Spirits

Monsters of Europe: The Pooka of Ireland!

Pooka

Don’t be fooled by the cute name. The púca ,pooka, phouka, phooka, phooca, puca or púka–however you spell it—is considered to be a bringer both of good and bad fortune. In pookas’ various forms, they can help harvest or ruin an entire crop.
The pooka is a skilled shapeshifter, capable of assuming various pleasant or terrifying forms. A pooka can take a human form, but then will often have animal features, such as ears or a tail. It will most commonly appear as a horse, cat, rabbit, goat, or dog,or something in between, and almost always has a dark coat.
The pooka is a creature associated with the Samhain harvest festival, when the last of the crops are brought in. Often the reapers leave a small share of the crop as “The Pooka’s Share” to placate the beasts.

 

*Housekeeping note: This image was painted in ink, and for some reason refused to scan without being blurry. I had to take a photo of the page so it is a bit blurry for that reason as well, but believe me, it still looks better.
I should probably leave some grain out for the pooka.

Expedition Everest at Disney’s Animal Kingdom: Not a Model Of Everest!

Expedition_Everest.jpg
Even though my vertigo is too bad to ride the ride anymore, I love Expedition: Everest at Walt Disney’s Animal Kingdom, as displayed in this post from our annual trip last year.
But something has always bugged me…I have read a lot of articles and watched many documentaries about Mount Everest(I still can’t really explain my fascination), and I would always look at the ride and think, “That doesn’t look a thing like Everest”. NOW I KNOW WHY.

The ride’s mountain is a model, not of Mount Everest, but of the Forbidden Mountain, which was created specifically for the ride. Totally fictional location. It is guarded by the yeti in the story created by Walt Disney Imagineering that revolves around the attraction. Everest is actually present, however.  It is represented by the barren background peak on the far right, which is made to seem far in the distance in forced perspective. (see red circle) Now THAT looks like the north face of Everest, also known in Nepal as Sagarmāthā and in Tibet as Chomolungma.

Tada! Mystery solved!