Saturday, January 9, 2010

Grrrawr




For the longest time I thought I was born in the Year of the Rabbit because all the standard charts, like the ones you see in Chinese restaurants, show my birth year under the Rabbit. About ten years ago I delved a little deeper into Chinese astrology signs and found that, because I was born in January -- today, the 9th, as a matter of fact! -- I was actually born under the Year of the Tiger.  

Find Your Chinese Sign has the usual chart with those standardized years but it also has a sign-finder with this additional explanation: Please note: The Chinese year ends on the first new moon of the following year. For those of you born in January and February please take care when determining your sign. We recommend using our Chinese Sign Finder below for the most accuracy.

Michael had Friday off from work and attended to car repair issues on my old 1991 Dodge Shadow America that we intend to drive unto its death, which is imminent by months maybe a few years. Part of the work entailed returning it to a local shop for them to tweak some work they did on it last month (no charge, as expected), leaving us a bit of time to walk around downtown Silverton. I brought my camera to get a shot of the front window of our town's most popular shop -- per a recent poll -- Stone Buddha. The shop had these wonderful tigers in its window display a couple of holiday seasons ago, not 2009, and when I saw the sign up close I realized it was because they were saving them to welcome in 2010, the Year of the Tiger. I was so excited that this is a Tiger year.



At breakfast Friday morning, before I knew we'd have the opportunity to visit Stone Buddha later in the day, I snipped a small article about the birth of five white tiger cubs from the newspaper to mention if-and-when I got some shots of the tigers downtown.
(AP)  SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) - January 7, 2010 -- The Chilean National Zoo is celebrating the birth of a rare litter of five white tigers.

Zoo director Mauricio Fabry said Thursday that the zoo will build a special habitat to accommodate the tigers born on Dec. 28.

He said that the new enclosure will include a large expanse of grass and waterfalls and will be without bars.

On Wednesday, zoo officials implanted subcutaneous chips in the cubs to identify them.

The tigers' father is Pampa, who arrived from Argentina in 2007. The mother is Luna, who arrived at the zoo from Mexico in 2004.

The couple produced a litter of three white tigers in December 2007, but the zoo hasn't seen a litter of five in 82 years.

The tigers' white fur is the result of a rare gene mutation.

Fabry says there are only 200 such tigers on the planet.
Because the article didn't show a photo I searched online and found a cool website called ZooBorns, with an article about the cubs and the most amazing photos of them. The shots are copyrighted by Reuters and the Associated Press and I can't show them here, but trust me........seeing these white tiger cubs is worth the CLICK.

Now, I am seriously practicing getting to bed earlier and rising in the mornings -- and have actually done quite well this whole week -- but it's kinda difficult to settle down right now because I have a gift from Michael (who is now asleep) and some from my sis, plus birthday cards from both of them and my brother, and one from the pets, all waiting in the living room. But I'll be good and save them until the real morning time after we are both up with cups of coffee. After all, I already had the joy of opening the package that my dear friend Francessa in Vienna sent. Oh, it is the most beautiful Swarovski silver necklace! Its gorgeous luster shines like our friendship.......and like this poem.....

The Tyger
 ~William Blake (1757-1827)

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright,
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire in thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder, and what art?
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand, and what dread feet?

What the hammer? What the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? What dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb, make thee?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright,
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?


.

25 comments:

francessa said...

Lydia, you ARE a Tiger in any case! :-)

Blake's poem is one of my favorites, but I hadn't thought of it for a long time.

Happy Birthday! Have a look at my blog, there's something red waiting for you.

English Rider said...

Happy Birthday Tigress. I had heard about the white tiger births. An unusual number of cubs for one litter and all white. Quite amazing.

littlebird said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! there is something special about early january capricorns, my father's birthday rests on the 8th, and I consistently find early jan caps are steady spiritual-voyagers. sorry to detour from your chinese astrology, I am sure tigers have special characteristics as well : )

i hope you have a wonderful day filled with all the love and joy you so deserve.

<3

Hattie said...

I'm a rabbit. But the sign does not fit me. Hmm.
So this is the year of the tiger. I wonder if anyone has informed Namaste, the white Siberian tiger at our local zoo, that it's his year.
Here is the link to the zoo web site:
http://www.hiloliving.com/HiloZoo.html

Erika C. said...

Come get your award on my blog and Happy Birthday! I want to look up my Chinese sign now. I wouldn't mind being able to change from being born in the year of the rat!

love,
Erika

Lydia said...

@francessa- Will come over in just a bit! Thank you so much my friend. :)

@English Rider- Be sure to check out the pictures. They are perfect cubs!

@littlebird- Thank you! So your dad shares a birthday with Elvis (the news reminded me of his 75th birthday last night). I like your read on early Capricorns. Many of Capricorn characteristics have never applied to me...

@Hattie- Are you born in Jan. or Feb? You should check out that sign finder if so because maybe you are not a rabbit. My husband is a rabbit and it seems to suit him. I don't see a lot of rabbit in you, from what I know from your blog!
I'll see Namaste - thanks for the link.

@Erika- I will be over in a bit. You are so kind!
Let me know what Chinese sign you are. :)

Jennifer said...

