Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Ghost story

I've lived for over ten years in the same apartment. It's one unit in a four unit building, and a lot of other people have come and gone during my time here. A few years ago, an older fellow lived next door to me. I believe he was a Vietnam vet, and he was a bit of a hermit. He worked up at the American Legion, but, other than that, he didn't leave his apartment often, and never had visitors. Whenever I saw him, I always said hi and tried to talk to him, but he was a quiet, introverted fellow. Days would go by without him leaving his apartment or getting his mail, and I said to several people, including my landlady, that it worried me that he might pass away over there, and no one would know.
That's exactly what happened. A few days before Christmas, one of my other neighbors knocked on the door and told me that they'd found the fellow's body in the apartment. He'd died of a massive heart attack either three or four days before he was found, and had been in the apartment all that time. Honestly, I found it more deeply sad than creepy, that this poor man died alone next door, and it took that long for someone to miss him.
Within the past six months, I've had some strange experiences in my own apartment. Now, I'm a born skeptic, not one to freak out easily. However, some of these incidents are impossible to explain. Franklin, my cat, on certain nights between 11:30 and midnight, will wake up from a dead sleep and pace through the apartment, sniffing the air, almost distraught over something he senses or smells. I have a really good nose, and I have never smelled anything. The first time he did it, I actually believed that the building might be on fire because he was so agitated. This happens on a fairly regular basis, always at the same time of evening. I could dismiss this because, well, cats are weird and they do strange things.
Often, I catch glimpses of something dark out of the corner of my eye. When I turn, there's nothing there. Again, this is highly dismissable, and no kind of proof.
One night, though, there was some kind of bright yellowy light in my hallway. No lights coming in from the windows could reflect there. The light hung in the air for a moment, and then moved up the hall. The cats also saw the light. When I went down the hall, I saw nothing to explain it.
There's been a recent development that I can in no way explain. I have a heavy insulated drape hanging at my back patio door in the living room. On three occasions in the past couple of months, this curtain has moved or riffled as though someone were walking between the curtain and the door. It's been a cold winter, so the door and no windows were open. I was sitting right next to the door, both cats were accounted for, and there was no one else in the apartment. I can't rationalize this away. Can anyone else?
And I've had the feeling that someone is here many many times. It's hard to describe, just the sensation of someone being in the room with me.
Now, although the curtain thing startles me when it happens, and it can be a little unsettling to see someone or something regularly out of the corner of your eye that's not actually there, I'm not afraid of whatever may be here. It's not a menacing sensation at all, not scary, just strange.
What do you guys think? Do you believe in ghosts? Because I'm really starting to think that my apartment is haunted.


  1. so all this has been happening after your neighbor died? i'm glad you are not spooked, i wouldnt be able to sleep at night...

  2. Yep, this all happened after he passed away, and it seems to have gotten more active after the most recent people moved in to the apartment where he died. What do you think? Maybe I'm just freaking myself out, but I'm really not the type to do that.

  3. I live with 2 ghosts and a ghost cat myself. Don't get freaked and you'll be fine. I found that ignoring it causes the disturbances
    to decrease over time. I also find that my spiritual housemates are easier to live with then my physical ones!

  4. I've got a house ghost named George and my cat Moosie vists from time to time. We told Moosie he could hang out with George when we let him go. We said the same thing to our Zelda, who we had to put down on Monday. She hasn't come back yet, but she might.

    As for George, he's pretty harmless and benign. He's more of a prankster than anything, but he can be helpful when you ask him for help. Just make darned sure you thank him for it!

  5. Although I've never experienced one myself I do think "spirits" or "ghosts" exist and I think that, most of the time, they are just lost souls who deserve our sympathy more than our fear. If I were you I would probably start talking to it but I think sassypackrat is probably right. If you ignore it, it will probably settle down or even go away.

  6. Wow, I don't know if I would be so calm. It sounds like the spirit is trying to find a place to stay, now that people have moved into his apartment. Like sassypackrat said maybe you just have to give him time and the disturbances will go away over time.

  7. Say hi to him, and tell him thanks for coming back to say hi to you. See what happens. Maybe it's his way of reaching out in death when he couldn't in life, and just wants you to know he appreciated your kindness.

  8. i haven't seen one but i might like to!

  9. That's really sad :( A guy down the hall from me at my old (single) place passed away unnoticed too. He kept to himself, drank a lot, I barely ever saw him. He smelled really bad and there were a lot of complaint s about the bad smells emanating from his unit. Well, he ended up having some sort of hemorrhage and died instantly, but his body was there for over a week! We all smelled something awful, but assumed it was just him. Very sad, very disturbing for me. I saw the coroner come and after that a hazmat team. I couldn't sleep for a week.

    About this ghost stuff, I just don't know. If your windows are single pane, like ours used to be, there could be a very slight draft coming in and disturbing the drape. Gracie freaks out all of the time--and half the time she's intently staring or even stalking absolutely nothing. I think Franklin's just being a cat. The yellow stuff, I don't know.

    Okay, I've written a novella. Keep us posted Miss MAB.

  10. Gosh, I don't know if I would be that calm. I don't know what to tell you. I like what Additionstyle and Threadrare said. I would work on those lines...(if it were me)

    Best of luck and please keep us updated!

  11. Yikes! This kind of thing gives me the creeps, but it seems that whatever is happening is friendly. I know that cats can sense things we can't, and I have to wonder when one of mine is fixated on something I can't see. I'd try to adopt a relaxed attitude, and just think of it as my new roomie.

  12. I, of course, do believe in this sort of thing, whether they be spirits, restless ghosts or just an energy that manifests itself at times. Why he would be in your appartment, I am unsure. Unless, of course, it was because you were someone that showed him kindness before he passed on. I would be spooked too but if, he is, in know way, troubling, aside from irking the ire of the kitties a bit, I would ignore him but, at times suggest he move on. Otherwise, he may take up your offers and settle in. That is how I was saddled with my husband's frien for almost 4 months sleeping on my office floor...move on...move on...: )