Are You A Last Page Peeker or Just Being Efficient?

© Lucian Milasan |
© Lucian Milasan |

There are two types of people in the world:

  • Those who like to sneak a peek at the last page of a novel &
  • Those who don’t

I fall very firmly & unapologetically into the first category…and yet I am not the type who sneaks a look at Xmas presents.

This habit has become even clearer since I started using the Kindle/ebook reader my husband bought me for Xmas.

Don’t get me wrong- I love love love it. Given that I have so far read 4 novels over the last week & a half on this Brisbane trip, I figure it has saved me at least 2-3 kgs of packing weight, packed space & money for when I realised after the 1st two novels that I hadn’t brought enough with me to get through until the end of this crappy project.

With the kindle I love how I can dip in & out of different books. I love having a portable bookcase in my handbag rather than trying to predict what I might feel like reading after an exceptionally hard day in a long line of exceptionally hard days at the office. I have always found that deciding which books to pack is a little like deciding what you will possibly feel like eating for lunch next Wednesday.

At home I generally have a few different books going at the same time. There is usually:

  • Something light & frothy for reading in the bath or the pool
  • Something a little more meaty for sitting on the lounge with a wine & my dog at the end of a bad day
  • Something I know I should be reading because it is supposed to be literary & declared “good” by some reading club or another but that I haven’t actually decided that I like yet
  • Some 700+ page epic which I have got halfway through & can’t see the end to
  • A chick lit novel or two that I am reading for escapism &, if I am perfectly honest, genre analysis
  • A lightish mystery or thriller in a favourite series

With the kindle, it is all in together. In my handbag. Cool. I can even highlight passages I like.

What don’t I like about it?

It doesn’t feel like or smell like a book. Because mine has a really cool red leather (in homage to my Venus in Aries) cover it does actually read like a book.

Of more importance to me is that it doesn’t have a page count & I can’t flip to the end. For me, both of these points are important.

With nearly every planet & major chart point in my natal chart hitting Uranus or Pluto and therefore high scores in Donna Cunningham’s Uranus (51) & Pluto (59) tests, I am commitment phobic & a control freak. There I said it.

I like to know just how much of myself I will be committing to a book. If it is anything longer than, say, 375 pages, I had better be pretty damn sure that it is worth my time. But more than controlling, I like to know these things from an efficiency perspective.

My daughter (Five Foot Nothing), with all of her Aries planets, is what can be termed an efficient reader. She doesn’t want to have to go wading through words for characterisation or motivations. The author is wasting her time if she is expecting FFN to go delving below the surface. She recently declared that she wasn’t going to finish Eclipse because “like the book is going to take me 6 months to read & the movie is only like 2 hours so I really don’t think this is a very good use of my time.”

For all that I love to read- it satisfies the Piscean need to escape- I am efficient in a different way. I blame my Venus in Aries- I don’t want to have to wait for satisfaction, & if by chance I do commit to the long haul, it better bloody well be worth it at the end. I do not want to get to the end of an epic only to find that any of the following has happened:

  • The bitch gets the guy
  • The bad karma fairy visits the wrong person
  • Something bad happens to a kid or to someone who is good- I can forgive JK Rowling most things, but not for killing off Dobbie
  • The dog dies

Imagine my disappointment if I invest the time & commit to a book only to get to page 395 to find that nothing is resolved (to my satisfaction), the bitch got the guy & the dog hasn’t made it. Now that would neither be a return on investment or an efficient use of my time.

Saturn Retrograde- Getting Your Shit Together

Treasury Casino, Brisbane, pic by me
Treasury Casino, Brisbane, pic by me

It is often said that planets become more emphasised when they are retrograde ie appear to be going backwards from the perspective of us here on Earth. Personally, I find that simply terrifying when it comes to Saturn- although many of you won’t share that fear.

