Friday, January 28, 2011

Weird in the Woods: The Home in the Woods

An appropriate place to reference total chaos 

The year is 1971. Two 14 year old boys venture into their local woods to do what we all do when were young. As they plodded along something seemed to appear from behind a curtain of vegetation. A small two story house stood in front of them. There were no roads or trails leading to this house. Its white paint was pristine and showed no marks of damage or abuse from the elements. The beautiful green trim gave the doors and windows a unique charm that was finalized by its stone chimney. It was truly a quaint little home.

What happened next is an event that we all would question the motive of. The two boys climbed the black steel stairs to the entrance of home. They stood with their hands cupped around their eyes against the French glass door. It was dark inside and the sunlight that they stood in only created shadows inside the home obscuring their already limited view. The mysterious allure began to eat at them and agreed to search for more options. While standing at the top of the stair case they looked at the door knob. “It’d be too easy.” they thought as if trying to convince themselves to leave. One boy reached out and gripped the door knob. He gave it a sudden jerk as if expecting it to resist. His wrist rotated with the door knob until reached the end of the rotation. The shock of it left him slightly stunned for a moment. After quickly glancing up, he slowly pushed the door open.

It was dark but as they opened the door the sunlight seemed to illuminate the room. There they found a sofa with a small table set in front of it. As they crept deeper into the home they found it fully furnished and neat but the feeling of life seemed to be missing. It was as if everything had been there for all of time undisturbed. The pair slowly and quietly eased another door open. On the other side was a fully furnished bedroom. The light from outside came into this room through the windows casting large shadows. A dresser was against the wall; on this dresser was an array of organized perfume bottles. They had crossed the line; the house at that very moment took up a personality. They knew that someone was, or did, occupy that home but the fact that they were nowhere to be found while having no obvious intention to leave was puzzling. The boys stood in silence before one uttered “Jack…. We don’t belong here.” That was clear. The two left the home as was and departed.

These two boys were my father and his brother Jack. As they grew up the house was nothing too special. Every time they had seen it after while off-roading on their Honda SL-90’s there seemed to be no change. Years later, in the 1980’s, my mother woke my father up from a sound sleep. “There’s a fire across the street!” she cried in amazement. While recapping the only thought my dad could recall was “Sucks for them.” Whether “them” being the possible occupant of the house or the local fire department having to fight through the woods to put out the fire is unclear.

The remains of the house today.

To this day there are no records of the fire, no local stories of the occupant, and no idea how the fire was started. It remains a rarely visited local mystery even though it is in plain sight. As I type this I can just barely make out the chimney through the bare trees and snow. The remains of this home seem to now be part of the environment. Quietly they sit slowly deteriorating, showing no signs of the once ideal dwelling it used to be.

A close up on the steel stairs my father and his brothers stood on before they entered.

Looking through what would be a French door
Note collapsed roof and floor

View from inside the house where a fallen tree has smashed through the wall

My dad does not remember there being a deck which one could argue that it means someone still lived there when they entered and later had it built. However, the fact that the collapsed deck here shows no signs of burns suggest it may be a collapsed over-hang made by kids after the fire

The entrance used now

My father is also unsure of this swing set being there when he found the house. When they were inside the house they found no evidence of children 

A door way crushed by fallen debris

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