Friday, October 30, 2009

spooky stories

I just finished reading Dracula for the first time recently. Thought Halloween would be the perfect time, if any, to read it. And it was.
So I thought that, in the spirit of Halloween and all things spooky, creepy and unexplainable, I'd share a spooky story of my own.

It's a true story. Here I am, apparently very happy about some free bread someone gave us, as a missionary for my church in a small town in Southern Germany, sometime in the summer of 1996: I won't go into too much detail about what life as a missionary was like right now, but for the purposes of the story, I must explain that we work and live in companionships, together 24 hrs a day, every single day of the week.

In this particular city, I lived alone with my companion in a high rise apartment building, like the one you see here (taken from our window). We lived on something like the 15th floor.

It was basically a one room apartment. It had a small entry with the bathroom and a closet, then one big room where we had our 2 beds, 2 desks, another closet, a shelving unit that we used as our pantry, and an ironing board. Then there was a corner of the room, no bigger than a closet, which was our "kitchen" comprising of a smallish fridge, a sink, stovetop, and a small clothes washing machine. That was it. Our entire living quarters.
So, our days were typically spent out and about teaching people or trying to find people to teach. And we'd come home for lunch and then go out again, working until dinnertime, out again, and back by 10:30 for bed. A fairly simple schedule.
But one day, we came home at lunchtime and I walked into our "kitchen" and . . . . . found . . . . . .
Dummm . . . de . . . dum . . . dum.
A bowl and a bottle of vitamins upright and sitting in the middle of the floor.
Somewhat surprised, I asked my companion, "did you put these things on the floor?!?"
And she said something like "what?!? no!!"
And then we both stood and stared at it for awhile (and I took a picture).
Because, you see, these items were previously on top of the fridge. We had a dish drying rack up there where the bowl was and then somewhere next to that was this bottle of vitamins.
But how (?) did they fall and land upright perfectly centered in the tile squares?!? And if they did fall, how did it not knock anything else over either?!?
So, suffice it to say, it. freaked. me. out.
We put the things back up where they were, and tried for some time to reenact this scene, trying to see how likely it might be for them to fall to the floor and land this way. But. We could not, no matter how many times, get them both to land upright like that. The vitamin bottle was much more likely to bounce and roll. And the bowl just couldn't fall that far from the fridge.
And remember, we are on the 15th floor, so someone coming in our window or some such thing was very nearly impossible. We lived alone and no one else we had contact with knew where we lived. Our door was locked and bolted when we left and returned and it showed no evidence of any entrance.
And I had been within sight of my companion from the time we left until the time we returned and I found this.
We did call the mission president and our other local mission leaders to let them know that this was really freaking us out, and to make sure none of them had traveled from other cities and somehow gotten into our apt. without our knowing (obviously very unlikely). They did everything they could to reassure us and make sure we felt safe again (including coming over to our apartment and checking things out for us) and that was that.
We never did figure out what had happened. Perhaps it really was just some strange coincidence that they fell like that. Perhaps my companion really was a much better liar and prankster than I would ever think her. Or perhaps. It was an unsolved mystery. An unseen force. Something . . . . dark and sinister. Something spooky. Ooooohhhh.
Or maybe not.
But at any rate, I was much relieved to be transferred to a new city and not have to worry about it any more.
What about you? Any true spooky stories you'd like to share?
(and as a side note: I am feeling much better, although still not completely recovered. Elisabeth is still running a fever. Samuel is coughing terribly. Isaac is coughing, but not as bad as Samuel. And Abigail is feeling a lot better - the only one who never ran a fever. Yet. So we are at the stage where the little ones are still feeling bad enough to be grumpy, whiny, clingy and demanding all day long, but feeling well enough to torture and antagonize each other. A lovely combination. Happy Halloween. I haven't decided yet who will be going trick-or-treating yet, but we will dress them all up and take pictures at any rate. So, adios until then.)


Anonymous said...

i rented a room in an old house in fredericksburg. in my room was the door to the attic, which my landlady told me was haunted. yes, we'd hear creaks and "footsteps" and whatnot alot. but one particular night, i was in bed reading and i heard a scratching at the door. yes, scratching. it startled me, of couse, and i started freaking just a bit, not wanting to move. but then i noticed the doorknob was turning. (not kidding). so i ran out of the room and wouldn't go back until the next day when i had a friend go upstairs. he "talked" to the ghost/spirits or whatever. nothing happened again while i was there, but i moved out as soon as possible.

so yeah, there ya go. my ghost story.


Kristen said...

yikes magpie!!! Now that is freaky.
Glad you didn't stay to find out what was trying to come pay you a visit. :)

Linda said...

That is so funny! Everyone on my mission in England had a ghost story. They all think their houses are haunted! The scariest thing that happened on my mission was finding a pigs head in our toliet, which we found out later the Elders had put there after a meeting.

Jennifer said...

I don't personally have anything, but Kenneth does. He lived in a 400+ year old house in England while growing up. One day while in the house with a friend they both saw an old lady lying down on his parents bed and when they looked again she was gone. Needless to say, they were totally freaked out and got the heck out of Dodge.

zac said...

When I was younger my father and I were driving from Indiana home to New Jersey through the night. As you may know the Pennsylvania turnpike is heavily wooded and as we were driving along I saw a cloud or fog stretched across the dark, wooded highway. As we approached the fog I saw what looked like people crossing the road in front of us. I remember them looking civil war like. Soon we passed right through it and I thought, "that can't be - I'm seeing things" and then my dad exclaimed, "Did you see that? Did you see that?"

Davis and Carter's Mommy said...

I don't have any particulars, but I can say that a hospital is a spooky place to be in October in the middle of the night, especially after reading Dracula! I hope everyone gets feeling better and much less whiny quickly.

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