As the weeks rolled by, the anticipation grew. A couple of days before the long weekend, I received a group email from Cliff. He wanted to know who was coming or not to his place so he could make the necessary arrangements. I was the only one who responded. Was that a sign of things to come??
I took an early bus ride from the city to arrive around noon at part of my destination. I was picked up by Cliff & his daughter, Natalia. After running a few errands, we went to a cute Pagan stored in New Glasgow, The White Lotus. There I found some interesting herbal teas (Faery , Vervain, Oolong & Jamaican Spice), a few more crystals for my ever-growing collection, and a Goddess figurine (I can never have enough of Her). I also got a small hand-carved stone owl, my totem animal.
We took the scenic route back to Twa Corbies Hollow. I hoping to meet others that were also invited to come. Now, for those of you who know me well, I am quite a talker, but I got the case of the shyness (hard to believe, I know) I listened to Cliff talk to me about his horses, Aval, Acorn & Sidhe Bheg. Then, I saw them as we rounded the curve in the road approaching the Hollow. Wow, they're huge!! That was my first thought As we pulled up the driveway, I could see a black dog running happily towards the truck, I got a bit nervous, as my old fear of dogs came back to me. But this dog was a playful boy who wanted to play stick. he jumped up at me & proceeded to goober up my hand with dog kisses.
I was shown the gardens, where Lady Daphne & Ariel were working on making rows for planting. I saw Claire the cow grazing in the field nearby. She's not very social for a cow. After putting my backpack up in my room, I went outside & helped (as best as I could) with whatever work they needed me to do. Natalia took me down to the barn where I met the horses close up. Aval & Acorn were the gentle giants, I fell in love with them at first sight. Sidhe Bheg, what can I say about her?? If she were human, she would be the diva of all divas. Natalia warned me that she likes to nip people, so my hands stayed in my jacket pockets, nice & safe.
After a quick lunch, we got back to work. There was no word from anyone else who were supposed to be coming for the workshop. I had a feeling that I was the only one. After playing stick with Willowisp, Cliff got Sidhe Bheg ready to go for a carriage ride, while his oldest daughter, Ariel cooked supper. Daphne, Natalia, Cliff & myself took a long winding ride through the countryside. We saw a few deer, lots of apple trees and houses with stars on them (is this a trend or are they wannabe witches?). When we arrived back to the Hollow, no one had called or showed up for the workshop. Their loss was my gain, as I was thoroughly enjoying my time. After eating a hearty potato cauliflower soup with bread & homemade cheese, we watched the Simpson's episode where Lisa meets with the Wiccans.
The next morning, after a restful sleep, I was awaken by a somewhat large furry being in bed with me, licking my hair. That could only mean one thing, my new playfriend, Willowisp was with me. I got dressed and headed downstairs to see what was on the plan for today...planting in the garden. I got to plant parsnips, get eaten alive by blackflies (still recovering from them) in spite of wearing long sleeves, bug repellent and no deodorant. They saw me as their "all you can eat buffet" and they feasted. I also went & visited with the horses, saw the goats and played stick with Willowisp. Ariel & I also pruned the apple tree next to the house. For being a city girl, I think I did alright...going without makeup, hair not done and not caring how dirty I got. I was having a blast!!
I ate homemade cheeses, organic food, drank mead for the first time (yum!), tried new things, watched a few movies, gardened, learned new things about myself I really didn't know. I didn't get to ride a horse, but maybe on my next visit I will. I even tried...miserably...archer
I would write more, but my calamine lotion needs to be reapplied, as my arms are raw from the scratching. All in all, I had a wonderful time & I can't wait to go back to the Hollow very soon. My hosts were the best!! I can always come back in time to harvest my parsnips...