The reason their action is emphasised is because it is internalised. We therefore feel it more. And if you have planets or chart points at 17 Libra, 17 Aries, 17 Capricorn or 17 Cancer- you will feel this one even more as Saturn stationed retrograde at 17 Libra. His energy focused on this point for longer than usual…and Saturn never does anything by chance.

So, what can we expect from a Saturn retrograde? Well, more saturn stuff of course, but with the prefix “re” inserted in front of the word eg re-structure, re-commit, re-focus, re-calibrate, re-trench. 

Saturn rules the supports, structures, rules and responsibilities in our life. In theory, Saturn is the fun cop who says “no, it is time you went home young lady,” when every part of you is crying out to say yes. When Saturn is retrograde, he is sending you back to your room to think very carefully about what you are doing, goals you have started working towards and the commitments you have made. It is sort of like a planetary cooling off period when it is OK to re-assess and change direction or re-assess and say “no”. This is not the time to make new commitments or start new projects, but great to sort out just what you want out of existing goals.

Saturn retrogrades give you time to sort your shit out, get rid of any frustrations and re-think the viability of any promises you have already made.

The area of life Saturn is retrograde in is emphasised and needs defining. If it is the 7th, relationships will need to be defined. If it is the 2nd, money issues and values will come to the forefront. With Saturn in Libra in 2011, goals and ambitions will be looked at in terms of relationships & moderation.

The structures that are built during a Saturn retrograde will stand you in good stead once he starts to move forward again.

Check out what is in your chart on or around 10-17 Libra- this is your area of focus. This is 7th/8th house for me so my focus is around relationships, the assets of the relationship, other peoples stuff & the really deep base things of life- you know: death, sex & taxes. Given that I have no planets in range that will be touched by aspect by Saturn, I am not expecting more than a general re-hashing of what Saturn means in my life in relation to 7th & 8th house issues. At least, that is what I hope :).

In terms of aspects:

  • If you have a planet or chart point (such as Ascendant, Midheaven, Descendant or IC) at 10-17 Libra, Saturn will conjunct this planet/point during the retrograde period.
  • If you have a planet or chart point at 10-17 Aries, Saturn will oppose this point during the retrograde period
  • If you have a planet or chart point at 10-17 Cancer or Capricorn, Saturn will square this point during the retrograde
  • If you have a planet or chart point at 10-17 Gemini or Aquarius, Saturn will trine this point during the retrograde
  • If you have a planet or chart point at 10-17 Sagittarius or Leo, Saturn will sextile this point during the retrograde

Saturn in the 1st: Panic Attacks, Meltdowns & the Gateway Bridge

Brisbane River- still murky 2 weeks after the flood peak
Brisbane River- still murky 2 weeks after the flood peak

There is this road (in New Zealand) between Wellington and the Wairapa Valley wine region. Locals call it the Gorge. I had driven it before, but as a passenger…& then really only noticed the steepness of the road on the way into the wine regions (if you know what I mean).

A few years ago my daughter & I did a mini girlie road trip from Auckland down to Wellington. With a stop in Martinborough in the Wairapa, we had no choice but to do the Gorge road. About half way up the mountain I took a look ahead & saw nothing but steep winding hairpin bends as far as the eye could see. I felt like I would never get to the top…and I had a mini panic attack. My hands went sweaty, I found it difficult to breathe & I completely went rigid behind the wheel…until common sense kicked in. There was no other way off the mountain but to keep going. And with my daughter in the car, I had a responsibility to get us both to the other side safely. And there was no real logical reason to assume that I wouldn’t be able to. But for that split second the responsibility was as big as the self doubt.

The same thing happened yesterday. I chanced a look ahead & couldn’t see an end to the job I am doing- and end to the immediate crisis. I froze up & I couldn’t breathe. For the last 2 weeks I haven’t had time to stop & think, let along stop my head in order to sleep properly & yesterday I just couldn’t see an end to it.

The effort to stay glass half full in an environment which was completely empty was just that little too much. I delayed the full meltdown & ducked outside to sit under a tree & breathe. But what has this to do with astrology?

