Boo!

Do you believe in ghosts? Have any of your dead relatives ever contacted you? Have you ever seen one, or experienced something preternatural? It happened to me…

Right after my divorce, I was living in a garden apartment my high school friend Virginia had moved out of. I lived downstairs from a very Italian family and across the street from Spring Creek (otherwise known as landfill, or knowing that neighborhood, where they hide the “bodies”) where we saw pheasant, rabbits, cranes and other cool country wildlife.

The girls shared the only bedroom, and I slept on a pull out couch- more often than not throwing the mattress on the floor and sleeping on that. The floor in the bedroom was carpeted, but the flooring in the living/dining/kitchen area was a black linoleum. It was a really cute apartment, except for the nights that the landing pattern for JFK airport was right over the house. One time we counted 15 planes stretched out miles away waiting to come in to land. People in Howard Beach speak in five minute intervals due to the deafening roar of the planes.

One night a noise woke me up. It sounded as if something was being dragged across the kitchen floor. I got out of bed and turned on the light, but didn’t see anything on the floor except the green garbage bag by the table waiting to be thrown out. Tired, I shut out the light and got back into bed. A few minutes later, I heard the noise again. I jumped out of bed, threw on the light and…nothing but the green garbage bag by the front door waiting to be thrown out.

Wait a minute.

That bag had just moved three feet from the table to the front door. There was only garbage inside of it- garbage night was the next night. I dragged the garbage bag back to the corner where I usually keep it (we didn’t have a garbage bin- the ex got that.) and IT WAS THE SAME SOUND THAT WOKE ME UP IN THE FIRST PLACE!

(Insert spooky music here…)

So that time, my garbage was haunted. Either that or I had monster rats moving it across the floor. Not that I ever saw rat poop or anything.

The second time I saw something unexplainable was in our next apartment which was in my Nana Frances’ house. I was actually born in that apartment since my parents lived there when they were first married. It became available after my cousin moved out and since my Italian landlord’s bathroom caved in into my bathroom directly below and we had to pee holding an umbrella so their creepy teenage son didn’t peer down at us- it was perfect timing.

So again, the girls got the bedroom and I was still sleeping on the mattress in the living room. The layout of this apartment was different. You entered my Nana’s hallway, and opened the door to our apartment and immediately encountered the stairs. After a really tight turn in the stairs, you ended up in a little hallway with a bathroom on the left, bedroom in front and the entrance to the living room/dining room on the right. Kitchen was in the back, but this time doesn’t figure into my ghost story.

One night, I was in bed which was not REALLY bed. I could say I was in MATTRESS, but that doesn’t sound good at all. So I was in “bed” watching TV when I heard one of the girls stirring. I looked at the doorway to see if they were getting up and sure enough one of them, I thought it was Beena, passed the opening on the way to the bathroom. I turned my attention back to the TV because it wasn’t really a big deal- they got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night often. After a while, though, I got concerned because I didn’t hear a flush and I didn’t hear her go back past the living room to bed. I got up and went in to check on them. They were both sound asleep in their bunk bed, covers thrown off. While I was covering them back up, I noticed that they were wearing their feety pajamas. You know, the fuzzy one-piece pj’s with the rubber soles that made their feet STINK when they took them off. A chill ran up my spine and I got covered with goosebumps.

The girl that passed the doorway was wearing a LONG, WHITE NIGHTGOWN.

Maybe Beena changed into feety pajamas because she was cold? I don’t think so. She was sound asleep and didn’t even stir when I put the blankets back on. I just naturally thought it was Beena because of the long blond hair but when I thought about it, that other little girl’s hair was much longer than Beena’s. And later on when I thought about it, neither of the girls had a long white nightgown. All their nightgowns had characters- Barney, Baby Bop, Disney Princesses- on them.

I asked Nana the next day if she ever had a tenant with a little girl, but the only little girl that ever lived in that apartment was me.

(Insert more spooky music here…)

So why this post today? Well, I was walking to the train station this morning listening to “Sir Psycho Sexy” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers (what a dirty song! lol!) with my bag over my shoulder when I felt someone grab my bag. The motion pulled my shoulder back and made me take a step back. What the heck? I was ready to start swinging and looked around- no one was there. I got the chills and the hair on the back of my neck stood up. A block or so later, it happened again! It felt like someone grabbed my bag and pulled me to a stop. My immediate thought is “someone is trying to stop me (from going to work?) maybe it’s my mother, or brother reaching out from the grave.” I keep walking. My knees are watery. Nothing happens for a few blocks then BAM, it happens again. But this time when I turn around, my back comes with me and my pants pull tight. Seems my bag was catching on the button on the back pocket of my new jeans and my ass motion was pulling it back, yanking my whole body to a stop.

I can’t believe I just admitted that my ass was playing a trick on me.

And am I that desperate for my dead relatives to make contact with me that I imagine them sending me signals through my pocketbook?

I’m pathetic.

But at least I was able to explain this “phenomenon.” I have no explanation for the other two “supernatural” events. Hallucinations? Stress? Who knows. Not exactly fodder for a Stephen King book though.

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