This Is our Village

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Groundhog Day

It's been about 48 hours since anyone put an entry on this blog, so, I figured a story like this might wake us up.

Today is Groundhog Day, the traditional time where, if a rodent sees its shadow, it's more winter (it's also the basis for the Bill Murray movie). From (yes, there's a website), here's a bit of history:

Groundhog Day, February 2nd, is a popular tradition in the United States. It is also a legend that traverses centuries, its origins clouded in the mists of time with ethnic cultures and animals awakening on specific dates. Myths such as this tie our present to the distant past when nature did, indeed, influence our lives. It is the day that the Groundhog comes out of his hole after a long winter sleep to look for his shadow.
If he sees it, he regards it as an omen of six more weeks of bad weather and returns to his hole.
If the day is cloudy and, hence, shadowless, he takes it as a sign of spring and stays above ground.
The groundhog tradition stems from similar beliefs associated with Candlemas Day and the days of early Christians in Europe, and for centuries the custom was to have the clergy bless candles and distribute them to the people. Even then, it marked a milestone in the winter and the weather that day was important.
According to an old English song:
If Candlemas be fair and bright,
Come, Winter, have another flight;
If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,
Go Winter, and come not again.


  1. Cloudy in Gobbler's Knob this morning! Guess the folks buried in snow will be giddy at the news.

  2. I'm flattered beyond description :)


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