Twists Within the Ups and Downs

They say the first step is all it takes to launch the future of your dreams. They also say that first step is the hardest.

It isn’t only steps into the future that prove difficult. Trying to get up to the rooms in the top of the Right Turret is just as hard – if not more so.

The Right Turret (pictured here on the left as the photo is from the back of the Mansion!) has an unusual Spiral Staircase that runs up (or down, depending on the way you are going!) with an added twist. Yes, you read that correctly. A Spiral Staircase with a twist. Two twists, actually. The first twist is that the rotation swaps over halfway up/down. You start climbing the stairs in a clockwise direction, and reach the top going round anticlockwise. The same with the descent. Anticlockwise to start, clockwise to finish. It’s as though the Staircase has a one-way policy top and bottom.

If that wasn’t odd enough, when you reach the halfway point, up or down, the bottom step moves itself up to become the top step. so you can end up taking the same step over and over again and not really going anywhere. It took me a while to work that one out. Half a day, actually. It can be an uphill struggle climbing and not going anywhere. Going down is much easier. You can stand where you are and let the steps carry you. Round and round, clockwise of course.

Now, it’s obvious to miss out the middle step, and reach the top quicker, but sometimes the climb is more fun than actually reaching the top in the quickest time.

At the top, however, that’s where the room is. Beyond the heavy wooden door lies the corridor. Yes, a corridor at the top of a Turret with several rooms off each side, and a final staircase at the far end leads to the Very Top.

The Very Top. The room that feels quite daunting to approach, with ominous shadows lurking where shadows shouldn’t. Whispers echo – possibly from the lurking shadows – or more likely from the vastness of the room at the Very Top.

Some ask if it is worth going through all the exertion of climbing to the top just to get to such a room. Sometimes it has to be done.

Even rooms at the top need dusting.

Where

Where are they? Can you see them?

How about now?

You must be able to spot them now:

Two shy little ducks hiding there in the midst of the Swamp. Here’s the first photo again, but this time I’ve revealed their secluded hideaway.

Posted for Debbie’s One Word Sunday.

Questioning Reality: Watt’s flat?

Questioning Reality is an occasional series and is a complete work of fiction.

The views contained herein are nothing whatsoever to do with the author, and instead are based on the views of the character ‘Thom’. Thom is a fifty-year-old gardener who likes talking to begonias. Although, she may be a twenty-eight-year-old secretary who sings spiders to sleep. Or perhaps he’s a 25 year old panel beater who likes the history of Queen Nefertiti.

Names, where necessary, have been changed, but also where necessary, they haven’t.

Historians used to think the world is flat. Not modern historians, I hasten to add, but history’s historians. I don’t think they had time in those days, although they may have used the occasional sundial. Even though the world curved around in front of them, and they were surrounded by hilly hills, they were still of the impression the world was flat. Nothing anybody said to them to convince them otherwise changed their opinion, and fruit and vegetables such as onions, tomatoes and apples hadn’t been invented yet.

They were probably around back then, in history, but went by a multitude of different names. It wasn’t until the mid to late 1600s when a historical figure by the name of John Ray (sometimes Wray) began a vast classification project of plants and animals that existence began to take on a more structured look. From these yellowed pages, onions eventually became a vegetable and tomatoes a fruit. Presumably, before this classification exercise, they were probably known as ‘weepy thing’ or ‘squishy thing’.

Tomatoes may or may not have been red at that time. As the previously mentioned classification project was starting to take place, Isaac Newton, another historical figure, was discovering colour. Back then, red was the most light colour, and blue most dark. Or least light. You see, Isaac was working on light at the time and discovered the spectrum.

Also at the same time, research was beginning into electricity. Electricity had been a myth for thousands of years before this, even back to the times of Ancient Greece and before. Folk were regularly receiving shocks from creatures such as electric fish, or static shocks from stroking cats, but they had no idea what the effect was and put it to the backs of their minds. William Gilbert, yet another of history’s figures, wrote about a magnet in the early 1600s, and came up with the word electricus at the same time due to receiving a static shock after rubbing a piece of amber. (The Greek word for amber back then was ‘elektron’). Electricity now had a name, several years before fruits, vegetables and spectra came into existence.

Many years after the introduction of electricity into mainstream reality, James Watt (yes, another historical chap) discovered horsepower, nowadays shortened to power. The Watt was named after him. Power, in fact, is the rate of work over time, and it certainly took a lot of time for power to come into existence. Incidentally, James Watt wasn’t really looking into electricity, but steam engines.

The historical fruit, tomatoes, are a source of electricity – especially damaged ones. Lycopene, which is the red colouring in tomatoes and other fruit and vegetables, helps with the generation of electrical charges. The charge is only small, however, only 0.3 watts per ten milligrams of tomato waste, but it’s a start.

From a flat world to a flat tomato the world has come a long way.

The connections between everything in existence are quite remarkable, when you stop and take a look.

Next time: We may look at the invention of time.