Unsettled

I have something creepy to tell you and I hate it.

This past weekend, my next-door neighbor was here. She and her boyfriend are temporarily living with the guy next door, you remember, the guy who paints? Anyway, for now they’re living with him. They help him out with his light and water bills, and he gives them a place to stay.

The woman, who we will call Carol Ann, for reasons that will be obvious soon enough, is smart and I rather like her. She was in school getting her PhD when her life took a turn. Anyway she’s fun to talk to, and she enjoys gardening, so she just comes by and weeds my flower bed whenever she sees it getting unruly. I don’t mind extending kindness to hear even though the rest of the neighbors tell me not to. You’ve never seen such a gossipy place in your whole life.

This weekend, she and her boyfriend had an argument. When Chris and Lilly were on their way here to deliver my trees, I stood on my porch waiting for them and could hear Carol Ann and her man yelling at each other inside their house. After C&L left, I noted Carol Ann was sitting on her front porch looking despondent.

“Hey, Carol-Ann,” I said. “You want some cookies?”

She nodded her head like a child. It just about broke a person’s heart.

So I brought out the rest of the Milanos I’d gotten for when The Other Copy Editor came by and I’m just waitin’ for COVID, is what I’m doing. Waitin’ for COVID. Anyway I got out the cookies, and also one fortune cookie I had left over from Chinese food and why this behind end?

I guess the fact that I even had a fortune inside my cookie means I will survive the COVID when it inevitably hits. All my hobbing and nobbing as of late. Sure, it’s been all hobbing and nobbing outside, but look what happened in the Rose Garden.

Anyway, we talked for quite awhile, Carol Ann and I did, and by the way her fortune said, “Better days are ahead” and I saw her slip that into her phone case for safekeeping. We talked about everything and somehow we got to talking about our houses. All the houses in this little neighborhood were built in 1922, except our row, which was the very last row. Ours were built in ultra-modern 1932. They are still precisely like all the other houses, down to the last detail. In 10 years, it didn’t dawn on them to update anything for the mill workers, which just goes to show you.

I know who first owned my house. I mean, not personally. He doesn’t come over for Milanos and a bonus fortune cookie. But I know he worked in the mills, of course, and was a slasher, which is one of the hardest jobs out there. I’m sure he’d have loads of sympathy when I have to copy edit for 10 hours in a row.

Then I also know that the person who sold me this house had lived here since the early 1960s. My guess is no one else owned it other than them. I mean, I’m basing that on how long people lived in their houses back then, especially mill workers whom I doubt were rolling in it.

“I haven’t had any weird haunted things,” I told her. WHY DID I BRING IT UP? “I wondered if I would, this house being 88 years old and all.”

“Oh, I have,” she said. “Tommy told me four people have died in that house that he knows of.”

Tommy is the owner of the house, the one who paints. He has lived there his entire life. His grandmother lived and died there, for example. “I feel a presence when I’m sleeping, and that’s the room she died in,” said Carol Ann.

Carol Ann. If that’s not an “I was born in 1972” name.

“She feels like a nice presence,” said Carol Ann. “But then sometimes I feel others that aren’t.”

“Really?” I asked, intrigued, and WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?

“Yeah,” she said. “Like, once, you had all your blinds pulled, and my boyfriend and I were in the kitchen. We could see our house reflected in your windows, and my boyfriend said, “Oh my god, look in the bedroom.”

Their bedroom light was on and, again, the reflection was in my window. There was … movement in the bedroom.

“It was like four people were walking back and forth, fast,” she said. “No one else was there. But something was in my room.”

Ack.

Last night, I was going from room to room, pulling blinds. One thing I like about this house is that there are so many windows, but the pulling of the blinds is a 745-minute routine. Anyway, I was in my room and when I grabbed the blind, I noticed Carol Ann’s light was on in her room.

And I saw movement.

It was, like, this fast-moving back and forth. It wasn’t like how a person would move normally. It was too fast for that.

I pulled the blind, determinedly.

Then, to make myself feel better, I looked again. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? “You just THOUGHT you saw fast movement because of what she’d said last weekend,” I told myself.

So your very intelligent pal June looked again, saw EXACTLY THE SAME THING

AND

A

LAUGH.

It was a friendly laugh. Maybe it was my neighbor, though to tell you the truth she’s not Miss Mirth. She’s rather intense and focused. But maybe it was she.

Maybe she…got a Segway! Yeah. She’s over there on a Segway. In her room!

I’m sweaty now.

Let’s look at a photo of anything to get our minds off this.

Oh, look! Cats cats cats cats!!! Cats! Don’t think about black cemetery cat!

