Monday, October 05, 2020

A Knock at the Door

We were up in the mountains for a couple of days, staying in a cabin with some family members, including our 12-year old granddaughter.  I was sound asleep in the downstairs bedroom when a loud knock sounded at the door. I sat straight up in bed and nudged the gardener awake. As I remember we were both so tired we went back to sleep as we heard nothing else. (And of course, he thought I was just imagining it.)

The second night I was getting ready for bed when a loud knock sounded again. Knowing our son was still up out in the living room I rushed to fling open the door and ask him what he wanted. He looked up, confused, and said, "What?" No one knocked at your door.

Still wondering the thought came to me that maybe our granddaughter walked in her sleep. I went up to her room and she was still awake so I climbed into her bed and we talked for awhile. I asked her if she had ever sleep walked. "No, but my other grandma also asked me that. In fact you are the third person to ask me." So I began to tell her the story of Heidi, which she has not read (but should) and the mystery of the open door in the city house where Heidi was living with Clara.

That's all it took to take me back to my childhood and one of my two favorite all-time stories: Heidi.

Back at home I looked in our bookshelves for the beloved copy I had read, but found one much, much better, which I had forgotten we had. My great-aunt's 1900 edition. Beautifully bound, with wonderful etchings, I think they would be called.

Of course I read it, enjoying the wonderful story again, this time with the amazing illustrations, and thinking that my great-aunt had read the same copy--and maybe even my mother and her sisters.

Of course the book came up in discussions with my sister and friends. I remembered reading Heidi Grows Up and Heidi's Children. One friend checked her bookshelves and sure enough she had the two other books, purchased years ago in a London charity shop and loaned them to me. She and her mom began reading Heidi together. 
Then my sister found my mom's childhood copy and began to read the story.

And then my DIL went searching for her childhood copy to read. And my great-aunt's copy went into the hands of my granddaughter, who does not sleep walk, but who I hope will read it.

I've done a little survey of the young girls I know, and quite a few do not know 
about this classic story, which is sad for their sake, in my opinion.

I am now finishing Heidi's Children.
A fun saga midst our Covid-19 days ...

                                            ...  all because of a knock on the door.


  1. Love how a knock on the door led to so many books being opened, Dotsie. I'm going to look at my bookshelf downstairs and may do the same.

  2. My Grandmother that lived next door to us read me from the book Heidi one summer when I was a girl. She also read poetry sometimes. I'll never forget that and I know I have a love of reading because of her. I love your old copy of Heidi and I don't think I've ever seen those other 2 neat! Love sharing memories! Hugs!

  3. Hi Dotsie,

    I'm so glad to see a post from you -- I have missed you!!! Heidi was one of my very favorite childhood books; I still have my copy with beautiful colored illustrations. The descriptions of her grandfather's home in the Swiss Alps just captured my heart. To this day, I still want to visit the Swiss Alps, all because of "Heidi." So glad you shared this with us.

    Did you ever solve the mystery of the knock on the door? I hope you're doing well and hope you have a great week!

    Love and hugs,


  4. I loved Heidi as a child, though it wasn't a popular book here in UK. But I'm sure that my fascination with mountains and snowy countries stemmed from that.

  5. I think I was in 4th grade when I read Heidi. Mom insisted on it. I’ve never regretted it. Per haps I’ll read it again. Thanks for the memories!! Have a wonderful week!

  6. Hmmm, a mystery! I haven't read Heidi in years! I also read the sequel books. I'm sad to think I didn't read these to my children! We read so many great books for school, but missed Heidi.

  7. I think my sister ended up with the Heidi book that we had in the house. Your mentioning Heidi reminds me of the movie "Heidi" with Shirley Temple. We loved Shirley Temple movies and even had Shirley Temple dolls. "Grandfather, Grandfather!" Nice memories! Thanks for reminding me!


  8. Perhaps it is worth a mysterious knock on the door to reawaken your love of these wonderful stories. Odd how that worked out. I may have to go find my copies now that you mention it.

    That's a great photo of your granddaughter taking such an atmospheric photo.

  9. Oh,m how truly interesting!

    My mom gave me Heidi when I was little, I'd do anything to know what happened to it. I think I lent it out. (tears.) I still have my beloved Anne of Green Gables she gave me though. She was big on great books as presents. Both my parents most of my sibs and I are big time readers. Two of my siblings don't read, and I could never understand why. Love your old pics of these classic stories. I never read the other Heidi stories. Now I must! Thanks!!!

  10. Your woodsy getaway and the mysterious knock led to some great memories. I loved Heidi as a child and would welcome delving into her story once more.

  11. Loved this post and this story! I do hope that your granddaughter reads Heidi . . . it is such a wonderful story! It is my favorite childhood book and I, too, read Heid's Children and Heid Grows Up.

    Now I'm wondering if all of my grands have read it . . .

  12. Can you believe I've never read Heidi! I do have a copy of it on my bookshelf, though, so now I have no excuse. I've read several of the other books you've recommended and loved them all. I was not much of a reader as a child so have not read even Little Women or Anne of Green Gables, but I did read Rebecca of Sunnybrooke Farm a few years ago and HIGHLY recommend it.

  13. I always loved the Heidi story and bought the book for my daughter years ago. I never knew there were follow up books and will have to look for them. Did you ever find out who knocked on your door? That was so mysterious!

  14. I grew up loving Heidi's story... and how wonderful that this situation brought Heidi back into focus in your life! I need to dust mine off the shelf and read it again too! Did you ever find out where the loud knock came from? Many blessings to you :)

  15. Hello old blogging buddy, I am closing out my blog with one final catch up post! Blessings to you and yours!

  16. Where, Dear One, have you been? Hope that you are well.


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