This actually started a week ago today, when I was rushing about the kitchen at Summerland, buttering bread for garlic toast. I turned around at one point, and surveyed the activity around me.
I don't really want to call it chaos, though that's what it was. To call it "chaos" would bring up too many ideas of disorganization, things breaking down, and loud bangs.
But really, it was what Discordians might recognize as chaotic harmony: a state of chaos so pure that everything flows seamlessly, like water down a mountain stream; not a state punctuated by stuttering jolts, or by small explosions or unexpected turbulence.
There was nothing disharmonious in that kitchen. There was no element of danger, or a single person unsure of their job at that point. Nothing was dropped, nothing was broken. Not a single thing was out of place, even though there were things in every conceivable place in the kitchen taking up counterspace, burnerspace, sinkspace, and even being tossed through the air when necessary.
At that moment, I felt more amazed by my Grove than I ever had in my life. Here is what we have been growing from small seedlings, tending carefully, nourishing for so many years. Here it is, right before my eyes, in the bloom and promise of its youth and vigor.
Three Cranes turns five years old very soon (our anniversary is Sept. 22). At Samhain, I'm stepping down as Senior Druid. I will, of course, still be around in my capacity as Priest, but the day-to-day running and the direction of the Grove will be in new hands (and, I might add, hands that I have the utmost confidence in).
I couldn't be more proud of my Cranes. They've done so much for me, really, that I can't express it. I know I've done things for them, too (they inform me of this often), but I watched five years of blood and sweat pay off right then and right there, and I knew that we had built something together that would leave an indelible mark on each member, ADF, Central Ohio, and even Neo-Paganism as we know it.
I settled in and watched the Cranes cooking and cleaning. I listened to them trade insults and laughter. A tangible warmth that was not the heat nor the humidity of the day pervaded the space. The smell of the cooking wended through the kitchen, causing startled comments from those who passed by. New members, old members, and adopted members were all pouring their souls into the Grove work, and I imagined that the food we were producing would have an unmistakable hint of the spice of fellowship. I savored the moment, smiling contentedly and breathing easily for about thirty seconds.
And then, still smiling with a full heart, I turned back to my garlic bread, pouring butter with one hand and spreading with the other. That only lasted a moment, though, before I was convinced to join in a dance to the music we had blasting over the CD player.
I'm still filled to the brim with that experience today.