There were outbreaks of wodulation in Glastonbury last weekend as Wod supported the fabulously funky Green Angels for a French and Breton bal in the town hall. The Angels were celebrating their album launch and the event was timed to coincide with imbolc, the first festival of spring. We played for an hour and then again acoustically at the end, with the dancers pressed all around us, as seems to be becoming traditional. It was a fine night.
We stayed over (thanks again to Mike and Jane) and after a full English breakfast in the Mocha Berry Cafe, made the obligatory ascent up the Tor, the sacred Isle of Avalon. Aside from a one or two clumps of snowdrops there were few intimations of spring. Indeed, the flurries of snow quickly began to settle.
We got home after a somewhat alarming journey through a blizzard to find that a friend, Jessica Abrahams, had sent me a book, a catalogue of an exhibition of a little known Slovenian artist called Boris Zohar that she'd picked up on her travels (I'd normally add a link at this point but Zohar seems to have very little online presence). She thought, what with my interest in folk rites and all, I might find the pictures...interesting...I think his work is incredible and it deserves to be better known.
Zohar's thing is painting the kurent, a figure from Slovenian folklore, which he does somewhat obsessively. The kurenti come out at Easter time and welcome in the spring with dances, cracked whips and enormous bells tied around their midriffs. They're kind of comic and odd all at the same time.
Clearly from the same stable as the krampus the kurent is perhaps not quite as scary, but I still think our spring festivals could take a little inspiration from their European cousins.
In the meantime, with the cold snap continuing and more snow forecast tonight I guess we'll have to settle for hunting woozles in the woods.