Have you ever walked into an old house or building and felt the place had a magical energy about it? It's like an atmosphere or eerie feeling you get the moment you enter the door. Old houses have a history filled with old stories from years and sometimes generations gone by; if their walls could talk, what tales they would tell us...
Old houses have secrets:
First thing we discovered, after burning some toast, the kitchen window had been painted shut. We decided to check all the windows only to discover every window in the house was either painted or swollen shut. The pipes in the basement would make an awful groaning sound whenever the hot water was turned on. The house was very poorly insulated, very cold and drafty; we spent an obscene amount of money on oil, just to keep our pipes from freezing and our wee ones warm and toasty in the cold winter months.
One night while we were sitting in the living room with some guests, when someone yelled "wasp!". There was a wasp crawling around on the window ledge. Then someone else said "another one!", and gestured to an electrical outlet. We watched one wasp after another crawl out from the electrical outlet, then we saw a few more crawling around on the window ledge. Nothing a little squirt of raid couldn't take care of but still pretty strange to see wasps crawling out of electrical outlets in the winter. The following morning, hubby checked the basement and attic for wasps nests but found nothing. We alerted the landlords and they came over to inspect the areas of the house that might have nests but found nothing either. They had the attic and basement sprayed for insects, just in case they missed something. It didn't stop the wasps. From time to time we would see wasps crawling around the floor or crawling through electrical outlets. Friends and family would joke with us calling the house the "Amityville House".
Christmas time we had a gathering of family one evening. We were all sitting around chatting and laughing, having a good time when we heard a hysterical yelling coming from upstairs. We ran up to find my brother's girlfriend had been trapped in the bathroom, quite frightened and sobbing. The door handle had somehow jammed and wouldn't turn and trapped her inside the bathroom. We had to remove the old hardware to get her out. Another time my daughter had a friend over and they both got locked into her bedroom closet. The kids started sleeping with a night light on and I would often find them in the morning all gathered into one bedroom. They would occasionally get frightened while playing alone upstairs, exclaiming it was too spooky being in their bedrooms alone and eventually the stopped playing up there.
There were many other things, from creaks to groans of the old house settling; noises that all older houses make, but still no less creepy. Then things started going missing only to be found in the most obvious place days/weeks later; we would make light of it saying it was the Minute Man taking our things. Whenever we went on the hunt for a lost item, we found a lot of things that weren't our. Things tucked away into little nooks and crannies all over the house: One time my oldest daughter found a mans wedding band tucked away in the far corner of her bedroom cubbyhole. Another time I found set of old skeleton keys way up on top of a shelf ledge in the dining room. We found old children toys, photos, broaches, books, hand written correspondences... all sorts of interesting trinkets that we collected and tossed into a little basket in the kitchen.
The Attic Experience:
From that day on I felt very uncomfortable being in the house alone. The stillness of the house during the day was quite un-nerving and of course, my ears and eyes were on full radar alert to any out of the ordinary noises or sights. Although there weren't anymore attic or root-cellar doors mysteriously opening, there were still some strange noises and odd feelings we encountered. There were a few occasions that hubby had to be out of town for a few days for work. I would try to spend those nights in the house alone, the kids all cuddled into my bed with me, but all I'd need to hear was bang of a pipe or groan from the old house and I was packed and into the car with the kids and dog heading to my mothers for the night. Hubby and I focused on finding a permanent residence for us in the following months and found something not too far. October was a welcome month, we couldn't wait to be out of the old Dutch-Colonial. Ironically, the very house we wished we could buy 12 months ago, we couldn't wait to get out of. We would drive by the house almost every day and I would find myself thinking back to that attic mystery and all the other goings on we experienced, wondering if there was something extraordinary happening inside that old house or were the things that happened all blown up by our imagination?
The house was going to be occupied by the owner's son after we moved, but it stayed empty for over a year, then there was a "for rent" sign on the lawn. A family moved into the house for about a year then they moved. The house stayed empty for a long time after that until last year we saw a work crew doing renovation in the house. Today there is another "for rent" sign on the lawn. Hope they fixed the attic door...
Do you believe in the supernatural?
Monday Questions #6