Wednesday, September 1, 2010

time of the flying fox

Today is the First Day of Spring.

but did you know…?

It is actually, and also, and around about, the season of

Ngoonungi - Murrai'yunggory


the Time of the Flying Fox


It is:

"The time of the gathering of the flying foxes. A magical time of the year when the flying foxes gather in the darkening skies over D'harawal Lands. They come in from the north-east, the north, the north-west and the west, and swirl over the Sydney area in a wonderful, sky-dancing display just after sunset, before setting off for the night-time feeding grounds to the south. But it is also a very important ceremonial time for the D'harawals, which begins with the appearance of the splashes of the bright red Miwa Gawaian (Telopea speciosissima) in the bushland."

(Aust Govt: Indigenous Weather Knowledge)

It is "Ngoonungi, Time of the Flying Fox: [when] The waratah and many other flowers bloom and flying foxes gather. [It is the] mating season of many smaller marsupials. Shellfish form a large part of the diet. As the whales migrate down the coast with their calves, important ceremonies are held to wish them well."

from Chookie's Backyard

And it is: "the…time when ‘the buds of the waratah swell and redden’. [Note that] The D’harawal annual cycle is not set rigidly in time, but responds to triggers in the environment."

from an interview by Kelly Royds with Frances Bodkin, author/compiler of D'harawal Seasons and Climate Cycles

Frances Bodkin is a "botanical author, teacher and traditional storyteller at Mount Annan Botanic Gardens. Bodkin is a traditional D'harawal Aboriginal descendant and one of the last people in Sydney to inherit tens of thousands of years of weather wisdom." She has written an important book; it looks fascinating and I'm going to find it and read it. For more reading, here's an article about Bodkin, and on Indigenous Seasons.


Just thought I'd commemorate this First day with a bit of thinking and exploring and discovering.

Hello September :)


Today was also the beginning of feeling hopeful.

Today I made an appointment with a new counsellor, seeing as mine has gone overseas. (What, I don't see her for a year and a half, and she goes away without telling me??).

This new woman said the soonest she could see me was in two weeks time (which seemed, at that moment, to be a Very. Long. Time). Two hours later, she rang back to say, actually, she could fit me in tomorrow.

Today, I heard a frog ribbiting in our back yard today, beside our fishpond.

Today, I didn't need to wear a dozen layers to walk the dog with the kids.

The dog rolled blissfully in a pool of dust then shook it off like he'd just had a bath.

Today, the sun shone.

I made a risotto for dinner that rocked even more than the last risotto I made.

I took my herbs from my naturopath and began reading a book about finding happiness.

And my sister called.

Today, the kids told Dad that we did English, Maths, walked the dog and even did Science.

And then my daughter said:

"And Mum was happy."

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