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Rockie Horoscope

Flip flop. Retrograde Mercury is already at a standstill before officially turning direct Sunday afternoon. Until it does, be patient with yourself and anyone blocking your way; a frustrating situation can repeat on Wednesday, when Mercury and restrictive Saturn again form a difficult square. Sunday is also the day a new lunar cycle begins; the sun and moon meet at 13 Libra - the degree at which Mercury turned retrograde three weeks ago. Whatever you were into on September 14 can suddenly become important again. Also on the verge of putting you on edge: Venus turns retrograde in sexy Scorpio on 10/10 for six weeks; Saturn in late Gemini flips on 10/11 for four months.

Aries

While the sun and moon meet this weekend in your Libra house of partners, figure out which aspect of a close relationship you need to concentrate on. And then get to work; it's actually possible to attain a degree of harmony you haven't shared before. Of course, compromises will have to be made, but even the most stick-to-your-guns, single-minded Ram should be able to bend a little. Otherwise there might be a complete breakdown in a health matter, your work routine or conversation when your Mars ruler faces the rigors Saturn imposes next weekend.

Taurus

Mercury turns direct in your house of "teach the children well." That's also the place where lovers and playmates dwell, so once the Messenger flips, you may hear from an ex or two, especially one with whom you still have some type of financial involvement. This is a good time to reconsider what you want from a relationship and what you are willing to bring to it. Your Venus ruler, turning retrograde in your Scorpio house of partners for six weeks, will provide time and reasons to explore the nature of your fears and desires.

Gemini

It's the riff running through your head, what you're telling yourself, not what someone else says, that can do the most damage. So while stern Saturn and your supersensitive Mercury ruler are at cross purposes this week, when you feel your spirits flag or your self-esteem tank, remind yourself that, like all things mercurial, this, too, shall pass. Thankfully, after three weeks in reverse, Mercury turns direct on Sunday; Saturn in your sign flips next Thursday. Meanwhile, the Libra new moon introduces another round of fun and games.

Cancer

Mercury turning direct in your house of communication, education and travel suggests that you'll be taking a road trip or a class fairly soon. Getting the computer up to snuff could be a problem this week, because Mercury-related matters are being thwarted by the planet's square to restrictive Saturn. However, the Libra new moon should provide a reason to make your place more attractive and conducive to a couple-oriented social life. No, you don't have to buy a bigger bed just yet. Wait till you see what retrograde Venus drags in.

Leo

Hang with the neighbors, check in with a sibling, check out a local festival. The weekend is custom-made for Lions who want to take it easy and simply have a good time. And since your sun ruler and generous Jupiter are favorably aligned, there can be a financial reward as well. Midweek, your interest shifts to more solitary pleasures, such as solving mysteries or indulging in a secret passion. And while you might not spend a lot of time at these pursuits, know that they are integral to a circle that'll be completed in December.

Virgo

Mercury retrograde goes direct on Sunday to once again face matters that have been on hold since mid-September. If you feel pressured to deal with them more responsibly than you have in the past, take a deep breath, twiddle your thumbs and wait for a few days to pass. Your ruling planet will slip out from under the influence of stern, straight-laced Saturn before next weekend. Meanwhile, be sure to focus during the Libra new-moon period on your value system - what you think you want, what you really need, what will bring you pleasure.

Libra

No matter when you celebrate your birthday, on the day itself or the closest weekend, be sure to take a minute on Sunday - anytime after the sun meets the moon in Libra (4:17 a.m. PDT/7:17 a.m. EDT) - to focus on what you want to happen during this lunar cycle. You can make a wish, light the stove, raise a glass of O.J. and run water over the dishes; just do something to mark the occasion, preferably something that uses fire, air, earth and water. And while the rest of us may be encouraged to make new-moon magic, our rituals won't have the impact that yours will.

Scorpio

Retrograde Mercury changes direction in your house of casual friendships, group affiliation and sociopolitical objectives. Does this mean you intend to vote? Don't be surprised if, after three weeks of reconsidering, you've digested Mercury's rhetoric and reviewed the data. Once the Messenger moves forward and picks up speed, you may become more vocal about your preferences, more specific about what can be done. Rational Mercury leaves detail-driven Virgo next Thursday for Libra, the sign that seeks justice and peace. By Election Day, it'll be in Scorpio.

Sagittarius

Like Leo, you can enjoy a relaxing weekend, and maybe receive an unexpected prize, simply because your Jupiter ruler is favored by the sociable Libra sun. Gamblers could head for the nearest casino while luck is masquerading as a Libra lady. The new moon on Sunday may introduce you to a group of friendly folks who'll make the changes some Sages are going through more enjoyable or easier to take. Saturn in your marriage house turning retrograde should relegate a partnership problem to the back burner for a nice long while.

Capricorn

This week may be tricky. Mercury flipping from one direction to another often causes confusion, but since its turnaround on Sunday is sandwiched between two challenging aspects to your Saturn ruler, you may be affected more than most. The information you receive on Thursday can be reversed by Tuesday, so, above all else, don't act quickly and certainly not without confirmation. Patience, besides being the key to heaven, is also the key to getting the work done correctly. Saturn goes retrograde on the 11th until - no lie - Washington's Birthday.

Aquarius

Other voices, other rooms, other people's money. Rumors you may overhear this week should be carefully checked out. Mercury flipping in your house of investment, insurance and inheritance can misspeak and therefore throw you off course. And while you are protected by Jupiter in Leo, your sign of significant others, for many months to come, independent Aquarians are ultimately responsible for their own actions. You decide whether you're also responsible for the advice you give others. Better hedge your bets and issue disclaimers.

Pisces

While bossy Mars travels through your Virgo house of partners, there's bound to be opposition and friction, but also heat. Make the most of the excitement being generated, because after Mars moves on to Libra midmonth, peace, harmony and frivolous fun might follow. And where's the drama in that? Also, milk this week's planetary flip-outs for all they're worth. Venus' and Saturn's reversals can ease relations with parents, landlords and women withholding secrets. Mercury's turnaround opens the lines of communication.


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