David brings us the tale of a phantom Nurse!
I have a close relative, as you may recall, who once owned a private school in the West Country... In the Autumn of 2002, business took my wife and I down to Exeter: naturally we enquired whether, it being Half Term, we might stay at the school. The answer being in the affirmative, we duly arrived at the monolithic Napoleonic pile at around tea-time. You should know: it is a long climb up four flights of steep stairs to the top of the house: this is where our bedroom was located!
While my wife renewed acquaintances
with the family, I undertook the arduous climb with the bags..... At the
top of the stairs is a corridor: there are bedrooms to the front and left:
ours was on the left. Entering, I placed the luggage on the floor and
turned to leave, in time to see a Nurse cross from the top of the stairs
into the facing bedroom: she turned her entirely agreeable face to me
and smiled! I of course smiled back at the unexpected neighbour!
Returning downstairs, I
enquired of our host who the other guest on the top floor might be. Barry
(for that is his name!) evinced surprise and perplexity! I described my
encounter: Barry's normally ruddy complexion grew somewhat pale......
After a second or two's reflection, our host informed me that the school
had been a hospital during the First World War, and that I had described
with total accuracy the uniforms worn by the nursing staff: this he could
vouch for, since he had a photograph taken at the time.
A haunted workplace
Several years ago the
company that I work for needed to expand, and thus when the opportunity
arose, the Factory next door was bought up and purchased by my former
managing director. At the time of the purchase I worked on the shop
Now I had often complained
to my boss about lack of workspace, so when the opportunity arose for
more room, my department was more than keen to prove that we could move
departments and keep up our work schedule. This did mean working
late: however, we were used to working long hours.
I also underwent the un-nerving experience of hearing my Christian name being called out aloud! I was totally alone at the time!
My general manager at the time dismissed this as over-tiredness and, that evening, worked late with us to dismiss any rumours. At 9 am he took us up the road to get a take-away for dinner, having personally insured that every door was shut prior to us leaving. When we got back, one of the fire doors was gaping open: this was the fire door that I had closed!!!
Eventually, some five
years ago, the rush period finished...
A Soldier's Tale!
My father is the most level headed man you could ever meet. You can't confuse or cheat him (believe me, I tried enough times as a boy!).
But he tells me he saw a ghost and I believe him. He was in the army (King's Liverpool, of course) during the emergencies surrounding the creation of the Israeli state in 1947/8. Part of his duties was to guard "terrorists" (I don't know if they were Palestinian or Israeli) in a barbed wire camp, overseen with United Nations administration.
night, not yet dark, the guard corporal told my Dad he was due to man
the guard tower in a couple of minutes, so Dad went out and shouted to
the guard to come down (two men could not cross on the steps up, so the
present guard came down first).
Dad went into the Guardhouse and emerged a couple of minutes later. Seeing a soldier already in the guard tower, he thought the present guard must have gone back up, so took the chance to answer the call of nature. After finishing, the guard corporal saw my Dad, asking (in a forthright military manner) why he wasn't already on duty. Dad said that the present guard had gone back up, the corporal disagreed, mentioning he was in the guardhouse with a mug of tea. Dad said someone was in the guard tower. Both he and the corporal walked toward the tower, where in the now failing light, they could clearly see a British soldier with a rifle and bayonet. Both looked at each other puzzled. The corporal shouted at the soldier, eliciting no response, then ran up the steps with my dad following. Upon reaching the guard tower floor area, you've guessed it: nobody.
Both men discussed the incident, then dad pointed out that General Orders had several weeks previously forbade sentries to fix bayonets on duty as a sentry had been fiddling with a searchlight and had turned round, touching a live connection with his bayonet and been killed instantly. Was this ghostly soldier the same man on duty for one last guard roster? I don't know, neither does my dad and presumably, the army doesn't either, as no satisfactory explanation was ever forthcoming