Paths, Smuggling and Missing Things

Recently I saw the title of a book that simply intrigued me. It made me want to find the book. I have not yet bought this book, but I will own it. Part of what attracted me was the word “snail” in the title. See, lately I’ve learned to pay attention to my path because of snails. I know that sounds odd, but let me explain.

Recently I saw the title of a book that simply intrigued me. It made me want to find the book. I have not yet bought this book, but I will own it. Part of what attracted me was the word “snail” in the title. See, lately I’ve learned to pay attention to my path because of snails. I know that sounds odd, but let me explain.

No, there is too much. Let me sum up. (Random movie reference) I wrote about snails here. I was touched when I heard a neighbor talking about how guilty she felt when she stepped on one so she would put apple slices out for the other snails to feast on. I like that a lot. Our apartment complex cracks down on our feeding the stray cats (some of whom are not stray but are more opportunistic pets) because it attracts possums and racoons. I know some still feed the kitties but do it in a more circumspect manner by putting it out late and picking it up early.

I haven’t yet put food out for the snails, but I may. I do take pictures of them sometimes. I took a funny one of a snail near a can of beer. The perspective made it look like the snail was the size of the Great Pink Sea Snail. Unfortunately, I forgot to remove the can and throw it away. I remembered later that slugs love beer so snails probably do too.

Randomness: I was looking up the exact name of the Great Pink Sea Snail (I’d left off the Great part) and ran across the most AMAZING thing. You can see this really cool crochet art done around a rock. Leave a comment to win it.

FOR ME! Muahahahaha!

More randomness–can you tell me what literary reference the Great Pink Sea Snail is from? Without searching the Internet? GRIN!

But I digress. As usual, right? Going back to the snails and winding slowly (like a snail) back to Tarot. It occurred to be that snails are important to me because they remind me to pay attention to where I put my feet. Therefore, they must remind me where to put my energy on my own personal path, right? So I wondered how many snails Joanna Powell Colbert had woven into her gorgeous earthcentric Gaian Tarot.

Do you know how many? C’mon. Guess!

WRONG! Unless you guessed zero. That’s right. Zero snails crawl across the Gaian Tarot. I was a bit surprised but then I realized that there really aren’t a lot of insects in this deck. Oh you have butterflies galore and a bee here and there, but overall, there is a dearth of insects. I wonder why? JPC has loads of birds and mammals and reptiles–just not so many bugs.

So I decided to go through the deck to see which cards might have hidden snails. You see snails are creatures many of us miss. We simply don’t see them. Maybe we are moving too fast. Maybe we aren’t looking down. Maybe we don’t want to see them. Whatever the reason, we miss snails.

So here are the five cards from the Gaian Tarot where there are hidden snails. Arwen says so. So mote it be.

In the Ten of Earth, there is a snail hidden in the ferns on the stump of the tree in the foreground. Her head is extended because she wants to travel with the old man but even at his slow, considered pace, she can’t keep up.

In the Teacher, a snail is hiding on the under side of the nettle leaf. Because we avoid the stinging nettle (pain), we miss the small beauty of the delicately-striped snail.

In the Three of Earth, a snail has hitched a ride in. He is in the center basket gliding up the sage. He has joined the work party of the three women. He reminds them to slow down to enjoy this wonderful sharing time.

In the Ace of Earth, a snail is whispering in the fawn’s ear. She is hidden by the delicate leaves but if you use your X-ray vision, you can see her behind them. She wants the fawn to know that you don’t have to hurry up and grow up. Sometimes the beginnings should be slowly savored.

In the Gardener, a snail is exploring the basket of veggies. You won’t miss the small bites he needs to live. Remember to share the bounty with all.

I hope Joanna will forgive me for smuggling in one of my new favorite creatures. Oh! Did you want to know the name of that book? Here’s a link. This IS an affiliate link so if you buy the book, I get like .10. Just so you know. 🙂

The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating by Elisabeth Tova Bailey is the book.

Isn’t that a great cover?

Pssst! Tomorrow is the last day to take advantage of my early bird specials for my September online classes.

RANDOM CONVERSATION CREATOR: What do you think may be missing from your cards? What cards would you think it might be hiding in?

10 thoughts on “Paths, Smuggling and Missing Things”

  1. Interesting post.

    Frogs have been seeking my attention for the past few weeks.

    According to, the frogs wisdom includes Reminder of common bonds with all life, singer of songs that celebrate the most ancient watery beginnings, Transformation, Cleansing, Understanding emotions, and Rebirth.

    I hadn’t thought of looking through my tarot cards to see which cards that have frogs present. I look forward to doing so.

    Thank you for posting this and steering me toward such an activity.

  2. I find this idea of hidden snails delightful! Not sure yet what I feel is missing from certain cards, or what animal I want to look for, but I’ll let the idea sink in for a bit and see what pops up. Thanks for this charming notion!

  3. Cheers Arwen,
    Thank you for posting about the forgotten snail. I need to be more snail like when I go through some of my daily tasks. Sometimes the phrase “you move too fast” comes into my head, as I whirl throuugh the day but I think I will think of snails next time. I can’t wait to take out my Gaian tarot cards to look at the snails and Sunday is a perfect day! As I leave for work today, snails will be my meditation and teacher for today. Thank you Arwen, for such a lovely post.
    Peace and Blessings,

  4. Love this, Arwen! Hah. I’ll have to go examine those cards for snails myself.

    Why didn’t I put any snails in the GT? I think it’s because I just don’t see them very often. And other insects? Good question. I think I just wasn’t tuned in to the insect world all that much while creating the deck. Either that, or it’s just a matter of scale — it’s hard to see something so tiny. For example, the bee on a stalk of lavender in the Nine of Earth. Oh so easy to miss. And the chickadee in the Tree card — not an insect but a small bird, and still easy to miss.

  5. Joanna, one of my greatest joys is staring at a card in your deck until I THINK I’ve found every small creature. It is mesmerizing to me. 🙂

  6. Arwen, I chose the Mystic Dreamer Tarot to search for my frogs. I was delighted to find a few. Although easy to miss, they were visible with a little help from a magnifiying glass. I plan to do a post on it. Just haven’t found the time to do so. I’ll be sure to let you know when I get it together. I’m interested in seeing if the message of the frog is evident in the cards in which they appear.

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