Sometimes we get so immersed in day-to-day responsibilities, we forget how much fun it is just to hang loose and explore. Last week, I had such fun with Cathie Smith and Jason Jobes, two friends who are also recent members of our SRT crew. I'm not going to say how much older we ladies are than Jason, but there's a gap. However, we share a love of the paranormal, and we had such a wonderful day. Jason never once hinted that he was bored with our company, and we all got to know each other better, in amongst having a ball. Fair warning, this is one of my longer blogs, even though there isn't room to relate every single incident we had fun doing that day.
Cathie Smith and Me
We've all been to many of the shops in Mineola; however, I hadn't done much exploring around the countryside. Jason grew up in Mineola, and Cathie is a Century Twenty-One agent, so they knew places I'd never thought of. Turned out, they also knew areas each other didn't know about. Since this is a paranormal blog, I'll tell you a few of the "mysteries," as Jason calls them, that we searched out.
One of the sites we visited was Jason's church. I won't reveal the name of it, since … well, I just won't. He related several occurrences that he'd had there, as well as things that had happened to friends. It a lovely country church, and one of the buildings was an original structure that had been moved to the new site from elsewhere.
When we got out of the car, I was immediately drawn … not to the old restored building but to the newer church. On the front porch, I saw a full-bodied woman apparition.
I gasped, and said, "Did y'all see her?" But when I checked to see where Jason and Cathie were, they were just turning around from looking in another direction.
I pointed at the church. "Se was right there, in front of the church, walking across the porch and down the steps. She wore a long, beige skirt. She was dressed as though for church, and I'd say the clothing she wore was from the 1980's. She was slender and perhaps in her forties."
"Did you get a name?" Jason asked.
I thought for a moment, because sometimes even if an apparition has disappeared, I can get more information if I "tune in." I said, "Pauline. I think her name was Pauline, but I'm not getting a last name."
Jason contemplated, also, but couldn't come up with anyone by that name or who resembled the person I described. I walked over to the church with my KII, and it did activate on the porch.
Another interesting place we went was where there are rumors that an old resort once operated on Rock Falls Lake. Of course, the rumors also abound about things that happened there, although no one, as far as we know, has ever been able to confirm any of the mysteries. Old stone pillars rose on each side of a gate that blocked the beginning of a long driveway down to the lake. There appeared to have once been lights on top of the pillars, and perhaps some sort of security camera at one time. Unfortunately, the gate was locked. We did find a hole someone had cut in the fence there, but it was too small for us to get through, darn it. Of course, there were also No Trespassing signs a lot of places we went that day, including around here. We had fun, though, talking about climbing the gate.
We especially wished we could get in there when Luther appeared. I sensed him behind the right-hand pillar, and started chatting with him mentally. Then, just to verify to myself that he was there, I stuck my hand through the fence. The air where Luther stood was noticeably colder.
"Hey, y'all," I said. "There's someone here to talk to us. Come here and put your hand through this hole. Feel right behind the pillar."
Both of them did as I asked, and their eyes widened. Both Cathie and Jason admitted they could feel the colder air. And when I got my infrared thermometer out of the car, it did show a drop in temperature there. Not a huge one, but a drop.
"Who is he?" Cathie asked, and I mentally started communicating with Luther, telling them what I sensed, and relating what we "talked" about. "He's a short, stocky man, not fat, but muscular, and he's wearing bib overalls. His last name is Rutherford, or Rugby, or something similar sounding. I believe he lived at the resort on the lake in the 1940's."
Just being able to "chat" with Luther really fired our desires to get inside those gates, but we weren't quite ready to be arrested that day.
Then Luther told me, Someone's coming.
Since Cathie had indicated earlier that the area was patrolled, when I relayed what our ghost said to my friends, we decided we better hightail it. And we did pass a red SUV coming our way as we left. There was no way for us to determine if it was someone who would have made us sorry they found us there. The roads were public property, of course, but we did sort of wander off them now and then.
