After a quiet afternoon visit to the Miyazaki Shrine, I was 'Spirited Away' by the Studio Ghibli exhibition at the nearby art museum. They had thousands of pages of original layout drawings drafted by the directors' own hand and intention, marked up with staging directions and filming cues. From this world of increasing polarization, it was a magical escape into the deep nonjudgmental acceptance and integration that Ghibli consistently portrays from the very first scenes of the debut 'Nausicaa' through classics like 'Totoro', 'Kiki', and 'Mononoke' to the most recent 'Marnie'. This is the summer that Miyazaki came to Miyazaki--
Thank you to EarthWalkers for providing support opportunities such as this--
Clear skies, deep blue twilight, and not too cold-- a perfect evening for 'hatsumode'. This is the time when everyone in Japan goes to the local shrines to connect with the spirit of the land for an auspicious new year. From here in Miyazaki, I'm wishing you a happy and successful 2018!
Happy New Year!
This is 'osechi', traditional Japanese New Year's cuisine. It comes in a giant 3-tiered wooden 'bento' box filled with symbolic foods such as shrimp for longevity, lotus root for success, candied chestnuts for wealth, and candied black beans for vitality. May your life be filled with all of these--
Live long and prosper--
Mercury has just gone Direct, wrapping up a few weeks swerving through its Retrograde cycle. Much like a good night's sleep, Mercury Retrograde periods are perfect times to reflect, clear out the old backlogs, and prepare for a bright new day. And that day is now dawning! Mercury just going Direct is like waking up from a deep sleep, so take a moment to shower, brush your teeth, eat some breakfast, and power up to create the awesome goodness that is coming with the New Year 2018!
For those of us in the bewintered North, today marks the longest night of the year. If you are a night owl or vampire, please make the most of it! For the rest of you, have a long, deep, fruitful dreamtime... As for me, having already spent years as a dreamy vampire, I'm looking forward to the days getting longer and longer from now. Yay! And for those of you in the South, today is your longest DAY of the year! Get out and enjoy that late afternoon sun!
The waning moon just passed its peak and will start showing us a fresh new face, so look for that lovely silver sliver of a crescent slowly expanding over the next few days. Look for it around sunset, hanging large just above the setting sun before following it down for the night...
New moons are great times to prepare and start new things. And with the sun soon to follow suit in the northern winter solstice and Mercury to go direct again just after that at week's end, the up and coming new year is going to be perfectly positioned for launching new projects.
So if you've got something new in the works, work on wrapping up your final preparations this week and the next. Then get ready to put it on the menu for 2018. Good luck, and may the Force be with you--