Tell Me About the Bed! Leggings
Tell me about the Bed!
A long time ago I worshipped at a German Lutheran Church in Belfast where most of the congregation were German, and spoke in German. I no longer spoke German by then, yet all the same I could discern sometimes the meaning of it, as I wallowed amongst the words.
A few years ago I lived in a haunted cottage with a back well of trees – and it was about this time I became aware of the three of them. A German family of Father, Mother and daughter. The family looked German, slightly like Tommy and Freda, the Belfast opticians, that we knew well. They lingered sometimes behind me, turned up in front of me, seemed aware of where I was heading.
I went to see a deserted house, which I was interested in, being of the opinion that if it were deserted I could reasonably claim it through the council scheme*. The Father and Mother were standing right in front of it, a co-incident? I watched them from a distance. They were discussing something.
He said, bitterly, “It was the very last one we had, now we've nothing left, doesn't she know that?”
She returned bitingly, “It's in the bed. She must know to get rid of the bed. We can get it back then!”
They saw me then and moved away. I moved closer to the house and looked in sideways. I didn't want to make it that obvious. It was unkempt. Untidy garden and a general sense of decay. I noted down the number and position of the house for the council web page.
Across the road, the two of them were still glaring at me. I had this new bed. They were, apparently intent on having my new four poster metal bed!
The bed was comfortable, although at first, the cottage didn't seem to like it much. It provoked much activity under the house. Sharp hard beams had attacked the base of the bed. It began to make a thin whistling noise. Some nights I'd awake to the noise of a washing machine near by, forever spinning. Other nights to voices resounding through the night. I began to wonder if the bed would ever be just a bed.
I told myself I was being silly, and kept the bed. It was a comfy bed, good mattress. The few times I saw the people again, they were still on about the bed...
I got, “People usually put them in storage for years and years. We get it back then!”
and again, “You'd think she'd work out that its frying her brain, wouldn't you!”
They were wistful reminders of a hard past. It was as if, they'd come in from the 1960's and didn't fit. Their clothing was wrong, his too formal, hers too dowdy, the colours too faded.
The bed moved into a small flat with me, I put it together again. I made sure it was tight. I tried to
'earth' it to the wall, for the noises were beginning to worry me. Was it electric in origin? Or was it wired to a satellite up above?
From then on the noises became louder and more insistent, the family kept coming over and dropping hints again. They seemed no older than the last time – yet a period of nearly 10 years had passed. They wanted the bed.
I dropped as I went passed, that I was thinking of a new bed, and might scrap this one. This information caused loud cries of indignation. Surely I thought they could buy the bed from the scrap iron-man, if the bed was what they were after...
Or were they after the storage... since they wanted the bed in storage – or did they want the bed in storage so they knew where it was... the mind boggles, why did this strange family want the bed?
Some nights ago, I half took down the 4 poster bits, leaving the bed lower down, the noises are reduced and I'm able to sleep again.
* Most UK district councils have a page on the web where you can report empty houses and say you would like to live there. They check out the ownership of the house, and if has been empty long enough with no owner, they'll let you know if you can. To prove title (ownership) of the empty house you have to live in it, and pay rent for ten years. The rent is kept separate in case the owner turns up, if not you get it back to do up the property.