Jupiter, in the 1st degree of Aries is conjunct my natal Saturn. Not quite exact (Saturn is at 58′ Aries), it is close enough to be doing me damage.

Thinking about it, Jupiter in Aries is an expansionary go forward just flipping do it energy. Saturn, though, can be fearful- especially when it is in the 1st house as it is for me. It can manifest in a belief that you just aren’t good enough, that you aren’t capable of doing what needs to be done. It can manifest as a lack of self confidence & absolutely does so for me. Where Saturn is in your chart is what you are afraid to be- where the fear or lack of confidence is. In the 1st, that fear is about self. Usually though, Jupiters’ faith is enough to push me through.

Yesterday that absolute faith that we can rebuild something in a week rather than 3 months hit Saturn with the most humungous thud. And I forgot how to breathe. And I forgot how to act. And I forgot how to fake it. Sure what we are doing is amazing. What we have achieved thus far is amazing. There is no logical reason to assume we can’t get to the top.

Gateway Bridge. Pic from Brisbane Times
Gateway Bridge. Pic from Brisbane Times

I have this recurring dream where I am in a car & there is a passenger in the car that I am responsible for. I can reach the pedals, but I can’t work the brakes & I can’t where I am going. I know I am on one of those bridges that arches high high high. In my dream it is always the Gateway Bridge in Brisbane (although I didn’t recognise it as such until the 1st time we drove over it to get to the Sunshine Coast). It always has been. I can’t see where I am going & I can’t control the car but I have to trust that I can get us all to the other side.

I always have this dream when I feel out of control. I always have this dream when I feel that the responsibility is too much to bear. Saturn in the 1st. I had the dream last night. In fact, I have had it a lot over the last 2 weeks.

With Uranus still hooked up very closely with my Moon, my emotions are all over the place, but have to remain as tightly controlled as I possibly can. Jupiter is tearing through forging an expansionary path, but natal Saturn has held up a stop sign & is asking “are you sure?” “are you up to this?” “there are a lot of people depending on this to be right, you know…”

So I allowed the meltdown (relatively controlled) & with the help of a talking tomcat (don’t ask), it is full steam ahead again. This time Jupiter has won. Sure the battle is by no means over, but somehow or other all the pieces will eventually go together- there is reall no reason to assume otherwise.

Brisbane Botanical Gardens. Pic by me.
Brisbane Botanical Gardens. Pic by me.

How I Missed My Mums Birthday…& a Bit More on Aquarius

© Johnny Lye |
© Johnny Lye |

Ok, I haven’t really missed it…but I bet you looked at this title & formed all sorts of nasty judgements about me. I would have missed it though. I have missed lots of stuff in the last 2 weeks & forgotten even more.

I didn’t realise until yesterday that the Sun had gone into Aquarius & I missed it. The only reason I remembered was that my Dad rang me to ask if we intended coming over to the Lions Den on Sunday for Mum’s birthday. Ooops. That means 2 things:

  • I had forgotten Mums birthday (nearly)
  • I have to somehow get to a shop to buy a present (although she says she just wants some money to go horse-riding)
  • If it’s Mums’ birthday, the Sun must be in Aquarius & I haven’t written a post about it.

I think I have a pretty good excuse with work over the last 2 weeks & being in Brisbane for the last week…but I am soooo not pushing it!

The one upside to this whole last fortnight thing has been that every maintenance appointment I have had has had to be cancelled. The money saved will come in handy in Bali (which for those who may be interested is in 4 1/2 weeks). Thankfully for all, I made it back to get the grey taken out of my hair today…which brings me neatly back to my Mum & her Aquariusness.

