Yesterday's shrine-tending was odd and incomplete. It was good, don't get me wrong. My partners (Glaux and Iron Dragon) and I were joined by another member of Our Haven to work on Aphrodite's shrine and maintain the Great Rite Spiral in which the shrine sits. We did as much as we could possibly do with the materials and folks who were there, but we were missing two people (one of whom had agreed to bring the statue and a weed-eater) and arbor-building materials from a third.
So, the very bright up-side is that we weeded the entire area, laid gardening fabric in the most needed areas, and placed a truckload of mulch on top of the cloth. We had to take apart the stones of the shrine to accomplish it, but all of the area surrounding Aphrodite's shrine is beautiful. The roses are doing quite well, although they are in dire need of the arbor. They are climbers, after all. We cleaned all the offerings on the alter, and I'm properly disposing of the ones that nature has worn down to decay. We mended the little fiberglass statue that a friend had given me years before. I have thought of her as Peitho since Aphrodisia 2010, but it's still right that she's holding the space until the Aphrodite icon returns.
Sadly, the broken Aphrodite icon could not be repaired. We tried. Glaux sat with her for an hour, I think, trying to mend her. Poor headless statue. We've brought her home, where I will dispose of this concrete shell with proper rites. It's very funerary and sad for me.
I have to admit to suffering some disappointment yesterday due to the my friends not being available. I understand two of them -- they were both out of the state, and simply couldn't make it. The third (with the statue and weed-trimmer), though, leaves me not knowing what to think. She's vanished from my contacts, disconnected her blog, isn't answering the phone. I don't know whether I should be worried or hurt. When I talked to her three days ago, all was well.
Ah, me. I don't know. *Laurelei repeats her mantra: "I can only control myself."*
All in all, the Vinalia Rustica work has been successful, but I am not done yet. The remainder of the shrine's spiral needs to be mulched, the stones need to be laid for the spiral, a statue now probably needs to be purchased and installed, and the arbor needs to be built. Iron Dragon and I are going back out on Saturday, August 27th to lay more gardening fabric and mulch. If we have time (and the cypress posts are available) we might also put up the arbor. The stones will have to wait for more time, and the statue will have to wait for more money. Oh, the world's precious commodities!
I want to thank everyone who has donated labor, materials and/or money to the shrine. Your names sit on Aphrodite's shrine within my home, and I pray for her to bless you with her many and abundant gifts!!