Real life Narnia experiences
For the past few years since I have been swimming 3x/week, I thought about starting this topic—something you have experienced in real life that reminds you of something in Narnia.
Mine is this: At the end of each invigorating swim, I lay on my back and skull towards the shallow end. When I stop skulling, I keep on floating towards the edge, and have realized that as I am smoothly moving along, my body cannot feel the water around me. This vividly reminds me of Aslan blowing Jill and Eustace by his breath to Narnia. I can imagine this could be quite similar to what it was like, for it really feels like I am floating on nothing, yet moving swiftly along. For a few minutes, then, at the conclusion of each length swim, I close my eyes and imagine myself on Aslan's breath, being blown to Narnia.
Have you had anything in your life that puts you in strong mind of something in the Chronicles?
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Well, the last time we had a decent snowstorm, I went out and walked among snow covered trees... until I came to our streetlamp, which just happens to be a lamppost (albeit electric.) It was all very quiet and somehow mysterious, much like Lucy's first Narnian experience in LWW.
PS: Great thread idea! I'm guessing lots of folks on Narniaweb are gonna have stories for this!
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My real life Narnia experience was on the April 2015 trip we made to the ANZAC Centenary Commemoration at Gallipoli, near to Istanbul, which we also visited. In a trip to the Grand Bazaar we went down an aisle of that very busy bizarre bazaar where we found a shop window with heaps of silver jewellery, advertising Aslan's Jewellery. Behind us & opposite Aslan's Jewellery was a shop, one of many Turkish delight vendors, in that particular passage, advertising Turkish Delight, in various flavours from the traditional rose water to apricot, lemon, orange & pistachio flavours, as well as other goodies like Baklava or Tabbouleh. On that trip, some of our fellow travellers had also bought there a dress-up outfit for their young daughter, complete with those Turkish-style upturned slippers, that looked stunningly like the one Aravis wore in HHB from Lazaraleen's home to across the desert. It was the sort of outfit with a short bolero style jacket & harem trousers, worn by those girls who lived & worked in the old Topkapi Palace, itself reminiscent of the Tisroc's Palace, including a gate onto the Golden Horn below it. Then on our return to Istanbul, to catch a plane to Paris, the waiter at the small hotel we stayed at was also called Aslan. These days Turkey is no longer the Ottoman empire & is a Republic, headed currently by President Recep Tayyip Erduagan, but Istanbul's pre-WW1 heritage was eerily like how I imagined Calormen.
Totally, Cleander! When a certain type of snow falls—big, thick, fluffy flakes—my pet name for this is "Narnia snow". And my ongoing love for winter only helps. How cool (in more ways then one ) you had that memorable experience with the streetlamp amidst the snow-covered trees. Whenever it snows, I always look around for a light (yes, albeit electric), because the amazing look of the snow coming down in that warm glow seems definitely LWW Narnian.
Wow, those are quite the Narnian experiences, wagga!
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Growing up I went to a bible camp. There was a random lamp post in the middle of a wooded area. Each year I would sit by it in the evenings when everyone was doing activities or at the snack shack and wait for someone to come get me and take me to Narnia....Tumnus never showed up. However I was sure he was in the woods watching!
I believe in Christianity as I believe in the sun: not only because I see it, but by it I see everything else. -C.S. Lewis
Well, the last time we had a decent snowstorm...
My thoughts exactly! I grew up in an area that gets tons of snow, so I've had plenty of "real-life Narnia experiences" related to LWW. I think my favorite was this camping trip. We hiked over hills and through woods, and I really felt like I was on an adventure in Narnia. I've had others, but that one was definitely my favorite.
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I feel like the past 10 years of my life have been associated with real-life Narnia experiences. Ever since my family and I have moved into our second home, we've felt like our backyard was basically the Great Woods. Literally right outside our house is one of the largest urban parks in Canada, and I am and always have been forever grateful for it! Practically every weekend I walk in the park for hours, because I can't get enough of it! I always feel like I am exploring one of the forests of Narnia. Quite often, crazy-me even pretends that I actually am in Narnia and I am going on an adventure.
If I'm lucky I see many beautiful animals such as badgers, cougars, owls, etc. However, I often see deer and ducks almost every time.
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Those experiences all sound very evocative, Trufflepuff, Geekicheep, fledge1!
This morning when I was out for my early morning walk, there was mist/fog in the lower places, but in the north I saw a strange dark cloud rolling in. It looked so unusual, in that it wasn't just up in the air ... it came right to the ground. This reminded me vividly of the Dark Island, and I waited out by my favourite dawn-viewing place amongst the fields to watch it roll over me. It was almost freaky ... I disappeared into that cloud and all scenery vanished in its wake. While I didn't know fear like they did at the Dark Island in Voyage, it was quite a surreal and cool (literally and figuratively) experience.
And now, a few hours later, the spring sun has burned away those low-lying clouds. But I did not notice an albatross.
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Transferring posts from Forum 2.0:
This wasn't exactly a real-life Narnia experience, but it was certainly something in our world that reminded me of the Chronicles... a couple of times last week, I was heading into North London to do some home caregiving visits, and as I was driving on the North Circular Road, I noticed one of the intersections was called Colney Hatch. I recognised the name at once and quickly remembered where I knew it from — in The Magician's Nephew, when Jadis is on the rampage in London and demands to be acknowledged as Empress, someone in the crowd sarcastically hails her with "Three cheers for the Hempress of Colney 'Atch" (bit of Cockney there for you — and "Colney", by the way, is pronounced "Coney").
As for why they said that, I vaguely recalled hearing this somewhere before, but have just confirmed it from Wikipedia:The area became well known from the mid-19th century following the building of Colney Hatch Lunatic Asylum, which gained such notoriety that the name "Colney Hatch" appeared in various terms of abuse associated with the concept of madness.
Interesting to have an authentic historical snippet thrown in there — I would guess Lewis probably knew the term from his own childhood in the Edwardian era. Also interestingly, the original asylum building is still there, though it's now been converted to luxury flats. Probably a much nicer place to live now!
That is so interesting, Courtenay. Thanks for the background of Colney Hatch! The building is beautiful now, wow!
It is, isn't it? Victorian-era buildings usually are very elaborate and decorative, even if they were built for very practical purposes. One of the things I most appreciate about living in the UK is being able to see all these historic buildings and places, many of which feature in my favourite books or at least remind me of them.
That's fascinating Courtenay!
I guess that adds a little more meaning to that guy's taunt- if Colney Hatch was the location of an asylum, it's almost like he's calling Jadis the Queen of Bedlam!
It's not something most of us American readers would notice right away. Thanks for pointing that out!
None to speak of. I guess - two reasons I can't quite get the Narnia books out of my head is because (1) I've never experienced Narnia myself and (2) I have never felt the happiness that the main characters are described as feeling in The Narnia Chronicles. Yet instead of souring me, it gives me comfort that, at least, these fictional boys and girls can become as happy as they do. Real life Narnia Experience: None to my memory, unless you count struggling in the shadowlands. Thanks.