• Tag Archives Delos
  • Bee Diary: Hive Inspections

    Beltane                                                    Waxing Garlic Moon

    Colony #1:  This is the colony in which my queen release went well.  She’s been busy.  The second hive box, on only a week, has all the brood frames with brood, some full, some partial, so I went ahead and added another hive box.  This is the colony I’m going to keep as a parent colony for next spring.  I’ve decided I want to manage the other two for maximum honey and then let them die out in the fall.

    Colony #2:  The first of the one’s where the queen got to her job a week late because I didn’t handle the release well. (at least I didn’t kill her, which I did last year)  This colony seems to be putting a lot of honey in the two supers I added in place of a second hive box.  Not sure what that means, but it for sure means we’re not ready for another set of supers quite yet.

    Colony #3:  The second late queened colony.  This colony has brood in the bottom of the two honey supers I added last week, and seems to be storing honey in the top one.  Again, I don’t know what this means, but this one is not ready for another two supers yet either.  I plan to check both of them mid-week, just in case they accelerate the brood production process.

    Once again, these bees are placid, friendly, and diligent.  Great colleagues in our life here.  I feel lucky to have them.

    Artemis, our patron goddess, has several images, as do most of the Greek pantheon, but this one always causes some consternation.  What’s with all those blobs on her chest?  Though a common explanation suggests they are breasts, symbolizing her role as a fertility goddess, some scholarship suggests they may instead be bull’s testicles or gourds, both also potent symbols of fertility in Asia.

    I saw this statue in a museum near the ancient city of Ephesus.  From nearby it was also possible to see the one remaining pillar from her great temple, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.  Now, it looks bereft, a lone monument in a not too well tended field.

    On the same trip Kate and I went to Delos, the site of the Delian Leagues treasury during the glory days of Greece.  Artemis and her brother Apollo were born on this island. It’s a small, uninspiring rocky island, but it has a storied past that makes it more than repay a visit.

  • A Life in Ruins: Part II

    Fall                                    Waning Back to School Moon

    When I visited Angkor in 2005, I wrote a piece for my Pilgrimage series entitled, A Life in Ruins.  Ephesus, Delphi, Delos,Rome. Pompeii, numerous civil war battlefields and Attuthya are among the many ruins I’ve visited, trying to piece together from blocks of stone, information plaques and Blue Guides their meaning and significance. At Knossos I wondered what it felt like to be in the labyrinth of rooms that made up what entered legend as the habitation of the Minotaur.  At Delos I imagined what the birth of Apollo and Diana was like.

    Given that history, amazing is an understatement when I discovered my actual life had become a site with ruins, not one, but many.  In my hometown of Alexandria the first factory in which I2010-10-02_0396 worked, Johns-Manville has nothing left but concrete coated pillars and a loading dock.  I worked as a receiving clerk the summer I was there, so I knew exactly what went on there when the trains loaded with coak and limestone rolled onto the factory grounds.

    That was the first, but far from the last.  The old High School, my middle school, gone.  Tomlinson, my first elementary school. Gone.  Most of the businesses of my youth, abandoned shells.  This is only in Alex.  In Anderson the mighty General Motors Guide  Lamp and Delco Remy, employers once of 25,000, gone.  Parking lots and concrete factory pads covering thousands of square feet and fenced in with tall chain link are all that remains.

    If we had a magic button we could push, one that would light up the home’s lost among those 25,000, we would have a better estimate of the lives ruined along with these structures.  These are the missing elements at Ephesus, Rome, Delos.  What about the lives of the priests, the grounds keepers, the cooks, the sailors?  Like members of my class and their parents forces beyond their control eliminated the places where they earned their livings.  Places made sacred by the holy work of labor.  So much desecration.

    These factories, these shops, these shuttered houses, these abandoned people are the friends and family with which I spent the weekend, real people, not statistics.  Never did I think that the mighty flood of cars bearing workers on Highway 9, no absurdly named Highway of Vice Presidents, would dry up.  Never did I think that the vibrant small town of my youth with its mens store, its womens store, two variety stores, two pharmacies, a bakery, two theatres, bars and banks and service stations would fade away only to be replaced by dollar stores and wholesale outlets.

    So this weekend, an affair of the heart most of all, a reconnecting with those who lived then, only underscores the pain.  I will never visit a new ruin again with the same detached attitude.  Real people lived there;  real people suffered.

  • Each Time I Go To Sleep

    Spring                   Waning Seed Moon

    I have been playing a game before I go to sleep.  It soothes me, helps me relax.

    It began when I wondered what my five favorite movies were.  Seventh Seal jumped into my mind immediately.  2001:  A Space Odyssey.  The Day The Earth Stood Still. (1951)  Invasion of the Body Snatchers. (1956)  Seven Samurai.  Sleep would come because I knew this was not the list, it was a list, a list I could come up at night as I drifted off to sleep.

    Later, five novels:  Glass Bead Game.  The Trial.  Steppenwolf.  Moby Dick.  Asimov’s Foundation Trilogy.

    Five favorite paintings at the MIA: Goya’s Dr. Arrieta, the Bonnard, the virgin by the master of the mille fleurs, Poet by A Waterfall,  The Cardinal.  again, a list, not the list.

    Five pieces of music:  Unanswered Questions by Ives, Messaein’s symphony for the end of time, Coltrane’s A Train,  Drift Away.    definitely a list, not the list.

    Five favorite classical sites I’ve visited:  Ephesus, Delphi, Delos, Angkor, Conwy castle in Conwy, Wales.

    So on.  Works for me.