Modern Day Haunting
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following is an account of a current haunting in downtown Charlottetown,
PEI. The address and the name have been with-held at the request
of the owners. Editor
"met Mary" one hot August evening less than a year after
we bought our house. It all started when our visitors from Scotland
had arrived after a long trans-atlantic journey and we discovered
that Audray was allergic to our four cats. We decided that, despite
the summer heat baked through black shingles into the top floor
of our older home, it was probably best to make up the guest room
on the third floor. That part of the house is usually kept closed
off and there would be the least amount of "invisible furballs"
to bother Audray.
that it was surprisingly cool up there, I went about the business
of preparing the room on the third floor - Mary's room - for our
friends. Keeping in mind that there is something about a freshly
made bed that attracts our furry "offenders" from all
corners of the house, I was particulary vigilant in making sure
that I closed and latched each door behind me lest some of our
little sneaks were to follow! Although the members of our resident
"cats-against-closed-doors club" are particularly adept
at opening almost most doors, cupboards, bags/boxes, and kitty-treat
containers, I admit to having the upper hand when I choose to
shut them out and truly close the hundred year old, iron latched
doors. Even the "president" of the club can't get in
- despite her desperate howls of protest!
up and down the stairs to the third floor I flew with the bits
and pieces that I needed to set up my international visitors properly.
Anxious to get back to my guests and the cold lemonade, I made
one last trip with overloaded arms. I knew that I would have to
put something down at the top of the stairs as I did not have
a free hand to open the door to "Mary's Room". It was
to my shock (and admittedly terror) that the moment I set foot
on the top stair the door opened for me. It didn't simply open
a "hair's breadth" or even a "bit" as it might
have done IF there had been a breeze and IF I had I let my guard
down and not properly latched it as I left. But I knew there was
no wind, and I had made sure it was latched, and now, before my
very eyes it was opening wide - as wide as it would open. I didn't
even have to pause or rearrange my load in order to enter. So
I tossed the extra blanket over the foot of the bed ,dropped the
shelf almost in the middle of the room, slammed down the lamp,
and plugged it in. I took a moment to gather myself before I headed
back down to the living room and graciously offered my guests
another round of lemonade - or perhaps something a little stronger
this time? It might help us to sleep after all!
I had experienced first hand the torment caused by Colin and Audray's
resident ghost in Scotland, I figured they would be less than
enthusiastic at the prospect of sharing their 3 week holiday in
Canada with another such individual. I was sure it wasn't the
type of "spirited" time they were looking for so I said
nothing and felt a bit of a twinge of guilt as I packed them off
to bed that night.
didn't take long for them to find me out though. The next day
Audray approached me with the news that we share our home with
a ghost. Apparently Mary was doing her utmost to "look after"
my guests by periodically opening the door to check in on them!
Having a ghost of their own, they recognized the behaviour and
luckily were not afraid!
then on, Mary seemed a regular presence in our activities. She
seemed to thrive on the attention she was receiving as every time
the subject came up she would leave a friendly reminder that she
was very real. She particularly loved electronics. The tv, alarm
clocks and especially the stereo were her favorites. These appliances
would turn on or off at strange times - especially when you least
first our Mary appeared to be fairly mischievious. She loved to
turn on CBC radio (at volume level 10) in the middle of the night
during their international programming. And let me tell you there
is no more rude awakening than some guy shouting in a foreign
language or funny accent at the foot of your bed at 4 am. She
also liked to set off the alarm clock beside your head for 2 am
on a Saturday morning.
time Mary became more sensitive to the people she shared her home
with. It was becoming increasingly evident that she loved music
and chose it as her mode of communication. She still loved CBC
radio, but she began to turn it on quietly on weekend mornings
after 6 am. It was also evident that she couldn't help herself
when the music started though - like a bad kid she cranked it
- and it was usually some horrid version of a long forgotten song
that only the CBC Weekend Mornings show could get away with pumping
out onto the airwaves!
seemed to be particularly fond of my husband. She would pace the
hall and stairs as my husband literally overworked himself on
the computer until he got up to come downstairs to accuse me of
playing tricks on him. She also learned what music soothed him.
One night as my husband and I were having a particularly stressful
conversation about finances, my husband's favourite Eric Clapton
instrumental song oozed out of our stereo speakers, lulling us
into knowing everything would work itself out.
hasn't visited us in a while now. Although it is nice to sleep
undisturbed by radios and clocks and things, she was a pleasant
presence to have around. Everyone who has ever come to our home
comments on how it has such a warm and welcoming feeling about
it. Even the cats have never, ever acted strangely and are in
fact always looking for opportunities to get up those stairs to
the third floor and have a nap on the bed in "Mary's room".
I guess they must have warned her that I was hoping that she would
start doing the dishes next...
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