February 7th, 2002

Photo - leaves

at last!

for four years, something has been really bugging me.

in year 10, my mum and i went backpacking, and we ended up in castleton (which as the residential week people will remember, is in the peak district). castleton, ironically enough, does have a castle, peveril.

it's at the top of a very big hill with lots of steps and a path to get to it, and all that's left is the keep; the rest is completely ruined apart from a few bits of walls. anyway, to get into this keep, there's a spiral staircase on the outside that leads to a little triangular ledge with a railing on it, and then another staircase in the wall that leads to the bottom of the keep itself. the only door is the one at the top where the first staircase leads inside, so to get out, you have to go the same way you came in.

when standing on this ledge, i did the usual thing you do. i rattled the railing to make sure it was secure (what's with that, anyway?) it was. however, i suddenly felt the most bizarre urge to get the hell off that ledge right that second. i can't explain it, but i just had to get down onto the ground below, and preferably not by being pushed off. unfortunately, at that precise moment, about 50 other people were making their way down and i was effectively trapped, right against this railing, the only thing between me and the hard concrete floor beneath me. the longer i stood there, the bigger the urge got that i had to get down. not leave, you notice, just get down.

finally, i got down the second flight of stairs. by this time i was a complete wreck, in fact, i remember a feather falling from the sky and terrifying the life out of me because i was so jumpy. when i'd calmed down a little, i decided i just had to get out of the damn place because it was having a very strange effect on me. unfortunately, that entailed going back up to the little balcony...

i managed it, barely, keeping my back to the wall (as it was, the ledge was only about a foot or so wide, so i was still near the edge) until i could get down the stairs. i didn't run, i was very calm.

as soon as i was out, i was perfectly fine, but the whole incident really freaked me out, and i spent the day looking in the shops trying to find out any information. had someone died? was there some strange incident? i couldn't find anything.

for four years, ever since, i've wondered what the frell happened that day. and today, thanks to my storytelling module lecturer and a book he brought in, "Supernatural Peak District", i've found out.

he very kindly lent me the book for the week, and i reproduce for you here what i discovered...

(taken from Supernatural Peak District by David Clarke
Pages 92-94 (edited, with appropriate part emboldened)

"Human heads carved in stone are as important in Peakland folklore as the haunted skulls which have featured prominently in the tales and traditions of centuries past. Of uncertain age, these expressionless stone faces gaze out from barn gables, field walls and gateways, guarding thresholds and warding off the evil eye...

...The very appearance of some heads with their fearsome horns, scowling mouths and blank staring eyes may have encouraged the belief that they could be used to keep evil away from the house, and act as guardian spirits of the land. A number are associated with ghosts and white witchcraft where their function is a talisman against evil. In other instances, heads appear to have been deliberately buried because of the evil presence they were thought to have absorbed. One of the best known examples from the Peak District was found in a wall below the ruins of Peveril Castle in Castleton, which dates from the Norman Conquest..."

spooky, huh? i knew there was something there. i just knew it...

(and, for anyone who's interested, here's a picture of said castle. it's just how i remember it, and in this one you can see the staircase on the outside, and the only point of entry at the top...)
Photo - leaves

(no subject)

apparently, the top three finalists are now decided on the fanfic awards. unfortunately, i have no clue whether i'm included because
a) the site's links are dead for the moment
and
b) another.com (the inbox being used for information for said awards) is being a complete and utter tralk, and throwing up it's 404 whenever i try to log in...

anyway, the site is here, if i'm in the top three (ha!) and if it ever gets itself up and running again...
Photo - leaves

queen of the damned.

for the 'scapers (or even anyone who just watches it on occasion), here's something truly bizarre. (yes, it's aeryn. yes, she's in the "queen of the damned" movie.)

HOW COOL??

anyway, read the production diary. it's funnneeee...

i think i shall see it and sit in the back row and giggle all the way through ;)