This article is a treasure in itself. Every single thing it refers to makes me want to hear the entire story, not just these interesting snippets!
I can only imagine what the ‘strangely shaped fossil trees’ might have been that were dug out of the quarry, and the ‘petrified-looking’ bodies along with them. A paleontologist would cry at the thought of the loss of this treasure. I wonder what happened to them? Are they in a deep drawer in a museum somewhere just waiting to be identified? Did they get taken home by the workers, only to be thrown out later accused of dust collecting?
Reports of toads or frogs in trees and rocks are not unusual, but still interesting. It would be interesting to know what type of beetle the reportedly enormous one found in the solid block of wood in the ships hold in Portsmouth was.
A stowaway snake being found in a ships load of wood is not strange. Depending on the finders attitude to slithering reptiles ‘terrifying’ might be a better word to describe its discovery.
The bat found inside the tree is very interesting. While bats can be red in color they aren’t usually described as ‘bright scarlet’ and if bright red bats were usual in the neighbourhood I doubt that the finder would have been quite so disturbed at its appearance. I know bats can fit into incredibly small spaces, (we have beautiful little mouse sized ones here and I have seen them fit into the tiniest of cracks) so I wonder if there was an opening that was missed?
The skeletal bird on the nest is a little weird. As they said, it is difficult to imagine how it became imprisoned. It came and went enough times to build a nest and then the door slammed behind it? I can only think that it died unexpectedly on the nest and the tree just grew around the opening.
The flat cat in the tree is the makings of a good kids story. (‘The cat on the mat is flat’ by Andy Griffiths is a favourite around here ) Judging by the bite, I am sure the cat didn’t find it very funny though. It sounds a bit like Old Man Willow, but without Tom Bombadil to come and save the cat before it was squeezed to death!
Aaah, the romance of the lock of hair and the unreadable note. Did the message say ‘keep your manky piece of hair, I am running off with your best friend’?
The child’s skull in the silver teapot is a sad story, if only they could have found out what the facts were. If the teapot was carefully hidden in a fork and the hiding place was then covered over by the growing tree, unless it was an exceptionally sturdy pot, you would think it would have been crushed. The condition of the pot is unspecified, though.
Finally, the hunters skeletal remains being found inside a tree. An amazing bit of preservation and, if their guess as to his end is accurate, a terribly undignified way to go. Sounds like Old Man Willow at it again……