Those wretched, rotten, accursed (f…ing) fairies are threatening to take up residence in my garden!
For years I have looked in astonishment, amazement and disgust at the vomit-inducing and incongruous bad taste shown by those who placed fairies, fairy doors, fairy houses, fairy paraphernalia etc. in their gardens. It has baffled and bewildered me that adults could find these appealing and could consider they added to their gardens. The Royal Horticultural Society has banned the use of gnomes in any competition gardens at their shows for many years and I truly hope they extend this ban to include fairies – though, I believe there is some softening of approach re the gnomes. Yes, standards are dropping!
Children seem to have always enjoyed fairy stories and, of late, there is a growing interest in these, in fairy books, fairy figures, fairy doors and such like and it is good innocent fun for them and loving adults will play along for the sake of amusing and pleasing the children. Adults will often be childlike for the sake of the children – normal behaviour – but when adults are childish I find it very peculiar. The beliefs children might have regarding fairies are acceptable because they are children but it always strikes me as very odd when adults begin entertaining such beliefs and start acting accordingly. Reports of adults on an early morning “let’s listen to the dawn chorus” when the chorus is expected from the fairies of the garden or of listening to the fairy music and dancing to it leave me wondering if these people are simple minded or simply stark raving mad.
While there are fools there are people who will have their money – the fool and his money are soon parted! – and there are now companies, it seems, who manufacture fairy doors and other bits and pieces for these susceptible unfortunates. Some gardens go so far as to make a theme of these fairy features, an attraction, something to draw in the paying public and, though I would like to imagine that the adults are visiting purely to amuse their children I fear it is not always the case. At times I despair at the poor taste shown in some gardens and at others for society itself when a belief in these little spirits is becoming so widespread. On the other hand such beliefs in fairies parallel those of many religions, a sort of pseudo religion of sorts and, perhaps, I should not scoff at them – but I am only doing so in fun!
With this connection to religion in mind I still recall, from my school-teacher days, the comment of that child, wise beyond his years, who, when he heard the teacher explaining to those children about to receive the host on the day of their First Communion that they would, in fact, be partaking of the body and blood of Christ, burst out laughing. When questioned by the teacher as to why he had laughed he replied, “Well, that story is right up there with the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus”. He was my kind of child!
So, what is the immediate relevance of all this waffle I am pouring out? The fact is that I am about to make and install a number of these Fairy Doors in my own garden. No, I have not found religion, the Fairy Religion, nor taken complete leave of my senses but I have a granddaughter who loves and adores Fairy Doors! That’s enough reason for me to put aside all previous thoughts and to embrace Fairydom with enthusiasm – this latter is a wild exaggeration!
We went for a walk yesterday along the Anne River Valley which is in Dunhill, Co. Waterford, and my darling granddaughter was thrilled and excited to find 22 fairy doors en route, pinned to trees, slightly hidden, or on rockfaces and tree stumps. She was so excited in her search and discovery that when she said we would have to look for the fairy doors in our garden I realised I would have to oblige.
She has a fairy door in her bedroom and the most wonderful Fairy Godmother who writes the most perfect letters to her, telling her how loved she is, what a wonderful girl she is, praising her for her behaviour on this occasion or that, recommending good behaviour at coming events and being her kindest companion, friend and guide. It is no wonder she loves the fairies!
I am determined that the fairy doors in our garden will be small, home-made, inconspicuous and well hidden and hope that visitors to the garden do not think I have lost the last of my mental faculties, good judgement and good taste but realise that I have a granddaughter who is loved, adored and deserving of all the fairy doors I can make.