I Break For Turtles

Earlier today I helped a turtle cross a busy divided highway near me. I’m hoping and praying it will be okay, since it had been sideswiped by a car by the time I reached it. (And unfortunately to the best of my knowledge and a google search there’s not anywhere nearby that treats injured wildlife.)

But I’m hopeful. It was quite a large, strong turtle and while the very rear edge of the shell was sheared off, it was only a little (1/8 inch or less) and there was only one tiny cracked place (at the leading edge of the strike) where there was even any bleeding—and I’ve seen a lot of turtles with shell scars easily two to three times that size that healed. And its tail and back feet looked intact and unharmed. It was still moving and very alert and the energies/aura I picked up seemed more confused and startled than hurt.

I left it in some cool underbrush on the far side of the highway, wrapped in healing energy and with a lot of prayers and I’m hoping for the best.

So this is a friendly summer PSA to watch out for our shelled friends in your travels! In some mythologies, all the world is carried on the back of a giant turtle/tortoise. And turtles are sacred to the Kemetic (Egyptian) God Set. But more importantly, they’re awesome, terrific, intelligent, loving critters! ❤ So watch your tires and save a turtle!

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I love turtles and I have all my life so I’m going to break character here a little with some advice. If you decide to help a turtle cross the road this, or any other summer (yay!), then please:

1) Be safe yourself and make sure neither you nor your vehicle endanger anyone.

2) Always lift a turtle by the edges of the shell, avoiding any potentially damaged areas you see—and if you have wildlife aid services in your area, take advantage of their services if a turtle is hurt—and *never, ever* handle by the tail or limbs as that can seriously injure them.

3) Always place them on the side of the road they’re facing—it can be tempting to put them on whatever side they’re closer to, but turtles know where they’re going and can be stubborn and there’s every chance that if you move them to the wrong side that they’ll try again and be even more in danger for having further to go after you leave.

4) Try to keep the turtle relatively close to the ground during your transport to safety, terrain and circumstances permitting, especially if it’s kicking or struggling at all. They’re strong and if they kick free then they won’t be the fall to the ground.

5) Large, long-tailed turtles, usually with particularly ridged shells, might be snapping turtles if you’re within their range (generally Eastern to upper Midwestern US). There’s a lot of online resources about helping/interacting with them safely, but it’s usually best not to handle or lift them—because they’re named that way for a reason—and instead to push or nudge them from behind with a non-sharp object that keeps them moving but no one gets hurt.

6) Never relocate a turtle to another area or region, even one that seems “safer” to you. Turtles, like many animals, have territories and they often try to return home or might even experience trauma and just stop eating when they can’t see a way back.

7) Make you wash up after handling a turtle as they can potentially carry some diseases that are communicable both to humans and to some pets, so be sure to soap it up and keep everyone healthy.

(***Please note: The above is for land and freshwater turtles only. If you’re in an area that’s home to sea turtles or any endangered turtle/tortoise species, please refer to local resources in order to be sure you’re doing what’s best for them.)

Storm Water

It stormed here last night. We’ve had several rainy evenings this week, but this was an especially lovely rain.

(What do I expect after writing for Tefnut yesterday, right? 😉 It’s kind of A Thing. Two summers ago when I was making the statues for my Neteru altar it was very dry…but every day that I worked on Her statue, it unexpectedly rained when it wasn’t forecasted. Since then, any time we really needed the rain I could handle her statue and/or light incense before it and every time it’s rained within 72 hours and all but once or twice before nightfall.)

Unlike the previous rains, there was even some thunder and lightning and lots of wind this time. It’s exactly the sort of storm that’s my favorite, so I sat outside on the porch with it for a few hours.

And unexpectedly, I felt this overwhelming nudge to collect some of the rainwater. I’ve never collected storm water like this…and honestly I’m not really sure why or what I’m supposed to do with it. For now I’ve just sealed it up in a special jar and I guess I’ll find out. 🙂

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Dear Tefnut

I feel inspired today to write this short poem of praise:

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Hail Great Tefnut

Goddess of Moisture

Humidity, Dew, and Rain

For truly you have blessed

Beyond measure or reason

This land, my mortal home

Seriously, Tefnut should be recognized as a patron Goddess of the Southeastern US–or at least of our weather anyway. Haha 😛 😉

 

New Tarot Deck

I thought I wasn’t going to buy any more tarot or oracle decks. After all, I have *so* many already—both that I’ve picked out myself and from a friend who was leaving polytheism/paganism and I bought out all her stuff just to keep it out of a landfill somewhere—and honestly, I’m so attached to my favorite handful that I never use most of them.

Then I saw a review (and more importantly, pictures!) of The Good Tarot by Colette Baron-Reid and that intention flew right out the window.

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I’ve been starting to get to know it the last couple of weeks and it’s lovely. The art is just gorgeous, sort of old-photo-blurry fantasy style. And it has a bit more diversity than a lot of my elven/Fae/Faery decks, which I’m really excited about (one of my others has almost all the male characters very obviously drawn from either Legolas or Thranduil, so they all look exactly the same…which is super annoying). And the suits are Water, Air, Fire, and Earth and I have a real weakness for elemental and seasonal themed decks.

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Honestly, though, as much as I loved all of those above things about this deck, the art of this one card “Messenger of Fire” is really why I bought it.

This card is the closest artwork that I’ve ever seen to what astral!me looks like. (Yes, I collect images that remind me of places and people in the Otherworlds…both art versions and real-life “if I had to make it all a movie” versions as well. 😛 ) Not perfect, but close enough to feel a little shocking when I saw the picture the first time. There’s even a ritual Out There that requires me to wear a crown of candles a bit like this. So it felt like a sign. 🙂

So far the only thing I’m not thrilled with is the book. It’s all vague affirmation-type stuff and—in my opinion—total crap. I mostly use my cards for communication and it doesn’t work if every single card is a variation on “you rock, Spirit’s got you covered, don’t worry, you can manifest anything, the Universe loves you, etc.” *sigh*

I reach a place with all my favorite decks where I just know the cards intuitively and don’t look at the book anymore, but it’s usually an organic process from doing so many readings with them. And since most of my decks are very nonstandard, the book usually helps me get started and understand any unique symbolism. This one I’m basically starting from nothing and having to sit and meditate with each card and go from there.

Maybe this is the next step in my tarot studies? It’s definitely forcing me to embrace a new level of trust in my own intuition and understanding.

Look!

Check out what came in the mail: Aegishjálmr and Vegvísir window decals for my car! Yay, they’re so lovely. 🙂

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And then I also got this tiny rune one as a free gift. So for the first time in ten months or something like that I’m breaking out my rune books to remember what it means. Maybe a sign of some kind? Hmmm…

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