We also found two lonely graves at the end of a trail we walked down into the woods. The man's grave was well marked with a nice stone. The other grave only had a rough stone on it. If there had ever been anything written on it, it had eroded over time. I didn't sense anything from whoever had once lived there. We thought perhaps it was an old homestead, and as we were walking back down trail through a sudden rain shower, Cathie pointed out some plants that definitely were not original to the woods. Someone had planted day lilies at one time, and as we looked closer, we could see other signs that this had once been a home to someone.
It was so interesting to have Cathie explain to us the signs she looked for to determine the history of a site, things like day lilies or rose bushes or other sides the place had one been inhabited.
Jason had told us there was a place that lore called Cry Baby Bridge in the area.
"Oh, a friend keeps telling me about that," Cathie said excitedly. "Do you know where it is?"
"I sure do," Jason said.
On the way there, though, Jason had us stop at a railroad crossing so he could tell us the story of another mystery.
"I was here with a couple friends one day," he said. "We set up a camera right here by the crossing, and my friend's wife and I walked over there." He pointed down the tracks a few dozen feet. "What was interesting was when we played back the camera tape. We, of course didn't see it at the time, but a young girl walked right towards where she and I stood. She was dressed in a cropped top and shorts, and she walked right past us!"
"I'd love to see that," I said.
"Unfortunately," he told me, "I'm having trouble tracking down a copy of that DVD. But I'm working on it, and you can definitely see it when I find it."
Cathie was clearly thinking about something, and she said, "There was a story once. A young woman came outside to get in her car and go home from her job in Mineola. The car wouldn't start, and she called home to ask someone to come check it out or give her a ride home. Then, a few minutes later, she called back and said, 'Never mind. I have someone here who will help me.' She hung up before they could ask her who was with her, and that's the last they heard from her. Later, they found her body, where someone had killed her by slitting her throat."
"Oh, no," Jason and I both said.
"She had been married to an abusive man," Cathie went on. "They arrested him and he finally admitted killing her. He had disabled her car, and when he 'fixed' it, he asked her for a ride somewhere. Then he killed her."
"I wonder if it could be her haunting this place?" Jason asked.
"Just in case, let's open a door and show her that she can still cross over," I said. We did, and I felt the young girl go into the light.
Then we headed on to find Cry Baby Bridge, which we had to make that our last stop, since it was getting late in the day.
The bridge was on a paved road, one of those bridges that only have guardrails on the sides.
There most definitely was a ghost lingering here. I could sense her as soon as we go tout of the car.
"There's a woman here," I told my friends. "She lost two of her children in a wreck here. The didn't die in the wreck. Instead, they drowned in the high water when they were swept away."
"That's exactly what the rumors are about this place," Jason said excitedly. "Do you get anything else?"
"Her husband was killed, too, but he crossed into the light," I said, "as did the kids. The mother's still here, and we need to talk her into crossing over, so she will be with her children. She's wandering around here looking for them."
We did just that. At first, the woman was hesitant, but when I got her to look upward where there was a golden doorway and golden stairs leading to it, she started running up the stairs. As usual, though, even though she was in such a hurry to reach the people waiting for her at the top of the stairwell, she called back to me, Thank you!
And as usual, I got a huge happy smile on my face and had to wipe a way a tear. A wonderful ending to a wonderful day.
I'm really winging along on Silent Prey. I'm enjoying the way the story is turning out. I have company coming for a week starting next week, but I'm going to sneak in as much writing as I can before that, and of course, hit the grind again the following week. Those of you who have read Winter Prey will remember Keoman, my handsome Native American guy. This is his story, but he's got a lot to overcome before this is over. Channing is a doctor who has fled to the Northwood to try to escape her sad memories in Texas, so we'll see how it goes between the two of them. The female monster, Nenegean, is similar to the Spanish La Llorona, the weeping woman. She has a gloomy tale, also, but there's no excuse for what she does. As Nodinens tells us, we should never try to put human emotions into a creature who has long lost any hint of human-ness.
I finally got a Kobo link for Living With Dead Folks, Volume Three. The sales are going well, so thank y'all for that!
See you in a couple weeks.