Thursday, May 21, 2009

More Mercury Retrograde Angst


For the past several months I've had semi-idle to not-so-idle thoughts of Philadelphia, mainly because even with the recession/depression, real estate in New York City still sucks; as a freelance copyeditor/proofreader/writer/astrologer I can do my work from anywhere; I'm definitely a city girl and Philadelphia is a city; and especially if you live in the "old" part of it, you don't need a car, so you really can save the money you're not shelling out for rent. It's also not too far from NY, so I could hop on Amtrak to visit friends and family.

Imagine my happiness when a dear friend of mine offered to take me to a Burning Man offshoot in Delaware called PDF (short for Playa del Fuego, although it's not on a beach) for Memorial Day weekend, and in a neat bit of Jungian synchronicity, the group of 25 or so people in his camp was called PEX--the Philadelphia Experiment. So not only would I finally get to experience my first-ever "Burn," but would get to hang out with some cool people from the City of Brotherly Love.

With Mercury Stationary Retrograde at the time of my friend's offer, I should've known it wasn't going to be so simple.

At first it was a question of getting an extra ticket, because another friend he'd asked several weeks earlier said she could come just a few days after he asked me. But the extra ticket was secured on Monday. What happened very late that night or very early the next morning, with the Sun opposing my Neptune, was that I got sick. This entire Mercury Rx period has been jam-packed with work, comings and goings, various responsibilities, and dealing with people from my past. What I didn't count on was my health suffering. But since Mercury is my ruling planet (something easy to forget, as Pluto sitting on my Ascendant tends to overshadow the Virgo Rising part), and I've been under an unusual amount of strain and haven't gotten nearly enough sleep, eventually my body decided to rebel. At first I thought it was a continuation of the spring allergies that normally peak for me during early May, but then I started feeling achy. Like any self-respecting Virgo Rising, my medicine cabinet includes a thermometer, which confirmed that I was running a fever.

I managed to see my doctor yesterday although I had to wait most of the day for her to squeeze me in. Oddly enough, I was not seriously concerned about swine flu, probably because at a very deep level I think of myself as invincible. But my tonsils apparently resemble Polaris missiles and my nose and ears are congested. (What, did you say something?) At least my lungs are clear. I'm on antibiotics and codeine for my cough, and by tomorrow morning I probably won't be contagious anymore, but I'm still running a temperature; even if that goes away by tomorrow, partying this weekend is out of the question, my body just couldn't handle it, and although I'm semi-altruistic, it would torture me to watch people around me having that kind of fun if I am unable to participate.

(Cue: violin.)

And how can I gift the people at PDF with my astrology, stories, and poetry if I barely have a voice? I don't want to be around others feeling like warmed-over doggie-do anyway; the antibiotic I'm on is making me nauseous even though I took it with food, and I just want to hide out in my bed with the phone turned off and catch up on sleep, Netflix, journaling, and fictioning.

It's a sunny spring day as I write this pathetic little blog, which somehow adds to the indignity of the situation. A person should not get tonsillitis when it is 73 degrees and the sky is a seamless cobalt blue.

Astrology teaches that, just like George Harrison sang on his first solo outing, all things must pass. Mercury will not be Retrograde forever. My health will return if I listen to my body and slow the hell down for a bit instead of flipping the bird to the cosmos and continuing to burn my candle at both ends. PDF is a biannual event. And Philadelphia, the last time I checked, is also still there if I seriously want to see if it's my kind of place.

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