Monday, April 29, 2013

Gaelic Wisdom for the Warrior

Am fear a thug buaidh air fhéin... thug é buaidh air namhaid.   (as Gaidhlig Albanach)

An fear a thug bua ar é féin.... thug sé bua ar namhaid  (Gaeilge) 

The man who conquers himself... conquers an enemy.   

The Gall-Ghaeil

Love the illustration above.  It appeals to me.  I do not know who tagged on the clever saying, but I like it.  The young folk tell me this is an illustration from some 'game' they play with computers or Eboxes or something similar.  Pé sceal é....   I am this great fortune of know a lot about my ancestry. I descend from warrior stock, from a warrior caste.  I have the advantage of working with our McCain DNA project and access to primary sources about my own family from the late thirteenth century to we migrated to the New World.

We originate in mid Argyll, in what is now called Kilmichael Parish.  That is the Dunadd areas for you with map savvy.   This area was home to a people called the Gall-Ghaeil, or 'stranger Gaels.'  They were a Gaelic people who became über influenced and joined with the Norse in their lands.  It was a peaceful joining, marriages, etc., worked out well for both parties. Pé sceal é.... they gave rise to a peculiar phenomenon, i.e. Gaelic Vikings.  This in time gave rise to the Gallóglaigh and Redshanks, and pretty much is the story of my family.  We are those people today.

Nice illustration.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Gray Catbird

Today a Gray Catbird came to the feeder.  For a couple of weeks I have been hearing 'kittens' out in the woods beside my apartment.  We have a stray cat that we feed, and she has had kittens, so I thought they must be hers.  But every time I went out to look... nada, níl cat amhain ann. So... the arrival of the Catbird explains all.  It does mew like a cat, incredibly so.  Mystery solved.  Nice bird.

The Indigo Bunting

This very handsome fellow has been visiting the feeder of late, the Indio Bunting.  Very beautiful.  They are fairly common here in north Mississippi.


The Chuck-will's-widow, one of my very favourite birds.  We have many of them here in the wooded hills of north Mississippi.  The locals usually call them, quite incorrectly, a Whip-poor-will.  Why?  Well, the two birds are very similar and do have similar calls, but to the experienced ear they are quite different. We do have some bona fide Whip-poor-wills in north Mississippi, but 99 times out of 100, what one hears at Twilight and at night, is the much more common Chuck-will.  Last night one was about ten feet from my bedroom window, singing his sad strange call.    It eats primarily insects, particular those active at night such as moths, beetles, and winged ants. It will also eat small birds and bats, swallowing them whole; its mouth opens very wide.  It is an odd looking, yet beautiful bird.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Path of the Gods

Perun the Thunderer, aka Thor, Taran, Donner
 the gods only go with you if you put yourself in their path. And that takes courage....

Mary Stewart, The Chrystal Cave