I feel clammy.

Did I mention?

Creeped,
June

85 thoughts on “Unsettled

  1. What’s further down, like on the end, of the spectrum from “unsettled”? Because I think that’s where I am with this story. And never looking out of our windows again.

    Lovely post, pretty June. Hoping neither the Covid nor the ghosts get you. Scratches to the furry residents from our house.

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  2. My house is built on a former driving range. We are the original owners. We hear the wails of hundreds of frustrated golfers. Not really but we found golf balls all over the yard for years.

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  3. Cemetery Car so pretty though. 🖤🌚
    My mother died in the house I grew up in. Home hospice care.

    I do not really feel her there though. I see her spirit in the art and crafts she’s made…but not her. She got the hell out of there as fast as she could. She hated the city we lived in. Lots of conservatives, military, evangelicals. She loved the Rocky Mountains where my parents first loved when they moved from Connecticut. But my dad’s job with military contracts brought them there.

    Anyway..
    Just saying because this post made me finally realise this now.

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  4. It’s late in the day your time but now I’m creeped out for the rest of the day my time. Thank God you have that killer watchdog Edsel to protect you.

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  5. Yikes. Even though I would have been peeing myself at that point, I would have lifted the blind again, too.
    I think I’ve told the story several times about my house fmr. that my grandparents owned for 50+ years before my ex and I bought it. I am convinced that I occasionally sensed my Gpa in the front bedroom, which is over the living room where he died. I was never afraid though, and felt that he was there protecting us. He was a good, loving Gpa – in life and death.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I just made the connection that this is the house where the neighbors got together and paid to have his water put back on. The one whose employed girlfriend left and was staying in the shed or something like that. Boy that house has some stories. And probably a spooky history too.
    Lovely post, pretty June. And lovely of you to have your neighbor over for cookies.

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  7. I haven’t ever had a spooky experience like those described here, but I DEFINITELY think houses have vibes. When I was a child we lived in a house from about 1978-1982. That house had some serious bad vibes. I never felt safe there for even one day. It had a lot of windows, and I was convinced a man was looking in at me. Oddly, I never told my parents I didn’t feel safe there- I guess it never occurred to me to say it. As a married people Mr. Texas and I have lived in two houses on the exact same lot. We bought from the original owners and this house (both of them) had/have GREAT vibes. Even still I asked our daughter several times while she was growing up if she felt safe at home. She did! I owe it all to old Mrs. Umbach. She and I are the only ladies who ruled these kitchens. I think about her often.

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    1. I was always scared in the house I grew up in, but it was a newly built house when I was eight. Maybe the location had bad vibes. I am a nervous person though and even as an adult I am scared of the dark and sleep with a light on. Also, all closet doors must be completely closed and my feet must be covered and must not hang off the bed. I swear I was traumatized by the horror movies my dad and sister loved to watch even when I was really young. I would be a wreck if I saw ghosts next door.
      Our current house typically doesn’t make me nervous, but my kids seem to have inherited my fear and nervousness. In the last year, my youngest child has become scared to be in a room alone. If no one else is home, she will even track me down in the bathroom. She also is afraid if her brother falls asleep before her and she’s the only one awake in her room. Thankfully, he is willing to sleep in her room with her. Now I’m worried that maybe there are bad vibes making her scared! Our house is just over forty years old and I’ve lived there for about 14 years. I have no idea who lived there before me. Maybe I need to ask my neighbor for some history on our house.
      I know nothing about saging a home but maybe I need to learn.

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  8. The living cause me enough agita. I don’t want any extra from the dead. When my mother died years ago, I told her “DO NOT come to see me as a ghost. I can’t deal with that!” So far so good.

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  9. I haven’t read the comments yet but I legit grabbed my heart when I read four people died that she knew of. I got that awful dread feeling. Yikes! I too would be terrified!

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  10. I haven’t read all of your comments yet, but I want to tell you what I did and it worked. Our house is very old – over a hundred years old. I don’t know if anyone ever died in it, but I do know that there were times that I would feel that something other than my family was inhabiting the second floor. One day I got so angry that I marched up the stairs and yelled ‘OUT, get OUT of my house,’ among other statements until I was exhausted from yelling. That was about 15 years ago and I can tell you that I have been haint free since then.

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  11. At least it isn’t in your house! Your haint blue porch ceiling is protecting you. Can you video next time you pull the blinds? Or is that too invasive? I was thinking you could watch the video in slow motion. But I guess that would be weird.

