We have a lovely American couple coming to stay soon and we once visited them in New Hampshire where everything was white picket fences and retro diners that served pancakes, bacon and maple syrup.
My sister has always had a penchant for horror movies and spent quite a lot of her late night youth on the sofa with our dog for comfort and protection, scaring herself half to death by watching horror movies.
( She is now teaching my niece the delight of thrilling yourself by being scared. Maybe a good lesson in life.)
These two facts may not seem connected but it my (very limited) experience of horror movies, white picket fences and innocuous looking towns often feature.
I looked at the pretty houses in this town in New Hampshire and wondered who was lying in the cellar with an axe in their head or was waiting for night so they could get up and stalk the locals.
Though I do understand the dramatic necessity, the idea that someone hearing some noise in the cellar, when the storm has cut off the electricity or you are a young woman alone in a house under strange circumstances, then creeping down the cellar steps is just plain idiotic.
Don’t go down. Stay where you are and pile all the furniture you can lay your hands on against the cellar door.
Or, get out and run to the nearest house with lights on and a family car parked outside.
Lock yourself in the toilet.
Anything but go down the cellar steps – are you stupid?!
We have a cellar and to be honest it holds no fears except for the need to stop just piling unused stuff down there and have a good clear out.
However, our dog has never set foot down any one of the cellar steps in all her life and will stand, at the top, waiting for you to come up unscathed, or meet a dreadful fate beyond her control.