Thursday, January 22, 2009

Fairy Stories

This appears as "An Urban Fairy Tale" and is lifted from the site.It is in Ann Arbor.

" Our fairytale home on the Old West Side came as a wonderful backdrop for a child’s story. At over 100 years old, the floors creaked. Actually, the floors tipped. The center rooms of the house changed elevation by about 2 inches for every 4 feet. Though the Historic Commission deemed there to be “no historical significance” to our home, we began repairing, renovating and expanding it.

With each new home improvement there appeared a surprise. At the time of our first major expansion, my wife, Kathleen, was running a pre-school program in our home. As part of that expansion, I put in a closet door under the stairs and adjacent to it, a child-size one to access the wedge of space there. Just to the right of the junior door, down in the baseboard, the kids discovered yet another door about 6 inches high. When it was open, one could see an equally small staircase and railing leading up to a second door. The upper door, as far as we know, is always locked. The children were fascinated and would report their sightings, including that of a Lion-Mouse!

After I built our fireplace, our daughters discovered one more door. It opened onto a room with its own tiny fireplace, and a curving stairway leading to a balcony sporting a door. There was yet another door leading off of the first room, which when opened, revealed a landing and a checkered floor beyond. A small window looked into the space from the end of the mantel. On some days, a light goes on in the far room. The day of the discovery our youngest, Delaney, shouted, “Look, it’s their trash day!” and held up a transparent plastic bag filled with sawdust and other diminutive construction waste. Our eldest, Samuelina, made an ingenious probe of two pick-up-sticks and a keychain light bound with rubber bands to explore the depths.

At the time our kitchen was remodeled, it was less surprising that a Lilliputian room was found below one of the new columns. This was a room with a double hung window giving a view of our breakfast area. In the room, there was a wee black chair with a red cushion, matching our human sized ones. Again, this room had another door leading to some unknown chamber, hall or space. At this time, Kathleen had been teaching kindergarten for several years, and on one of the annual visits I was asked, “Mister Wright - could you move the book case? I think they may have a door behind there.”

Recently, I heard muffled noises in the gabled end of the breakfast area. Squirrels? Mice? Birds? Super-chubby-sewer-dwelling Raccoons? I don’t think so. I am keeping my eyes peeled for Urban Fairies.

It’s all about building homes.

Of course, since this was written, the balconey with french doors appeared in that part of the breakfast area." ~jbw 6.08.06

From History To Present:

"...Another curious bit of evidence regarding fairies lies in the heart of Dunvegan Castle, ancestral home of the MacLeods clan, on the Isle of Skye. This regards the "Fairy Flag of Dunvegan" which is known to have supernatural properties. There are several stories that are told regarding the history of this flag. In the best known version of the story, three times could its possessors wave it to 'call for help' in distress and the Fairy folk would come to aid. It is said the fairies themselves made the first call when they introduced the Flag as they wrapped the infant MacLeod in it when he was at the point of death. The infant recovered.

It has only been waved one other occasion. The second time it was waved, it rallied MacLeod's men to victory in war in Waternish in 1520. Not much is curently left of the Fairy Flag of Dunvegan. There are many small pieces cut from it about the size of postage stamps. When the MacLeod warriors went into battle again in WWII, some of them took bits of the flag for magical protection. It is said that those who had pieces of the flag with them returned from the war alive.

There it is,Fairy Stories.


The Empty Envelope said...

Wonderful stories!!

We once lived in a house adjacent to a green house. There was a mysterious locked door off of the kitchen and I was convinced that it was full of old men sitting around a table. I thought they were Presidents. I used to peer through the key hole and what I saw was very dark and green.

I was 5. I should try to paint it some time!

UniqueNurseGranny said...

Do, that would be gteat.