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    1. You guys, this scared the SHIT out of me. I don’t want to ever see it again or god forbid record it to entertain people. Like, I’m literally never gonna look over there ever again at night. It was creepy AF.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t blame you. I don’t believe in ghosties (officially) but have had two unexplained experiences of seeing something and hearing stuff…. sooo I got past that by ignoring it. If “something” leaves me alone, I am happy to leave it alone.

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      2. Yeah, maybe brick over your windows on that side of your house – is that too drastic? It doesn’t seem drastic. Just…I can’t help feeling that if whatever it is KNOWS you saw it, well…it might decide to come on over to your place.

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  12. Oooh I love ghost stories, as long as they don’t involve me.
    I like the smudging and porch ceiling paint suggestions for your neighbours.
    Mary Lou

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    1. Before everyone agrees that I should just go ahead and splurge on paint with all my riches, I did give them my sage, as I have said somewhere on here, and also remember they don’t have a fridge. Or one of their windows. Half the time they don’t have water. “Hi, I’m here to paint your porch haint blue” is not really something that would go over, I don’t think.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. The earth being as old as it is, I hardly think there is anywhere we could step where something hasn’t died in that spot at one time or another. I am so totally on the “there is a rational explanation for this ” side. Then again, I didnt see what you saw.

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  14. Hi. Carol Ann here. Reporting for duty. Born in 1956. Name is just about ready to fall off the Social Security top 1,000 name register, like #985 or so.

    Also, I find creepy stories interesting, not scary for the most part. I personally have had only one such semi-experience, while on the bus going home from work. Perhaps I’m not that approachable from the other side.

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  15. I’ve always heard that if a random cat shows up at or near your house, it’s there to protect you. Maybe old black magic kitteh showed up to keep everything safe. No need to worry.

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  16. That is why you painted your porch ceiling haint blue , right. Check their porch ceiling for the color and splurge on a can of haint blue for them.

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  17. So much fun since it is not yours. Some of your five animals would be reactive if you were haunted, I’m sure. I was scared when we moved in to the old white elephant house from the eighteen hundreds. The previous owner was afraid of the upstairs and slept on a cot in the kitchen. He was also around ninety years old and the stairs were surely a problem. I was told he was mean to people who had lived with him who had then died. In the three years we lived there we never heard or saw one spooky thing. Lucky us!

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  18. My first thought was that there has to be a logical explanation. Then I remembered it is October and that seems to be when we have Mr. Field make his appearances in our house. Mr. Field was the husband of the lady we bought the house from and we are pretty sure he died in the house. He is not bad, over the years he has messed with the cats sometimes and occasionally jostle some of the Halloween decorations.

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  19. Oh that is super creepy!! I am such a chicken and I would be so nervous! I would want to look all the time to make sure nothing was there, but would also be terrified I would see something. I wonder if something can be done. I know it isn’t your house, but I wonder if Carol Ann or someone can burn some sage or something. I don’t know lots of ghost banishing techniques (again – scaredy cat here) but I’d want to do something to make that situation go away…unless making them leave could cause them to relocate – which case, close the blinds. Eeeeek.

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  20. Didn’t Miss Doxie’s dogs, fmr., used to stand and stare into a corner of her previous house, and she eventually found out from a neighbor that a previous owner had set a fire there or killed himself there – something like that? Am I completely mixing up a dream and her life?

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  21. I am leaving a comment without signing in! I do it all the time, maybe y’all have spirits in your computers! Creepy story but great story! In the last two homes we’ve lived in I’ve seen spirits; first house the gentleman died and he was looking for his wife, our current house I don’t know what it was but I’m in New England now, lots of spirits here, heard doors shutting when they weren’t open, saw flashes through the house, I saged both and never saw them again. I was very kind as I walked around and saged, telling them they could stay if they were quiet, but told the first one his wife had moved, this current one, I dunno if it, or they, are still here but if so they are quiet, no more door slamming or flashes.

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      1. When my husband and I bought our first house the month before our wedding, from the moment we moved in, there was such a dark, malevolent air about it. We started fighting almost from Day One. Ugly, vicious fights. It got to the point that I seriously considered calling off the wedding. We lived there for 5 years, completely remodeled the entire house but that ugly, dark feeling never went away. How our marriage survived that house, I don’t know. We’d also see things and I would often hear a muffled conversation in our bedroom that didn’t have a source. Couldn’t hear it anywhere else. God, I hated that house! I’m not religious at all but I probably should have had it smudged or blessed or something.

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      2. I think that makes me more afraid than all the rest of it. Because that seems like they are getting in his head somehow.

        I hope the sage helps, because those two don’t need any more fighting.

