Well, I have been here for over a month now. I have had three tests of vet school and rocked them all out like a champ (I know, I know you are not here to hear about a vet student, but I have to brag where I can while I can). I have been here for two full moons, and how magical they were. Tonight, I would like to talk about what I have been up to for the past month aside from studying my ass off. I thought it was going to be extremely hard to keep up with my craft while in vet school, but as of yet I have managed to keep a few small aspects in my daily life and I have had the time for full moon celebrations too.
In my last post I talked about adjusting to a new place. I have adjusted quite well, but some things here take their time. Back home, I met quite a few of the nature spirits who were more than willing for a chat and some offering, but here, it would seem that everything runs on “island time.” I have yet to meet any local spirits despite my attempts. I am not frustrated however. I know that I have to be patient and I am more than willing to be. I do terribly miss the rattle that I had to leave behind. But I left that in the care of someone special who I know will take good care of her. I do miss late nights sitting in the moon and starlight rattling away to watch the spirits dance.
I seem to have lost a connection with the Horned God. I have not heard anything from him since being stateside. Again, I am not frustrated. This is the Caribbean, the spirits are very different. I leave offerings to him anyway when I perform my rites, and it stays at that. I did not have room in my luggage for the plaque that I made to him, which is very sad, but what is two years to a deity such as him.
In losing Cernunnos, I seem to have gained another major connection. Grandmother Ocean has captivated me since I flew south into hurricane Isaac. My friend and I were stuck in Miami airport until the storm cleared up, and we spent a night in the Keys until we got another flight. When the rain broke for a bit I went out and sat on a dock and looked out over the ocean. The wind was fierce and created awesome currents in the water. I sat and dangled my feet above the water and just listened. It was a very cleansing experience. Once I got to the island, I only grew more in love. I can see the Caribbean Sea from my window and there is a beautiful rocky beach within a 5 minute walk. One day I was doing a little water meditation to cleanse away negativity while I was swimming and the name Yemaya came to my lips. Since then, I have referred to Grandmother Ocean as Yemaya. I know very little about the Orisha named Yemaya, but I am continuing research in what little free time I possess. It just seems to fit, so now I honor Yemaya daily and I connected well with her on this past full moon. Whenever I am stressed and plan to skip something pagan, I see Grandmother Ocean and she reminds me of the magic in my life and how important it is to me and my wellbeing. She is a constant reminder to stay strong and carry on. My love affair with the sea shall continue for the rest of my life, I suspect.
This past full moon, I waited until she was full overhead and then I packed a little bag and walked down to the campus beach. The night was as magical as they get. The moon was so bright I did not need a light or candle. The sky was clear above me, but out over the ocean a thunderstorm raged, throwing lightning down into the sea. It sent shivers down my spine. The beach is perfect for witchery, given that It is completely secluded and there is a slightly treacherous hike down to it, and you can always tell if someone is coming. I hiked down in pitch black as the forest blocked out all moonlight. When I got there I was again completely captivated by the ocean. I hopped down onto the rocks and perched myself on a large volcanic boulder right near the water. I breathed in the salty scent of the ocean and I was at peace. I mediated a bit, feeling the spray and wishing that I had a drum or a rattle to play for Yemaya. I tried to light a candle, but it blew out three times in a row and I decided it was not necessary. I gave an offering to correspond with my daily prayer (I shall discuss this in another post), and then left an offering to Yemaya herself. I spent a good hour just sitting on the beach, feeling the waves, watching the lightning and moonlight dance on the water. This was possibly the most magical full moon I have spent to date. I can’t wait for the next full moon (about Halloween time), when I can hike down to that beach and revel in the beauty.
So that is what this pagan is up to in the Caribbean. I want to learn a lot more about local craft, but I have no idea where to start. I know that obeah is the Afro-Caribbean voodoo of sorts, but all I know is what I have read on the internets, and we all know how trustworthy that is. I would love to meet a local who could at least teach me about the native plants and even local folk magic, but I do not know how to go about doing that. If anyone out there is knowledgeable about Caribbean lore or magic and doesn’t mind sharing some things I would love to learn all that I can.
Thanks for listening to my ramble.