunt at this time of year. Are we talking animals? People? Spirits? I guess it’s not general solstace knowledge because anyone who might chance to meet him on such a night, will certainly be in no fit state to go writing a book about it.

Happy Yuletide my Pagan friends.
Don’t think you are pagan? Look to your traditions and look to your ancestors.

One thing you probably don’t know about me is that I got in trouble at school for refusing to sing a Christmas song, because I hated it.
I still hate it.
Whilst perambulating around the local supermarket I was exposed to the most offensive and quite frankly nauseating American kid singing version I have ever heard, and to my horror, there was nowhere to hide. Complete with faux sincerity and attempted virtuosity.
I speak, of course, of the little drummer boy and his incessant purupapumpumming. By far the worst thing about this festive season. It would appear that I am not the only one, which is both disappointing and reassuring because a) I’m not unique in this hatred and b) there are others who share the sentiment, rational or otherwise.

Equally important seasonal equine information comes in the miasmic shape of experience shared. You see, yesterday it was windy. In fact, the wind was gusting like an angry flock of herons (pretty sure they don’t actually flock, those wiley theives). The horses were pissed off at being dragged away from their sheltered field into the wide open countryside and stripped of any comfy snug rugs, and coerced without so much as a soggy carrot into suiting up and carrying some extra kilos.
Now between my riding partner and I we had a sore back and a saddle sore, so we figured a nice gentle mooch around then pootling home, but the hairy beasties had other ideas. We had some nice canters, figured we’d warn them out then tried our luck down a track partially blocked by a large yellow jcb horse-eating monster. Mel just stood staring at it, so I figured my old lad wouldn’t blink at it, so we went in front. Oh how wrong I was. Within seconds we were facing the wrong way, primed to bolt. So, dutifully my friend got off her mare and led her through the gap between the hedge and the static and silent metal monstrosity. Buster wasn’t brave enough to wait behind, so he danced sideways past it, threatening to wipe out my friend, and generally behaving like a silly billy with the wind in his tail. We made it out the other side, jogging along, still keeping one eye on thay creepy industrial horror just in case it pounced. I told him he was brave even though he was a total wimp. So the lessons here are: horses, no matter how old or well-trained, are never bombproof, and if you want to test the bombproofedness of your steed, then maybe wait for the winds to drop first. Or make sure your bum is superglued in place.

“The clouds will part and the sky cracks open
and god himself will reach his fucking arm through
just to push you down
just to hold you down”

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