I used to love the river when I was little. I spent my summers at my grandparents’ house in the country, and my granny would take me every day down to the riverbank. She’d let me play near the water, while she dozed under the trees, or she’d sit with me on the bank and tell me stories about the nymphs; magical creatures, fairies that lived in the water, and charmed passers-by with their beauty and song.
I remember listening to her like I was entranced, like one of those very nymphs were sitting beside me, enchanting me with her song. I would go to bed at night, dreaming of the strange and magical creatures that frolicked in the water and hid behind the trees. I would visit the river on my own, hoping to catch a glimpse of the magic. Half-excited, half-deathly afraid, I used to look behind the bushes and splash in the quiet waters. One time, I even fell in and had to walk the entire way home soaked and shivering.
I’ve gone back a few times since then. I’ve sat on the river bank with girlfriends, or I’ve gone back alone, to gather my thoughts, or to purge them out of my mind. The house in the country has long since been sold off, and no one I know is left at the small town nearby. I live far away now, and it’s hard to visit, although I try to make it as often as I can; which isn’t very often, to be honest.
I never saw any nymphs either.