When we were little, my sisters and I believed in fairies. Not an unusual fantasy in little girls, I wouldn’t say, but we were really quite passionate in our belief they were real! We had never seen one, but were completely convinced not only that they were real, but that they lived in the overgrown wilds at the back end of our garden, sleeping in mossy beds and having ladybirds as pets. We used to leave them little gifts of fairly slipper flowers and tiny bouquets of forget-me-nots tied with a blade of grass, and squealed with delight when they had vanished in the morning. Of course they most likely had blown away in the wind or been feasted on by birds and insects, but we were certain the fairies had claimed them for their own and took it as definitive proof of their existence!
Obviously I’m a little old to believe in fairies these days, but any time I’m in a quiet piece of woodland I’m transported back to those years and I still find the peace and tranquility there sort of magical. Last week as I walked Bonnie through a little spot near our home I was hit by an incredible sense of nostalgia, and I’m not sure why exactly. Whether it was the low sun shining through the trees and dappling the ground, the sweet little snowdrops fighting the uncharacteristic cold and pushing up into the light or the sweet smell of mulchy leaves, but I almost felt like a child again and it was a lovely feeling. Bonnie too is a huge fan of woodland, loving to fossick through the undergrowth (can we all just appreciate what a great word ‘fossick’ is, by the way. Thanks Mum for introducing that one to my vocabulary). I think perhaps she shares my sense that something mystical could be going on in the thick of the growing vines and tree roots. It’s no wonder so many fairy tales are set there.
For a moment I almost could have believed in fairies again!