New Year’s Power Surges
I’m behind on my blog entries. Trying to puzzle out the identity of the various kinds of juniper (cypress?) that appear in many different yards and planting strips in my neighborhood. Meanwhile I thought you would find this anecdote amusing.
For the past several years, on New Year’s Day, I will be sitting at my desk when I hear the sound of bagpipes, and rush to the window to see a procession of kilted bagpipers, drummers and folks waving Welsh, Scottish and Irish flags marching down the street. I think of them as the First-Footers and indeed, they go into various businesses and homes in my neighborhood as a way of bringing good luck for the new year.
This year they went into a neighboring house and while they were inside, a car parked on the street outside caught on fire. It was quite dramatic, with the car alarm going off incessantly and a fire truck arriving and the firemen popping open the hood, to reveal a jolly fire blazing on the engine block. They quickly extinguished the fire (the poor car was later towed away). I didn’t think too much of it, except that in all the excitement, I didn’t wave my Welsh flag out of my window as I had planned when the First-Footers emerged from the house and surrounded the fire truck to play for the firemen.
But a few days later I was in 22 Doors, my favorite local restaurant and bar, and learned that they had been closed for several days because their computer system went down. They were blaming it on a power surge. And it turned out that the power surge coincided with the entry into the establishment of the First Footers. Now I am wondering about that car fire. And it certainly makes me believe in the power of ritual.