The ancient Celtic rite of spring, welcoming the return of the fertility to the land and the easy availability of outdoor drinking for the summer. True to course it pissed down! And this year we didn’t have the usual Beltane Fire Festival on Calton Hill because Edinburgh City Council are a bunch of eejits and screwed it all up over costs. They are more than happy to spend huge amounts of the local taxpayer’s cash on events for the tourists but not on the people who actually live here (and pay their bloody wages). Yes, the modern version may not be ‘historically accurate’ (but then this goes back to way before the Romans ever came here so no-one knows exactly what happened at the ceremony) but it is enormous fun. Fire jugglers, the Green Man, several Red Men, a May Queen, sprites, dancers, drummers, drink, drugs, snogging and laughter – it certainly has the spirit of the old pagan festival. What do you mean, how do I know? Because I’m Celtic, so there :-)! We know these things and if anyone disagrees they can chew on an Irn Bru bottle. Still, a happy Beltane to you all and may the Earth Goddess or the deity of your choice spread peaceful blessings on you as the world rotates into summer.
Passed the old cemetery nearby a couple of evenings ago and the huge, gnarled old tree (the one with the bat in it) which hangs right over the wall is slowly awakening from it’s winter slumber (just in time for the Beltane). It’s an amazing old tree, fantastically twisted, branches reaching out over the wall to caress the roof of passing double decker buses. Green is reappearing as it comes back to life for another year, like seeing an old friend again.Took all of this rebirth of the land thing to mean one of two things: 1) I must ride forth and find the Holy Grail. Onc Arthur has drunk from it the land and he will be reborn. Fussy bugger, why he couldn’t just have a decent dram… 2) I should use my list vote for the Scottish parliament to vote for the Greens. Discharged my civic and demcoratic duty. Not overly mad on the election system, but as Matthew observes, you have to use what voice you have. He’s obviously on his poitical high horse today (anything to avoid studying), you should have a look.My political high horse is eating hay as we speak, so I had to use my mountain bike instead. It doesn’t look as good, but it doesn’t crap all over the road either (although that may be a way of getting back at idiot drivers).