My Dream House

I’m at home sick today with flu. It’s another grey, cold rainy English day…a blustery fall day in the middle of July. I’ve been devouring books (more of my beloved kids fantasy books, this time a trio of modern faerie tales by Holly Black) while the rain pounds on the roof.

When I was a kid, I used to design my dream house. It was always very romantic, of course – given my addiction to fairytales and fantasy, how could it not be?  It varied from the traditional cottage in the woods to something that a sleeping princess would feel at home in. Given my taste (or complete lack of taste, as some would say) for massive, heavily carved wooden furniture, I should probably choose the latter option.

If I suddenly ever woke up in a universe where I actually had the option to say “why yes, I will have that turreted stone castle, that will suit me just fine”, of course.  :)

I just saw this bedroom suite on eBay:


I love it. I want fireplaces in all the bedrooms, and a round turret room. I want secret staircases and hidden doors. I want a big empty room with nothing in it except for a massive wardrobe filled with antique fur coats. I want motheaten Persian carpets and huge bronze statues. I want white stone lions in the garden, which will have nothing but white flowers in it.

It would have to have a huge attic, of course, filled with chests of clothing and old books. All the mirrors in the house would have ornate gilt frames, and the unsilvering would make them dark and mysterious, as though they could be used for scrying. I want a kitchen with braids of garlic and herbs hanging from the wooden beams, and giant copper pans. I want carved wooden doors, and rooms and hallways which are purely follies: streams running down the centre of a hallway, with bronze book stepping stones. Mirrored rooms. A stuffed animal or two. Cats, not stuffed, would prowl the house and play kings and queens.

The house would sit in the middle of a forest, of course, in the middle of a sunny meadow. I could see horses grazing from my bedroom window, and listen to the trees at night. On full moon nights, the moonlight would pour through all the windows of my round tower room, and I would sleep in a pool of silver light.

I want the place where I always knew I should have grown up…surely it’s not too late to be the kid I should have been.

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