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Retreat to Oak, Ash, Thorn and Bone

There is no time like pagan time. Seconds are measured by the whirr of the cicadas, hours by the passage of the sun, and day and night by the hooting of owls and the cries of herons. With no tasks except to look up and see Orion wheeling overhead, and his faithful dog-star Sirius racing behind, or to plunge hand and luck into the creek, to see what fossils can be found.

But of course, there was a larger goal at hand, one which dovetailed nicely with these pleasures. As Abelina's Grove works towards membership as a Coven in our local Covenant of the Goddess chapter, representatives are obligated to attend Everglades Moon Local Council events so their members can get to know us better before they cast the deciding vote at the end of the application process.

Opal Luna, Karl the Drum Guy, and Birch Von Baum attended the retreat this weekend, tator tot pizza and cake in hand, and had a grand time. But this blog post is not about them. It's about us.

Lady F's squad of quarter animals,

Panther: (in the north, and even closer to the wild panthers of Western Florida)

Alligator: (now in the East!) (Western Florida)

Manatee (now in the West) (Western Florida)

And of course, Key Deer, still watching over the South

The four of us started the weekend with a short ritual under a tree near the creek. Alligator, Panther, and Manatee were all for taking a swim, but Key Deer said definitely not. So Key Deer stayed up in the high and dry near the trees while Gator, Manatee, and Panther snuck off for a little fossil hunting. You wouldn't believe how many ancient shark teeth are in the creek.

Alligator said he he remembered those sharks. The rest of us are pretty sure he's pulling our tails on that one - this part of Florida used to be shallow ocean back in those days, not alligator territory.

The next morning we persuaded Birch and Alba to let us tag along for the breakfast and meet some of the members of the local Covenant of the Goddess for ourselves. They were suitably admiring of how magnificent and beautiful we were, then we were off on the highlight of the trip - a hike through Lady Florida's Cypress Head. Alligator and Panther were especially excited - this is their kind of territory. Even Key Deer admired the many Live Oaks and Cypress Knees.

Birch helped Panther and Key Deer explore the view from a Cypress Knee.

Manatee tagged along with Karl the Drum Guy.

Alligator kisses. CHOMP CHOMP

But we were all very excited to see the Florida Butterfly Orchid - what a sight! Ok, it wasn't in bloom, but we could imagine.

The humans were trying to find some oak, ash and thorn for Opal Luna's upcoming class, so we made sure to gather some for them. Then we all sang the Oak Ash and Thorn song together. You can find the full version on our Private Facebook Group and coming soon to YouTube!

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