A few days ago, I found myself in a most peculiar situation. I was able to take my dog for a walk, alone, for the first time in about two months. Usually we have children in tow, and our walks are limited to visiting the park, or using footpaths that are pushchair friendly. So I was exhilarated on this particular excursion, when I was able to wander off the beaten path, and explore our local woodland with my dog.
We are fortunate to live near a site of historical interest. It is a field that once housed a Roman settlement, and so the land is protected by heritage laws. It is a popular place for walking dogs, since it is bordered by the river and some natural woodland on two sides. I was walking along the lower section of the field, near to the river, when I looked up and saw a copse of trees in front. They border the roman field, and we usually walk past them. This time, however, the trees spoke to me. They beckoned, and I followed.
Walking up the hillside, I watched in surprise as the leaves rustled and fluttered in wind that had not previously been present. They flapped to and fro in such a manner that I fancied they were waving at me. The rustling sound was almost like fairy voices, whispering to me. I stepped closer, looked down, and discovered a gap in the trees that formed a natural doorway shaped to fit my body.
I stepped through. It was oddly quiet within the circle. I stepped over some protruding roots, avoided a few wild thorns, and surveyed this alien place. I could feel a dozen pairs of eyes watching me from their hiding places. I expected to see another human, but there was nobody. My dog had scampered ahead and disappeared out the other side. He waited on the roman field, watching me. I was surprised that he didn’t bark at me to hurry up, which he normally does. It was as though he felt the magic too, and he knew that I was supposed to be there.
Moments later I emerged on the other side, out in the sunshine, and back into the buzz of human life. Nothing especially spooky had happened inside that copse of trees. But I had felt the magic. I knew that my fairy kin were in there, waiting. I knew that I would return there sometime soon, and that perhaps each time I visit, something new will happen. I walked away with a spring in my step, a smile on my face, and a renewed appreciation for the magic of the hidden world. Thank you, Mother Gaia.
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