Maybe this is a reflection of my age and the decade that I grew up within as a child but what has happened to the art of card shuffling?
When conducting a Tarot reading, I tend to always ask the client to shuffle the deck whilst thinking about what they need to know but I am becoming increasingly surprised at the amount of people who cannot shuffle a deck of cards.
For those coming for a Tarot reading, it really isn't a big deal if they can't shuffle very well but I do begin to wonder what they did during power cuts because I thought everyone played cards as a child!
In fact, this one was on the very skills that my lovely nan taught me.
I can still visualise her sitting in her chair by the wood fire steadily shuffling her pack of playing cards and myself fixated on the methodical motion of which she cut the deck repetedly, mixing the cards in a very skillful overhand shuffle.
'Watch closely', she would say whilst talking through the importance of mixing the cards up properly. She gradually built the momentum up, sliding out a selected group of cards sideways from her left hand, placing them randomly back into the deck, shuffling and repeating the process for several minutes.
Then it was my turn and as expected, the first few times were co ordinated in utter awkwardness, with cards falling to the floor and flying out of the deck at all angles!
However, being genetically predisposed with OCD, I was not beat for too long, the school holidays allowed for much practise and within a few days I was shuffling like a pro ( well not quite! ).
Card games were frequent in our family, especially when I stayed over at my Nan and Grandad's, which was almost always because I only lived next door in the adjoining 2 up 2 down.
It was actually quite usual for some of her friends to come over for card games although they did play for money where as I played for matchsticks.
Didn't all nans teach their grandchildren to shuffle a deck of cards?
I was taught many things by my nan and most of them were probably not conventionally taught to many grandchildren but needless to say, I am eternally grateful for the skills that I learnt from mine.
To conclude, even though I do like the client to shuffle, I have pretty much decided that in future, I shall keep shuffling myself and probably fan the cards out onto the cloth and ask them to pick their own cards, I think that this is a good compromise .