Friday, October 11, 2013

Of Apple Festivals And Divinations

I went to the Apple Festival in Darlington, MD a couple of days ago. It's a small festival, it's only a street long, but it's cute and fun.

And packed!

There's not too much to do if you're not a kid. They had a hayride that went in a circle around a field. There was scare crow making. There's also a couple of musicians that play some sort of country and a pie contest that's really early which I missed. I'm not sure you can attend it if you're not a contestant though. I mostly go for the vendors anyway, and to get out of the house.

When we first walked in there was this awesome Jack Sparrow made out of stained glass.

Glass by Michelle Coomes O'Brien
If I had the 150 dollars it was asking for I would have bought that up in a heart beat. Half a heart beat even. The seller also had these little cuties.
Utz Girl and Natty Boh
My sister asked why Natty was crying. I said it was because the Utz Girl refused his wedding proposal. My friend said it was because the Ravens lost some game...I don't follow football.
Moving along, we went by the booth for the Maryland Fairy Festival and met this awesome guy.
He was really nice. We also kept bumping into him throughout the festival. Stalker, or just really adept at fairy magic? Hmmm...
My sister really wants to go and so do I, so hopefully come May of next year I'll have another blog festival post with pictures and videos to do.
I stopped by the booth of Namasaki Kawaii Ai and, because I can't get enough shit for my hair and head, I bought this really cute cat ear headband.
Pay no attention to my wonky looking eyes. I'm just looking at the camera.
In case you can't see clearly, they have little rhinestones on them and are lined in fabric. I'm so glad I found them. I saw a bunch at Otakon that were metal with diamonds embedded but they were all gold and I really don't like gold. She also sold these hand made dish scrubbies.

And these really cute little plushies.

Not only did I have to refrain from spending my limited money on them, but I also had to refrain from hugging them before leaving. They're just too cute, especially the ones with the little fangs.

I did however indulge my inner day drinker and bought this little key chain flask from Lithia's Creations.

Someone tell Jack that this is where the rum has gone.
I also bought this huge bag of loose leaf Japanese cherry blossom tea from Castle Creek Farms. I love everything they make, especially their soaps. The tea has a mild flowery (well..yeah, duh) and kind of bitter taste to it. I like it. I also love the way it smells.

And I especially like loose leaf tea because of the tea readings you can do with them (oh look at that segue that I'm so crappy at!).

I really like divination. I do readings for my friends sometimes if they request as I like the practice, but I usually use it as a form of meditation or introspection. Let's not forget just plain fun too. There's so many ways to go about divining. Tea leaves, palm readings, tarot. Those are the big ones people know about, but there's so many more ways. Like with apples for example.

As a symbol of love, apples are used mainly for love divination to find out the initials or identity of your future love/affair/spouse/whatever.  One of the ways to do so is to take an apple and hold the stem in one hand while holding the apple in the other. As you twist the stem recite the alphabet with each turn. Whatever letter the stem comes off on is supposed to be the initial of your future significant other's first name.

Another way is to take  an apple and peel the skin in one unbroken strip. You throw the skin over your shoulder and make sure your dog doesn't try to eat it so you can see what letter it took the shape of.

Hey! Get away from my future love's name!
I'm not sure if this was supposed to be a J with the way it was curled, or an I because it came apart and the one piece is supposed to be the dot. Meh, such is divination sometimes.

There is also a divination that says to eat an apple on Halloween while looking into a mirror to see the face of your future love. Well it's not Halloween yet, and I didn't feel like getting the mirror from the wall, so I opted to eat my apple while I waited for my tea leaves to steep.

Reading tea leaves, much like the tarot and crystal ball types of divination, is all about interpretation. Symbols can be interpreted in many ways which is something I sometimes get confused on. There's the usual meanings and what they symbolize, but there's also the personal meaning and what they mean to you. For example, I recently bought a small crystal ball and was looking at it and playing with it letting my thoughts drift in and out, when I saw the image of a barn owl. Then a week or so ago I was doing one of my little late night drives. I saw two eyes peeping from the edge of the road up ahead. I slowed down in case it was a little fox or rabbit and as I drove by an owl flew away from the road. Symbolism aside it was very neat to see. I don't usually see owls in Baltimore.

