Sometimes a season can go on and on. Here it is, the winter solstice, and my summer is just coming to an end. Part of me doesn’t want it to end (who ever wants summer to end?), but I’m ready for a new season. The darkness is beautiful and rich, and out of it comes growth.
I didn’t stay up last night for the lunar eclipse – honestly, I couldn’t keep my eyes open. I would have loved it, I’m sure, but tonight did the trick for me – a community celebration in a community I love.
Earlier this evening, I joined some new friends (oh, how I love new friends!) for the Winter Solstice Lantern Festival. We gathered at Leg-in-Boot Square on the seawall of Southeast False Creek a few minutes before 6:00, and were joined by a gaggle of parents with strollers and foreign exchange students and curious passersby. And of course, there were drums – what would a solstice event be without drums? Several people showed up with amazing lanterns, similar to those I’ve seen at Illuminares and the Vancouver Folk Music Festival:When the procession began, the group split into two. Some headed west to Granville Island, while my gang strolled east along the seawall toward the (former Olympic) Athletes Village. What a view… Vancouver at night. My shaky hand had a hard time capturing it, but the lights across False Creek looked something like this:Though the temperature was in the mid-40’s, it felt almost balmy (I know, I can’t believe I just wrote that). Even though there were drops of rain, I swear I didn’t feel it… it’s funny, this kind of rain – it’s almost invisible sometimes, at least when you’re wearing the right clothes.
From the bridge at Athletes Village, we watched a fire performance by M. Pyress Flame, accompanied by the drummers (including me!). The slow shutter on my camera got a couple of fun shots of the twirling fire sticks: We ended up at the Creekside Community Rec Centre, where there was some very bizarre music playing while the kids did art projects with pine cones and sticks. We had a little hot chocolate. Perfect. Yes, all in all, a blissful way to spend the evening of the Solstice.
It’s a new season. Bears might be settling into their hibernation, and I’m just getting ready to come out of mine.