A Short Winter Walk Around Riccarton House


It was not that flash a Saturday today, at least weather wise. While we initially planned to take the boys out to Rakaia Gorge, the wind and whether (just below zero) made this seem like not to much of a great idea. In those situations it seems like help is always on the way, in this case with my brother in law popping in and while still there good friends dropped by after visiting a rifle and gun fair. The planned picnic ended up being held in the living room closely to our nice warm fire.

After lunch still wanting to go out we decided, given the weather, to keep things nice and simple and go to Riccarton Bush for a short walk to get some on that fresh air.

Riccarton Bush and Riccarton House is always a nice short walk, that even the youngest can do as it is only around half an hour. It is always fun as the boys are well aware of the ghost stories that go about this place.

The story is that the ghost John Dean’s wife, Jane Dean is still wandering around the premises, and what more exciting for a young boy than running into the chance that such a ghost would reveal itself behind the window while walking past there. Besides that there always something special to see at Dean’s Bush: a view to the tree tops of some of Kauri trees that have grown there so maginficantly or closer to the ground the incredible roots of the trees in Deans Bush.

No luck this time with any Jane Dean ghosts appearing behind the windows of Riccarton House. But a short visity to the initial Dean’s cottage came with more luck. The cottage is whewre the Deans lived whilst they were building the Riccarton House in which they moved upin completion of the first stage.

“It was of course only when I started developing my photographs that I found this amazing presence that I did not see while I was there”

Here I was thinking that my wife and children were in one of the other rooms while I was looking at the central living room display. But it os now clear that while I was thinking that, the “spirits” of my boys were already away there and actually wandering around in the area that I was trying to get pictures of. So no Dean’s ghosts but insteat I was treated with the wandering spirits of my boys checking out the premises.

It came with some amazing pictures because I “without me realizing it at the time, I had captured the ‘ghosts of my three sons.” Isn’t that just amazing !?!

Looking back, this little walk had turned intro something quite spectacular.

And should you need to sit down and think about what you just experienced: there are some wonderfil spots to do so.

For those of you who are curious about my photographic and editing efforts, a new hobby I picked up, I recommend that you go check out my photostream on flickr at http://www.flickr.com/photos/johndierckx/ There is plenty to be found there or perhaps consider buying a postcard or a number of postcards makde with my pictures here: http://www.zazzle.com/johndierckx.

For now I am still recovering from the shock of seeing my sons’ spirits appear in my lens or was it just the reflection window maybe?

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