Halcyon Days

Kingfisher

My ears threatened to go on strike.  We almost starved because I couldn’t stand to go into stores.  Within ten minutes, in one shop, I heard the song “Santa On The Sand”, and then “Christmas in Hawaii.”

We have entered the Festival of Conspicuous Consumption – otherwise known as the Christmas Season.  It began in November, right after Black Friday, a vile American ritual which has oozed into Canada like toxic waste.  It has even floated across the Atlantic like an oil spill, to infest the U.K.

This is the time of year when even the Good Christians forget the Christ Child, and enter into the frenzy of Too Much – too much food, drink, cooking, buying, spending, wrapping, visiting, travelling, and stress.

I was researching the word halcyon, when I came upon the term ‘Halcyon Days’.  There once (allegedly) was a minor Greek goddess, Alcidine, whose name has come down to us as Halcyon.  She fell in love with a minor god, and they shacked up together.  They were enjoying immortal life, and having so much fun, that they compared themselves to Zeus and Hera.

Zeus, whose Grumpy-R-Us franchise I inherited, threw a giant snit-fit.  He huffed and he puffed, and he blew up a powerful storm, and a huge wave crashed onto her lover and drowned him.  When she saw his dead body in the surf, she threw herself into the waves and also drowned.

Some of the other gods felt sorry for them.  Zeus’ magic could not be reversed, but it could be modified.  They were brought back as birds – kingfishers.  The modern scientific name for kingfishers is Alcidines.  The ocean kingfisher builds a little raft of a nest, safe from most predators because it floats upon the waters like Moses’ Magical Basket.

Aeolus was the god who controlled the winds and storms – except when Zeus used them to bump somebody off.  Because kingfishers breed and brood about the winter solstice, he promised two weeks of calm waters, so that the eggs would safely have time to hatch – one week before the solstice, and one week after – the Halcyon Days.

Inspired by this tale, I went into my back yard, and found a small nest-building-type stick that my new pair of Scottie Terrier puppies had wrenched off a shrub.  I brought it into the house, and jammed it into a bowl of semi-precious gemstones.  I printed off the photo above, cut out the outline, and hung it from the twig.

I have no giant, overstated Christmas tree that takes me three days to assemble and decorate, and another three days to put away.  It’s just a little tribute to peace and quiet, something which I feel many of us need during this frenetic time.  Give it a try.  You don’t have to believe in, or worship Greek gods – or any God – you just have to believe that you deserve a couple of weeks of tranquility, “while all about you are losing theirs.”  Peace be unto you – and peace on the rest of the idiots, too.  😉

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12 thoughts on “Halcyon Days

  1. 1jaded1 says:

    My ears are blessed because I never heard the titles you mentioned. Wake me up when December ends. Yes to peace and quiet.

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    • Archon's Den says:

      I never had either, and if I never hear them again, it’ll be three days too soon. One local radio station went to “All Christmas – All The Time” on December 1. My own favorite rock station finally caved today. Every third song a Christmas one. No radio until next Wednesday. Silence, blessed silence! If I hear ‘Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer’ one more time, granny ain’t gonna be the only one covered in blood. 😉 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve scaled back our Christmas celebrations dramatically over the years and have enjoyed it immensely. Less is more!

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  3. We have no Christmas decorations these days. I gave everything to my daughters. If I want to see an overabundance of Christmas cheer, I can go to any of their houses. Personally, I find my house more peaceful.

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  4. Dale says:

    I looked at my boxes today. Then left them in the basement. I may or may not put up a garland.
    Course the house is for sale so really, who needs the extra sh*t?

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    • Archon's Den says:

      Good plan – as long as you don’t get a new Blog address too.
      Do you have plans yet, where you’re moving to? Same suburb? Somewhere else Montreal-ish? Enquiring minds want to know. 😕

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        Nah… I’m sticking with this blog address!
        BTW… boxes still untouched. Maybe tomorrow
        I would like to move to a small bungalow, none of this two-storey crap. With small rooms for the boys so they feel uncomfortable quicker and move out. Probably in the same suburb. I’m a Boucherville girl.

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      • Archon's Den says:

        😈 Good plan with the small rooms – although it might not work out. We gave the son the tiniest room, and he’s still living with us…. at 47. He could have married anyone he pleased – but, apparently he didn’t please anyone. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        Do NOT, I repeat, DO NOT tell me that!! Actually, it’s probably all your fault he’s still with you…

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