Happy birthday to you, Tigress -- so strong, so beautiful. I know several people who have birthdays this week, which is interesting to me (actually, I know many Capricorns. And Pisces.)

I hope you are having a wonderful day.

By the way, my latest post is kind of written in the style of Lydia, or at the very least I thought of you and your mix of sound, word, and image as I wrote it.

Looking to the Stars said...

HAPPY B-Day! I love anything asian. I saw about the tiger cubs also, just love them :)

Love the pic you took, what a neat store!

earthtoholly said...

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday Dear Lydiaaaaaa...happy birthday to you! How cool to be born under the sign of the strong and beautiful tiger. I hope your day was full of fun and peace, Lydia! :o)

Rhiannon said...

Oh Yes, your so right..people get so confused about when the Chinese New Year starts officially for each animal sign. I have a Chinese astrology book that lists all the dates and years for each sign and look them up when I meet someone new and ask them what month and year they were born. So, your a Tiger here. You are powerful in your life Lydia!

My New "love" is a Tiger also and a Scorpio to boot! That makes it quite interesting for a Rabbit and Pisces like me. I'm a Double Pisces, Rabbit being the Pisces in Chinese astrology..

So starting the year of the Tiger will be a great one I think! A very powerful year, with a lot of things getting done very quickly and a "huge" way I feel. A lot of strong determination to come!

I'm also very excited about the year of the Rabbit coming after this Tiger year. I'm hoping for a lot of healing and more tenderness and love and caring and "understanding" in the world for the year after this one!

I love Tiger's and Leopards. I have a few paintings of them on my wall. They represent inner strength to me when I look at them.

Have a good year you Tiger you!...:o)..May it be a great and wonderful and "powerful" year for you in your life Lydia.

Love,

Rhi

Lydia said...

@Jennifer- What nice a nice thing to say! And isn't that interesting that you know others born this week, and other Caps. I know a few Aries...very unique folks!
Am anxious to come see your latest post. :)

@Looking to the Stars- We can be excited about those beautiful cubs together. They're wonderful.
Yes, the store is really a special spot in town - I love looking around there and they also serve delectable teas.

@earthtoholly- Well, thank you for the song! I realized when I read it that it was the only time I heard it! Michael had his guitar out during the day, but was playing "Blackbird" - which is fantastic. I had a great day. :)

Lydia said...

@Rhi- Whew! I thought I lost your comment but it just crossed with my responses to others.
So next year will be a Rabbit year, eh? I hope it will be all you hope for. In the meantime, I agree with you that a Tiger year is definitely in order!
Oh my, you have a combined Scorpio/Tiger! You can handle him, Rhi. :)
Thanks for all your good wishes here.

bfk said...

Dear Fellow Tyger Lidya,
Poor Blayke, tree as he meet he cannot seem to ream the wurd "eye." I suppose Tigger would understand.

Phivos Nicolaides said...

I absolutely agree with Francessa who said that :You ARE a Tiger in any case"! Hugs Philip

Phivos Nicolaides said...

Happy Birthday my dearest friend Lydia! Lots of love from the Nicolaides family!

distracted by shiny objects said...

Happy BaaaaaaaaaDay(I'm a sheep). Okay, I'll leave now. Your groans are quite enough:>)

Roxanne said...

I love this poem. Ah the new year comes soon! Wishing you a blessed year, for that wants happens when it's YOUR year :)

Lydia said...

@bfk- Eye loved the way ewe plaid with letters in your comment.
And I loved your birthday greeting at my Facebook page.

@Phivos- I gladly accept those hugs and that birthday love from the Nicolaides family. They make me happy. :)

@Distracted- I got a kick out of your comment, most definitely! You stand out in the herd, ya know?

@Roxanne- Thanks so much and I really hope you are right. I feel really positive about the year, in spite of very real threats to my husband's job security in the next months.....
Happy New Year to you, my author friend!

naomi dagen bloom said...

Happy birthday...how special to have a window display that celebrates it!

Lydia said...

@naomi- This is so amazing! I just finished reading your latest post and leaving a comment, came back to close down my blog and found your comment just in! We're on a wavelength, Naomi. :)

Thanks for the good wishes.

Erin Davis said...

Once again, the dots you connect make my day!

the watercats said...

happy belated birthday!.. have managed to fall behind blog visiting.. keeping warm is tiring work! Think I'm year of the horse and the kid was born year of the dragon (I love that!).. hope your birthday was a good-un, all the best things :-)

Lydia said...

@Erin- Aw, thanks!

@the watercats- Belated wishes are great too (I even received two cards in the mail today) because I like extending my happy birthday! Thanks for helping to do that.

Horses are wonderful, and dragons too. My sis was born in a dragon year too.

Citizen of Earth said...

Happiest of Birthdays

Anniversary of your arrival
Here among the stars
We spin
We wheel
We travel together for a time
As we share this experience
Called Life

It has been good to you
As you have been good
To the rest of us
I join you in celebration
May you prosper, as you make a difference
In all the lives you touch

Thank you
For being you

Bobbb

Lydia said...

@Bobbb- I will tuck away this special greeting from you. I love your personal poems and it was really wonderful hearing from you again.
Happy New Year, friend. :)

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