Tag Archives: ghosts

The Old Gym: Ghostly Post #3

Standard
The Old Gym:  Ghostly Post #3

I taught at the tiniest of schools my first few years teaching.  The graduating class that first year was eight…yes, eight.  The community was situated close to ten miles from three different towns in the middle of the Kiamichi mountains down in the southeast corner of Oklahoma.

I rented a house from the school and lived across the parking lot from where I worked at this point.  Because I was a beginning teacher, I struggled with time management and grading.  I graded everything and this is not necessarily the best strategy.  As  a result, I’d have all night grading sessions at least once a week.

Sometimes I wouldn’t make it home with everything that I needed.  Thus, I’d find myself crossing the parking lot and keying into the school to get one thing or another.  This even occurred late at night.  At other times, I’d go and work in my classroom after I took care of supper tasks and putting my kid (who was in the fourth grade) to bed for the night.  I was close by and didn’t worry too much.  She could call me if I was needed.

On several nights that caught me at the school late at night, I’d pick up on an eery chill in the air.  Being an adventurous sort, I’d grab my ball bat (one should be adventurous with a means to protect oneself) and wander down the hall.  The school was laid out with one hall that held the classrooms.  Down close to the front end of the hall, you would find the office, the teacher’s lounge, and the library.  The library was carved out of a portion of what is known as the old gym.  A wide hall cut off just past the library that would lead to the bathrooms and the rest of the old gym.

This old gym was fine in the daytime.  Often the other teachers and myself would be comforted with the knowledge that our kids could burn off steam in that old gym shooting basketballs and chasing each other down while never leaving the building.  On the wall that cut the court in half and separated the gym from the library, someone painted a buffalo to represent the mascot of the school.

However, at night it took on its own persona.  I often heard people talk about how it seemed as if the eyes of that buffalo painting followed them around the room even in the daytime.  This seemed even more pronounced at night.  However, if that was all I had encountered, I would just shrug it off and move on.

It was after ten one night and I was wrapping up my grading.  As I said, the bathroom was down next to the gym and nature calls at the most inconvenient of times.  Thus, I found myself on the opposite end of the hall.  As I came out of the bathroom, I heard basketballs bouncing and the squeak of tennis shoes.  I am thinking to myself, “How did those kids get into this building?”  It wasn’t unusual for the community to enter the main gym to play basketball.  Small town, open court.

I entered the gym and noticed the lights were on dimly.  A basketball rolled up to my feet and stopped.  I ignored the cold of the air and began to investigate.  All of the entrances into the school were secured and nobody appeared to be hiding.  I left the room thinking about the oddness and started to head back to my room.

As I rounded the corner onto the main hall, I glanced back.  The light was back on.  I ran back a little annoyed to see if I could catch the kids in the gym.   However, nobody could be seen.  As I reached for the light switch, a ball began to roll on its on accord and stopped next to my foot once more.  My eyes widened and I flipped the switch.  I left in a hurry and wrapped up in my classroom in a hurry.  That was enough grading for that night.

[NOTE:  On the other side of that gym existed a much neglected museum of native American artifacts.  It was never open to the public by that point and I never laid eyes on the displays.  I only knew of its existence because of word-of-mouth. ]

[IMAGE CREDIT]

 

As the Curtain Flutters: Ghostly Post # 2

Standard
As the Curtain Flutters:  Ghostly Post # 2

Around age eight or nine, my parents built a house on my dad’s property…20 acres at the end of a gravel drive split off from the family land.  I was excited about moving into a brick house in the woods.  I even picked my room!

Most nights were normal.  Bedtime at eight or nine…everything seemed to be eight or nine back then.  I’d disappear into my imagination until I fell asleep.  However, as the attic fan pulled the curtains out from the window one night, I noticed a figure out between my window and the swing.  I did what any little girl would do.  I called out to daddy.

Daddy got up immediately and took his rifle out to check out the property.  I knew if he was there, I’d be safe.  This was just a given.  He came back in the house and told me that whoever it was, he was gone.

This went on for several weeks.  Every few nights, I’d call out to daddy that I saw the man outside my window.  Dad dutifully would check it out, never wavering or indicating he didn’t believe me.  Still, every time he would investigate the  area around the house and find no one.

I was becoming a bit nervous at this point and would do things such as clothespin my curtains together to keep from seeing the man and to keep him from seeing me.  However, looking back, he never seemed to look my direction.  Nor did he even seem aware of my presence.

One night during his visits, I watched from the crack in the curtain and noticed he stopped and seemed to be feeling around on the ground.  I never noticed this but he may have done this every night.  However, he seemed to be on the path we had worn out between the swing and the house, right in front of the seesaw.

