As we begin our stroll down the little grassy lane in the cool spring mist let me tell you a bit about this place.
Terra Nova Center was founded by the scrapiest, most charming, elegant, lady you're likely to ever meet. Her name is Marian Y. Starnes. Along with Terra Nova, she is co-founder of the Brigade of Light and a very gifted lecturer and spiritual counselor.
She was around 80 or 81 years old the night I first met her and she is accompanied by a cohort which you will always want to make certain is your friend. Able, to say the least, to keep an eye on Marian and those around her, to help through some of the wildest country that you could possibly imagine, and she's just simply a delightful soul to be around. Providing you did ever do something that needed correction, look out, she possesses the ability to kick your butt in so many more ways than one.
The property is propably around 400 acres, I don't remember now exactly, but the front part is beautiful rolling meadows and pasture land, horse stables and paddocks, a series of machinery and feed sheds, beautiful fences, at least three large ponds, might as well call one of them a lake, and then a large non-denominational retreat center, complete with meeting area, huge kitchen and dining hall and office facilities on the end.
As we begin walk slightly downgrade along the path, the trees and flowering bushes become more prevelant as we begin to pass small cabins and lodges and finally make our way out a long, nearly flat ridge. To the left, is a huge and very steep looking valley, perhaps canyon would be the better word. Terra Nova is situated in Transylvania County, the land of waterfalls, and the sound coming from the valley affirms one such large waterfall at least lies somewhere below and beneath us. The fog and mist prevent any looking over the edge and the area is posted heavily as a Wildlife and Bird Sanctuary and people are strictly forbidden to enter that area.
As we continue across the flat mountiantop we suddenly round a turn in the path, and veering to the right, we come to the base of yet another mountain beginning to rise right in front of us. Directly at the base is an area of dozens of mixed varities of herbs, flowers and tall grasses, fairy balls, an assortment of stones and crystals, and a large stone chimney, enshrouded in ivy and vines, rising from the ground. In front of all this is a semi circle of very low benches giving the area a feeling of theatre as the 30 or so of us begin to sit on the benches while others wrapped in blankets lie on the ground in the area nearer the chimneys.
Marian began a brief story of an agreement with the faeries when they first purchased the property. If she would leave this wild and wet area of nearly 80 acres or so completely in its natural state, they would begin a time of manifestations and appearances for a peroid in spring and fall. Through the years hundreds of people had gathered in the evenings to meditate and to watch hundreds of appearances, everything from orb dances to various solid forms of a number of kinds of faeries.
There is quite a history of healings, revelations, and changing of lives in the stories of those hundreds that had made that near mile trek through the woods to this point. Little yet did I know just what a night of story and revelation lay ahead for me .........