The first handcrafted “fairy door” appeared in the Wayford Woods near Crewkerne, England, around the year 2000. But later, what had begun as a quaint novelty grew into a headache for the locals, with over 200 doors installed on tree trunks and too many visitors coming to have a look. So a few months ago, the trustees of the charity that owns the woods stepped in and removed all the doors. Like Love Locks in France, when small gestures go viral, their days often become numbered.
In Overland Park, Kansas, much closer to my home, another fairy-door story has unfolded with less attention—at least until now. Maybe you’ve seen the recent link at CNN.com: a photo of a tiny door with the title “A great big beautiful act of kindness.”
If you follow the link, it will take you to The Gnomist, a video made by Great Big Stories and CNN Films. To save you some time I’ve embedded it below.
It’s a story about much more than little doors. It’s about transitions, home, dreams, loss, grief, compassion, anger, endings, and beginnings. Are you familiar with any of these?
Grab a cup of tea or coffee and drink this in.
You can visit the blog The Firefly Forest for updates on the gnome community in Overland Park and to read the story of the blogger shown in the video.
(Steven Morris, “Wayford Woods Closes Its Fairy Doors after Attracting Too Many Visitors,” The Guardian, August 21)
[photo: “Otley Chevin,” by Alice Hutchinson, used under a Creative Commons license]