The next morning, I went out to see where he was digging around.  Pressed into the ground was a necklace.  It had a gold pendant with a small, round opal inserted in the center and a couple of pink accent stones.  I pulled it from the ground and took it in to clean it.

I’m not sure the history of this necklace.  I thought it was a pretty princess necklace back.  Later, I liked to wear it with vintage clothes.  I never had it appraised because the accent stones appeared to be inexpensive.  I suspected it had little monetary value.

Except, it must have been important to him.  I never saw this man in the yard after that day.  He seemed to be at peace with the recovery of that necklace.   I do know I held onto it into my adulthood and I believe I passed it onto my daughter later on.

[The image is not of the necklace in story but I’m hoping to replace it with the real image later on.  This image was found here.]

The 6th Deck: Ghostly Post #1

Standard
The 6th Deck:  Ghostly Post #1

Years ago, I joined the Navy and found myself attending basic and apprenticeship training in Orlando, Florida.  We were in a barracks dedicated to female recruits that stood eight stories tall and I was of course on the top “deck” (we called floors decks in the Navy).  There were some quirks about being on the top deck.  The bathroom only seemed to have hot water.  Thus, even the toilets steamed like you were at some fancy spa resort.  The showers could make your skin peal off.  Therefore, we were constantly seeking other places to shower and take care of personal business.

The sixth floor was not too bad.  No one was assigned to that deck and we found ourselves wandering down there to take care of laundry, showers, and just to find a quiet corner.  At night, however, it was a different story.  Nobody wanted to be there at night.  Strange sounds could be heard in these empty spaces:  the scraping of furniture, the clacking of a paddle, the clanging of something beating on a metal surface.  However, as recruits, we were expected to stand watch on this floor.

To be honest, I was nervous the night I was assigned to the sixth deck watch.  Of course, it was the 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. watch.     I was late to watch because my bunkmate helped herself to my alarm and changed the time after I went to bed.  Thus, I arrived late and disheveled.  However, I did have the presence of mind to grab my bible.  Taking the watch, the other person responded in an irritated voice that this was the third person who had left her standing watch too long.  I tried to explain the situation but she waved me off, uninterested in my excuses.  I hoped that she wouldn’t report me.  Then I was alone.

Every so often, the elevator door would open and shut with nobody exiting.  It was always the one on the left.  I thought this was odd but not worth noting in the logs.  Strange noises could be heard and I pulled out my bible and began reading through Psalms.  I like 91 when I’m really scared.  It’s comforting to think that a thousand can fall at my side but evil will not come near me.  So I read through the Psalm and then moved onto another.

The elevator open and the roving watch stepped out as I slid the bible out of sight and stood at attention.  We greeted each other and they walked through the barracks.  When they returned, I asked if anyone was in the room on the left.  They said no and asked why.  I had heard some tapping.  They laughed nervously.  It wasn’t the first time they heard this report.  It was recommended that I didn’t write it into the logs and then they left.

I would like to say this was my last experience with the sixth floor activities.  However, one afternoon I jumped in the left elevator in a hurry from the eighth deck.  The elevator began its normal descent.  Then it drew level with the sixth deck.  At that point, the elevator dropped.  I know I screamed.  We fell from the sixth deck to the second.  Then the elevator settled out and finished its descent as normal.  We stepped off shakily and determined not to take the left elevator again.  I remember we reported the mechanical malfunction.  The duty officer laughed nervously and suggested to avoid that elevator.

That’s when we heard the story.  Six months earlier a particular recruit lived on the sixth deck.  She struggled with her choice to join the Navy and possibly other events.  We did not know for sure except that she was deeply depressed.  The woman decided suicide was her only escape.  She chose to slit her wrist to that end.  Only, afterwards she had second thoughts.  She entered the left elevator to seek help.  Sadly, she bled out by the second floor.  Once the elevator settled on the ground floor, it was too late.

We were nineteen and curious.  Therefore, we decided to explore the barracks in which she died.  Thus, we through our laundry into the washer and began to move from alcove to alcove.  One of the girls with me called out to come see what she found.  As she lowered the desk, she had discovered a ouija board carved into the surface.  It was noted that this particular space seemed much colder than the rest.  We ended up pulling our laundry and moving to another floor to finish it up.  From that point forward, we only entered the sixth floor when assigned to watch.  Nobody wanted this watch.

[NOTE:  I hope you enjoyed this story.  This is truly how I remembered the events as it occurred over twenty years ago.  I hope to share other stories over the next couple of weeks.  Happy October!]