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  22. Could it be the shadow of the branches of the big tree between your two houses? The wind blowing and moving them a lot? The moon casting the light causing the shadow?

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  23. We had neighbors who had a benevolent deceased man who hung around in their house. He had scared the previous owners out. One of their children, out of the blue with no other musical talent in the family began to demand piano lessons and a piano. She was incessant. Later, when remodeling they found a box in the attic full of piano scores and sheet music. The owner 3 people back had been a professional pianist and when they began to contact people who had known the pianist they learned that he had been childless and had bemoaned the fact he had no one to pass his talent and skills down to. The family decided to befriend him and tell him they would honor his talent and he slipped away.
    The daughter loved her lessons and piano and played into her adult years.

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  24. Me too!! Some of the best ghost stories I have ever heard from June’s blog. ‘Come for the laughs, stay for the paranormal stories….’

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  25. Aye yi yi!!!
    I know I would have run screaming from the room, if that had been me!!
    But . . . in my rational moments, I try to tell myself that – in the history of the WHOLE WORLD – people have died everywhere, so chances are, no matter where we go, someone has died there. It helps keep me from being COMPLETELY freaked out.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I LOVE stuff like this.

    Yesterday my good friend who just moved to California called me. She and her boyfriend live in a super old building in old Hollywood, and the first Annabel (Annabelle? Too lazy to Google) movie was filmed in their basement. If you’re not into the genre, it’s about a scary ass Raggedy Ann doll that is supposedly partly based on a true story. She called me and asked me to stay on the phone with her while she pulled their laundry from the dryer in the basement. She said the basement creeps her out and no one in the building will go down there after dark. As were were talking, she said “something” kept pulling the clothes from her hands as she tried to remove them from the dryer and put them in her hamper. Then one of the empty dryers started on its own. She’s also heard whispering and the lights flicker often, doors opening and shutting, etc.

    I LOVE hearing about these things but I wouldn’t want them to happen to me!

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  27. If they’re laughing, I wouldn’t worry about it. Some spirits enjoy staying on, and only get perturbed when they think someone is going to expel them. We have “the girl” in our house – I see her pretty frequently, and she doesn’t bother so much as startle me. I stopped telling the rest of my household when I see her, it freaks them out. But then again, I also hear some people’s dead relatives when I am with the person.

    I love the pulling of the blinds routine, there’s something comfortingly old-fashioned about it.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. I wish I could share the camera video my son captured in his house. Middle of the night. You can see the hallway where the bedrooms are on the camera. Spare bedroom is the first door. Door opens. Light turns on. Several seconds pass. Light turns off. Door slams shut. He was sound asleep in his room and didn’t hear a thing until he got the “motion sensed” alarm on his phone. Which honestly – I would rather not know that information in the middle of the night. He went and checked – which again, honestly, I would simply cower in my bed under the covers waiting to be murdered until daylight – but no one there.

    CREEEEEEEPY.

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    1. It’s a poem written for me. At our Christmas party for “the creatives” at work (I hate that), they had a poet there with a typewriter. You talked to him for a bit and he wrote a poem for you.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. I love a good ghost story – meaning, I love stories of benevolent spirits. Is there any chance that they have a ceiling fan and the shadows made by the rotating fan blades were the rapid motion seen? If there isn’t a ceiling fan, then yeah, that house is haunted AF.

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  30. Oh, how creepy!

    One of your cats looks like a cardboard cutout in that picture with the glow behind.

    The morning after my grandma died my oldest son woke up and came in my room. He was about 5 or 6 years old. Before I could tell him that Grandma White (his great grandma but we always called her 1st and last name so not to be confused with plain grandma) had gone to heaven he sat on the edge of my bed and said: Mommy, Grandma White was in my room last night. She came to see me.

    That was more touching than spooky, but I do believe she came to say good-bye.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Ignore my comment about having to sign in. I just brazenly ignored the “Fill in your details below” and hit “Post Comment” and it worked.

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    1. Yes. I’ve said this many times and even made it my blog slogan line for a few months, but I can’t seem to make the message stick. Maybe I should make coffee mugs that say it. Temporary tattoos. Oooo, I like that idea! I’ll get on that.

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      1. WordPress is either haunted or has an occasional glitch or it decides to toy with certain people certain days. More than 9 times out of 10 there is no problem. Other times, yes I have filled in all the details, yes I have rebooted, and it still will not let me click like no matter what. Other times it will not let me post a comment even though I feed it everything it asks for. Then I might come back a couple of hours later and it is all cooperative again. Rarely, but that’s the truuph.

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