My Mum is Aquarius personified. She has the Sun, Venus & Mercury in Aquarius & absolutely nothing in any water signs…Hmmm. I figure this helps explain a few things:

  • her “individual” dress sense…& I mean that in the nicest possible way… My Mum has been the same weight since the day she got married (although she did tell me that once she ballooned all the way up to 9stone) despite never dieting or exercising (if she feels the urge, she lies down until the feeling passes) and for many years made all her own clothes. Because she has always had such a neat figure, she could look great in anything- even the overalls & gumboots or riding boots she would turn up at the school in. In fact, I recently put together an old fashioned slide show for my younger sisters’ 4oth birthday that had an entire section on the many ways that Mum could wear the separate pieces of one hot pink suit in the early 70s.
  • her inventiveness. My Mum was the only Mum who did pottery, painting, cattle mustering & has carried a saddle from house to house over all the moves we have done in the hope that one day she will have something to put under it. Mum could fashion a dress up outfit from nothing…although I am sure my brother still cringes at the photos of him going as an oil heater to an Easter Parade. Personally I loved the clucky hen on my head & possibly the witches outfit was a sign of things to come. These days that inventiveness & quirkiness is invested in finding cool things to do with the grandkids- I would like to bet most kids don’t get excursions that range widely from cemetaries to ferries to fishing trips to weeding days. 
  • her community spirit. Mum has always given more of herself. As kids it was canteen, remedial reading, school art classes. These days she is heavily involved in dog obedience training (she is an instructor, but refused to pass Kali & I as she said my dog was capable, but I was too undisciplined…), dog safety awareness sessions at schools & the local council & animal welfare. Pity her own dog is so untrainable (Dad won’t let her have the internet so I know she won’t read this…)
  • wanting to know stuff. This goes beyond academic brightness. While my husband would disagree, Mum likes to know how stuff works. Her perseverence & logic is tested in her family history research & training courses on…well, dog training.
  • her detachment. Mum doesn’t tend to covet anything. she has always been able to make do on not a lot- which, with 4 kids & being a stay at home mum, she had to be able to do. With Mars in taurus, unfortunately this detachment doesn’t extend to crap around the house. I think she still has all of my old referees kit in the drawer under what was my old bed- even though I left home 23 years ago & have repeatedly told her that I don’t want it. Somewhere in there is still probably the flag (complete with Steve Gearin badge) that I used to take to Canterbury home games at Belmore Oval when I would go as a teenager with my dad & my liddle brudda.

It is the detachment that is the part I least understand about Aquarius…yet with as much Pisces as I have, I figure that if I didn’t have a Mum who taught me not to get emotional about EVERYTHING (or at least to hide it) I would possibly be in a very different position now…& not necessarily a better one!

I find it interesting now to watch my daughter (Five Foot Nothing) with my mother. The synastry there is incredible:

  • FFNs’ Moon is conjunct Mums’ Sun
  • FFNs’ Aries stellium of Sun, Mars, Mercury & Saturn is conjunct Mums’ Moon
  • FFNs’ Venus is conjunct Mums’ Venus/Mercury conjunction
  • Mums’ Taurus Mars trines FFNs’ Capricorn Ascendant

…and they understand each other perfectly… FFN’s Aquarius Moon/Aries Sun has that same combination of action & detachment as Mums’ does…which is fortunate given that the next thing I will be missing will be FFN’s 1st day back at school…yep away again next week :(.

I Did it My Way- Aquarius Revisited & the Divinely Inked Mr Williams

Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams

This song gives me goosebumps every time. Hmmm….so does the divinely inked Mr Williams. But given that I am not usually attracted to Aquarian men…I suspect that particular culprit is his irresistable Scorpio Moon & has nothing to do with his cuteness or his ink. It is the Scorpio Moon that adds the intensity, the dark lows & the emotion in this clip. Check it out on YouTube here.

Last years’ Aquarius post is at this link. I have published his chart- formed using a heap of info freely available on the web. I know there is other info out there disputing the birth time, and that is cool too. I’m interested in this chart not from an analysis or forecasting viewpoint (will leave that to celebrity astrologers who are much more interested than I & substatntially better at it than I), but rather from a here is a chart of someone I think is pretty cool which says what I want it to say. That’s all.