Thursday 8 February 2024
In 2017 the new fairy census was published containing 500 alleged encounters with these remarkable entities. Five years have passed, and now a second fairy census is available, also containing 500 entries, starting from number 501. Although I haven't performed a statistical analysis, my impression is that the second census contains more dubious material. It seems that the site has been brought to the attention of more people who are uncritical, who see things out of the corner of their eyes, or in the penumbra surrounding sleep, or in altered states of awareness, or who have strange, visionary, New Age type ideas. And I am still puzzled that so many adults remember encounters when they were children as genuine. I'm not saying that children may not be more psychically aware than adults. It is just that, if I had seen a real fairy when I was a little boy, I'm sure that by now I would have convinced myself that I had been mistaken, or had imagined it.
Unless, of course, the experience was as vivid as these.
Saturday 6 January 2024
The drunk throws away the empty bottle, the smoker discards the empty packet, but a book addict never throws away anything. Thus it is that I still have many of the books I read and enjoyed fifty years ago, and since my backlog of reading material is almost finished, I have had the chance to read and enjoy them once again. One of these was Mitsinari, twenty-one years among the Papuans by André Dupeyrat (translated by Erik and Denyse deMauny for Beacon Books, 1957). A version was published in the US as Savage Papua. Some of the events he recorded were quite unforgettable, and ten years ago I shared with you his story of the man who apparently turned himself into a cassowary. However, on rereading it, I came across other very strange happenings.