Led Zeppelin, Communication Breakdown
As I headed home from school one afternoon earlier this week, which is about a 15-mile trek on the interstate, it wasn’t yet rush hour so traffic was flowing smoothly…at first. Gradually, I found myself having to reduce my speed, eventually coming to a stop behind a massive sea of brake lights. I’d get to travel about 20 feet at maybe 5mph, then have to stop again. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. Repeat several times. Finally, I got to a vantage point where, if I squinted, I could see the cause of the holdup: about a quarter of a mile ahead in the median, I spied a fire engine, lights flashing, along with two highway patrol cruisers, lit up like Christmas. As I got closer, I noticed an SUV and a black sedan, also in the median, clearly having been involved in an accident that – thankfully — didn’t appear to have been too horrific. There was nothing actually blocking any of the lanes on the interstate; in fact, the entire fiasco was closer to the other side of the median. It became obvious that the holdup was thanks to lookie-loos who couldn’t resist slowing down, craning their necks to get a glimpse of the drama. As I drove past the accident scene, the speed of everyone on the interstate increased at least tenfold. Okay, cool. That’s over.
As I drove on, less than a mile down the interstate, what’s this? Another sea of brake lights ahead of me? Seriously?! Aargh…now what?
This time, on the right shoulder of the highway, there was a highway patrolman chatting with the drivers of two vehicles, one of which had evidently rear-ended the other (perhaps as the second guy was distracted as he was being a contortionist in order to see the previous accident? But I digress…) No injuries to speak of, not too much of a slowdown…okay, then…moving on.
Over the next four miles, I came upon yet two more accidents. Neither appeared to have been very serious, but they were enough to be at least a minor inconvenience for the rest of us, collectively slowing everyone down as we headed toward our respective destinations. Admittedly, I was glad I hadn’t been involved in any of those collisions, but it was frustrating nevertheless.
The following day, as I headed back on the same route toward school, I encountered not one, not two, but three separate vehicles pulled over along a two-mile stretch of interstate. I have a lead foot, so at this point I breathed a better-them-than-me sigh of relief and resolved to keep an eye on my speed.
When I arrived at school and walked into the lab, it’s lights out and nobody home. I set my laptop and book bag on the table and headed out to see where everyone was. Turned out, my instructor had been involved in a minor fender-bender in the parking lot with a Civil War veteran who had come barreling through the parking lot at breakneck speed.
And all of the above was in a 24-hour period.
They are examples of what can happen…when Mercury attacks!
When Mercury is in retrograde, which occurs three times a year (and it is currently in retrograde from May 19th thru June 11th), we experience more than the usual issues in areas of our lives which are governed by Mercury: communication breaks down (think unusually bad cell service, texts/email not going through, calls going unreturned, misunderstandings, issues with the internet, misdirected snail-mail, etc.) and short trips (those not requiring an overnight stay) are more prone to trouble: fender-benders, full-on crashes, car trouble, running out of gas, you name it: if it involves a vehicle – particularly an automobile – it’s vulnerable to problems during a Mercury retrograde period — especially if Mercury or Saturn is in your Third House, like me (yay me, Saturn in Third!) Plans fall apart. Contracts can be iffy.
Yet, I assure you that despite these tri-annual annoyances, there are little common-sense things you can and should do to ensure you arrive on the other end of the Mercury retrograde with your sanity – and your life – intact. Actually, I hope these are things you’re doing all the time. Things like…
• Making sure you have plenty of gas. If there’s any question whatsoever that you might not have enough fuel to get to your destination, do not go until you fill ‘er up.
• Allowing additional travel time when heading to work, school, or appointments – anywhere you need to be at a certain time.
• Wearing your seatbelt. Even though you are wise to the havoc which Mercury can unleash upon the Earth (give yourself a pat on the back for me, Dear Follower), the idiot driver next to you might be clueless/not care/not believe in astrology/other/all of the above.
• Watch how you drive (speed, signaling, lane-changing, etc.); you’re more likely to be pulled over and ticketed during this time.
• Is your car’s maintenance up-to-date? If not, you might want to look into taking care of any potential vehicle-crippling issues (preferably prior to a Mercury retrograde.)
• If at all possible, avoid entering into contracts during a Mercury retrograde.
• Communicate clearly to avoid hurt feelings over misunderstandings.
• Avoid making any major decisions during a Mercury retrograde.
• Plan ahead before the retrograde. Be prepared.
• Try not to blame everything negative that happens solely on the fact that Mercury is retrograde. For example, if you’re texting and driving, you’re more likely to cause an accident any time.
That said, a Mercury retrograde actually does have its benefits. One of these benefits is a particularly heightened sixth
sense (so pay attention to that intuition!) and take plenty of time to slow down and reflect. And around late August – early September, start preparing and brace yourself: Mercury will be retrograde for the third — and final — time in 2015 on September 17th thru October 9th.