St. Brigid’s Day: February
We have now just finished with the long month of January, which always appears even longer that it actually is. January is also a lean month as we all probably overspent over the Christmas.
I believe this is our second year with the new St. Brigid’s Day bank holiday weekend so I am beginning to enjoy this extra bank holiday at a time when we all need it. This bank holiday has really caught the imagination and there were all kinds of celebrations for St. Brigid, otherwise known as our Celtic Goddess Bridget (several ways to spell Brigid). She was a powerful woman and the St. Brigid’s Cross is a traditional cross made with rushes where the Cross is placed over the front doorway to ward off evil, fire etc. There are some excellent websites which give lots of information about Brigid such as https://www.enjoy-irish-culture.com/ It also gives us a bit more of a gender balance with our feast days.
The weather is still cold and to be honest pretty miserable. Despite sunrise being half an hour earlier and sunset an extra hour later it is still quite dark and I find myself having to dig deep to go out in the evenings. The lack of vitamin D is beginning to show its effects now so a good idea is to focus on colour during the month of February. The question is what primary colours are there to give us a bit of oomph?
Red: Red is always associated with red roses and Valentine’s Day which is on the 14th February. Heart shaped chocolates are also popular and I did spy some of these in Marks & Spencer the other day. As regards red in nature – well not too much there except for the slim pickings of red berries that the birds have left on various bushes such as cotoneaster horizontalas. The red cyclamen plants are still hanging in and a bit of a godsend.
Yellow: I am happy to report that early flowering Narcissus are already in bloom so that definitely cheers everybody up mightily. I have spotted several clumps on my walks and also some snowdrops. I am wondering though have snowdrops gone out of fashion as I don’t see as many as I did in previous years.
Blue: I was really hard put to think of anything blue for February and then I suddenly realised that it is all around. On a nice clear day we have our blue skies and seas so sometimes we can overlook the obvious. Other blue flowers to look forward to are the arrival of our native Bluebell in forests which is a sure sign that Spring has sprung but that doesn’t happen until April so we have a while to wait yet.
To conclude it is just as well we have a new bank holiday celebrating St. Brigid’s Day as there is not much else happening. Also it does bring another colour into the equation in the form of the green rushes used for the St. Brigid’s Cross.