RANDOM THOUGHTS …An age is gone, a new age has come, and the only certainty is that a lot is changed. But no one knows into what …


Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's troublesome ― Isaac Asimov

I’ve always hated endings. Goodbyes reduce me to jelly and quiet weeping, tears creeping down my cheeks like the miserable little traitors and tyrants that they are.

I’ve never really understood why endings have such a devastating effect on me, beyond the obvious sense of loss that accompanies them. A relationship ends, and with it all the dreams of what could have been, and even the dreams of what it actually was. A loved one dies, and a part of you is obliterated with them, even as your love for them lives on. Maybe especially under those circumstances. A parent dies, and a heavy curtain falls around all of the life that went before.

The only one who did have full empathy for my reaction was one of my two favorite stepmothers (there were several others ….dad was a textbook example of the triumph of hope over experience), who also dreaded goodbyes, far beyond the normal sadness they engender, and never once, in more than a decade and a half, saw me off when I left after one of my long and happy visits, closing herself up in the master bedroom with an excellent cognac and her favorite recording of the Carmina Burana when the hour drew near.

I totally understood, and was actually grateful. One less sad goodbye to try to get thru without getting damp and weepy.

The death of the Queen has been given a solidity this morning, a form and reality today that it didn’t have until now, with the beginning of what will no doubt be a splendid, dignified, fairly brief final farewell (the Queen abhorred unnecessarily boring people, and had planned her final exit for many, many decades), after the limbo of the lying-in-state.


The incredibly elaborate, heavy Crown of State …
Few heads of state defined their country, or the time they and their country lived in and shared, like Queen Elizabeth II. No other monarch had lived that long, even QE II’s great-great-grandmother Victoria, who up until recently, had been the longest reigning monarch in British history.


The young Elizabeth I, and the old Elizabeth, who said sadly at the end of her life,
“I have lived my life in little rooms ….”
Even Elizabeth I, who managed to outlive often violent religious unrest, several assassination attempts, and a couple of attempted coups including one from the previously undefeatable Spanish Armada (maybe God really is an Englishman) survived as one of the longest reigning monarchs of the time.

So an emblem of dignity, charm, grace, and careful, invisibly wielded power, based solely on the profound strength and depth of character of a diminutive woman with a very large, very heavy crown, is gone, and what takes her place is uncertain in the current age of brassy crassness that was ushered into our consciousness in 2016, and spread rapidly thru the world like an invisible pandemic, a great, grey slimy pall infecting everything it touched, turning it tawdry and cheap and without saving grace or meaning.


The unsettling uncertainty about what’s to follow …
And while I know that many don’t share those feelings, especially here in the US and in a selection of certain fairly obvious parts of the Commonwealth, who only hung in because of Elizabeth II (I’m looking at you, Scotland and Ireland … maybe parts of Africa and the Bahamas), this is a momentous passage from one reality to another, as yet unnamed and undefined. And the grief and somber respect being poured out around the world at her passing is in equal parts for that uncertainty and that death of the age that Queen Elizabeth II put her imprint on throughout the Commonwealth and the world beyond it, as it is for the remarkable woman herself.



The radiant young Queen .... Elizabeth II a few days before her death, welcoming her last Prime Minister ...
So a last farewell, I promise, to the woman, to the Monarch, to the age she quietly helped shape from her small corner of the world, in her dignified, quiet, very dependable way.

The Queen has died. An age is gone. And ahead lies uneasiness and uncertainty, in a world already brimming with about as much of that as it needs, wants, or possibly can even handle …



Do you know much about the crown? @YippeeKi YOW !! ?

Was the one on the casket different from the one above?

Something online described this crown, so maybe there are more than one.

"The Imperial State Crown was the crown she wore when she left Westminster Abbey after her coronation. Made of gold, it is set with 2,868 diamonds, 17 sapphires, 11 emeralds, 269 pearls, and four rubies."

would sure be cool to just hang out with that crown for a long time and stare into it.
Do you know much about the crown? @YippeeKi YOW !! ?
Only that like you, I'd love to just sit with it for awhile. And ust enough more to get me into trouble if I'm wrong ....
Was the one on the casket different from the one above?
Yes. The one on the casket is the King/Queen of all Crowns, and the one most people are familiar with, since the Queen wore it at each openng of Parliament and one or two other state occasions during the year.

The crown she wore at her coronation, and that Charles III will also wear at his, is called The St Edward Crown, and is ONLY trotted out for coronations .... the two are easily confused because they both feature a royal purple velvet cap as background. This is the St Edward Crown ....


There is also the Crown of Scotland, which was probably stop the coffin when it was in Scotland, and the Prince of Wales crown, obviously only worn by the eldest Royal son....
Something online described this crown, so maybe there are more than one.
I think there are generally 3-4 headpieces that qualify as actual official crowns as opposed to diadems or tiaras .... the Imperial State Crown, the St. Edward's Crown, named, I think, after Edward the Confessor, and the above mentioned Royal Crown of Scotland, and the Prince of Wales crown ....

And there's waaaaay more than anyone ever wanted to know about royal crowns.... I rather like the comparative restraint of the Coronation crown which has less bling but more elegance and less of that "Look at e!!! Look at me !!! No, at ME!!!" quality that the grander State crown has ....
Stoats are sort of land-roving seals or otters. They have the same pleasantly friendly little baby-faces, unless you get up in it, in which case, they can be vicious f1ighters.

They're cute in the same way ferrets and weasels are, and are inquisitive, intelligent, and tend, I'm told, to be moody little bustards.

I always resented the casual use of masses of ermine by Euro royalty, but since they were regarded as egg-and-chicken stealing nuisances, no one really gave a hoot about over-hunting them.

Thanks for posting that @Rufous McKinney .....
Stoats seem to be doing OK these days in UK and Scotland (I just read).

The gamekeepers go after them, of course. But they seems to persist, despite.

(those gamekeepers)

Around California I saw a live weasel once.

Long tailed weasel is super cute, small, and I saw one ONCE during the 30 years working down here (not alive, sadly)....sort of a longer gopher size with an impressive tail, a lovely fawnskin color. And the gal working for me saw one here in town.

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