Now what does that all mean? Well I'm still wondering about it. You see owls can stand for different things both bad and good. They can stand for insight, prophecy, healing, and wisdom, among other things. But it is also symbolic of Satan, doom, and death. Especially the barn owl. However when I saw the owl in the crystal ball I didn't have a sense of foreboding, just peace. So as you see interpretation is a tricky thing.

To read tea leaves you should optimally use a wide cup as it will allow you to see the leaves clearly. I had to learn the hard way that a cups worth of tea is sufficient in reading leaves. Too much and results can be inconclusive because they will all lump together. Also the cherry blossom tea leaves were a bit too big.

Or perhaps I just used too much.

I had to wind up tearing open a tea bag. One tea bag is fine. It took me the equivalent of 5 cups of tea to figure this out. ...The things my bladder and I go through for this blog.

After your tea has cooled, you hold the cup in your non dominant hand and drink. You should be using this time to focus on your question if you have a specific question, or clearing your thoughts. If you're wondering how to keep from drinking the leaves...well you kind of don't. Most of the leaves settle at the bottom of the cup anyway so it doesn't matter. I usually grip the rim of the cup gently with my teeth and keep my upper lip close to the glass so very little actually gets in my mouth.

Drink all the tea except for a tiny sip's worth. Then, in a clockwise fashion, you swish the leaves around three times. Carefully, turn the cup over a saucer and leave it for a minute or so to allow the excess tea to drain before turning it back over.

There are a few ways I've heard of to read the leaves. One is from present to future. You start from the top near the handle, then go down and clockwise. The cup is sectioned into three sections. Rim, middle, and base. The closer things are to the rim, the more immediate they are happening and vice verse. Reading this way, the base also represents the final outcome of the question or problem. The handle represents the querent and home, which is why you start there.

However, I've read that some people use the base as the past. The further towards the base it is the further in the past. Middle is present and rim is future. The closer things are to the handle the more quick they are to happen, basically your immediate future. Images right under the handle are for the immediate future as well.

Since I was aiming for a general past, present, future reading and didn't have any sort of question in mind, I chose to use the second method.

Right under the handle I noticed a running rabbit and what reminded me of a fisherman.

Probably should have circled this.

I have no clue if you can see that but it's those two clumps at the top.

I didn't get any specific feeling from the rabbit so I went with the normal tea reading interpretation as a symbol for the need for bravery. The fisherman I felt as a symbol of abundance and prosperity. And as I had plans to go to a casino the night before Halloween, I'm really hoping that's true.

Going clockwise I saw what looked to me like a coffin in the middle bottom of the cup.

I circled it in black for you.
Some might think that cause for alarm, but I didn't feel any ill omen from it. It was in the near past portion of the cup so all it did was remind me of my cousin's funeral that I attended about two months ago.
Near the rim a little ways away from the coffin there was a star and mouse behind what looked to me like a big bull. Across from the bull were three birds with two flying south and one flying north out of the cup.
The bull and associated symbols are somewhat sloppily circled in red, while the birds are neatly in purple.
I'm also going to have to take time out of this interpretive blogging to apologize for all the shitty camera angles.
Stars mean health and happiness in tea reading but I also felt it meant success. The mouse I took to mean timidity. In tea reading it is normally interpreted as theft. The bull I took to mean strength, but a strong stubbornness as well. The birds across from the bull felt like they were symbolic of change, a parting from how things are at the present time, since one is leaving the other two.
Now, taking all of those symbols together, it could be interpreted that health, happiness, and success lies in my future, though my own stubbornness (and I can be very stubborn) and timidity to change can steal away my chances at success.
And of course you can see from the picture above that at the bottom there is a heart in the distant past portion. It is ill formed and blobby. The line also looks broken by the bundle of tea leaves to the left. To me it is reminiscent of my ex from a couple years back, which was my first huge break up that helped cause a lot of problems in both my financial and emotional states.
I didn't see any other symbols that leapt out at me, so the tea reading ends here. Perhaps you see something I didn't despite the crappy camera angles?

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing about the tea leaves - totally going to try it myself today! x


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