Originally posted: 18/07/2011 as part of The Fleece Files
Firstly, a missing post from June, circa 19 (that was the date I was told this but it had happened a few days earlier).
Two of the staff had walked up to the back of the building, before opening hours, to find a pane of glass smashed in one of the shrubs below the back windows, and on the decking. Nothing too weird about that, except nobody can find where it came from – there are none missing from the building. So we’re looking at one of two explanations here: somebody climbed an eight foot wall or gate to deliberately smash a pane of glass on our terrace for no reason over night, or it appeared from nowhere/dropped out of the sky. Third explanations welcome as neither of them appeal to me.
There are times when, as a paranormal investigator, you can have such a thing as a crisis of faith. I know its not just me from talking to other people, and it does worry me. The people I know who have been doing investigations for years tend to remain strong in their belief of ghosts/spirits/etc (usually mediums/psychics), or as time goes on they believe less and less (parapsychs etc). Falling in with the latter category as a paranormal historian, it depresses me. I’ve known a few investigations in recent years where that gut feeling that something could happen, and how much I want it to happen, has been lacking, and it takes the fun out of it.
An investigation a few months back at the Old Lodge, Malton on behalf of Spiritual Universe events was the first time in a long while I felt that buzz again. Working in the Golden Fleece has been a bit hit and miss: I don’t get that buzz even when I’m wandering about the building alone, but I am sufficiently intrigued by the strange happenings to have started this blog.
Which brings us to July 8.
I’m stood in the back bar, looking up the corridor towards the front of the building, about 10am. The only other people in the building at this point is the acting manager, who is ‘somewhere’ in the building (i.e. I know he’s on site but not where), some workmen in one of the top rooms, and four guests (two couples).
I see him come out of the door to The Meadery (the function room, as you leave the back bar heading to the front its the first door on the right), and head up to the front bar quite swiftly. I turn back to what I am doing, hear a noise, and turn round to see him behind the back bar. There’s no way he could have moved fast enough to have been in both places at the times I saw him, so I go for the logical conclusion: a member of the public has wandered in, and must be apprehended. I did first ask where he had been, and he said the back cellar, as I reach my conclusion I say “then who just walked up that corridor?”
The staircase to The Meadery is off limits to the public unless the room is open for an event, so there shouldn’t have been guests up there. The workmen are at the front of the building (guest bedroom staircase, not The Meadery staircase) and all in hi-vis vests over the work clothes, so I’ve run out of options.
I run up the corridor, followed by the acting manager, and nobody is going to be surprised when I say “and there was nobody there…” Of course not. This is about ghosts, so here we have one.
Now lets look logically at this. From where I was, they could only gone up the front staircase as they weren’t in the front bar, the front door was locked, and they weren’t in the toilets. I knew what all the guests looked like, and it wasn’t one of them. I know what all of the workmen looked like, and hi-vis vests apart, it wasn’t one of them. Thinking back, nor was it the acting manager: they both had mid-blue jeans on, and a dark blue t-shirt with white piping, but the style wasn’t identical. Also, the figure I saw was that little bit shorter, little bit smaller frame, and had short hair (as opposed to an almost shaved head). So who – or what – did I see?
Crisis of faith averted? Possibly so. What worries me now is the amount of times figures in modern clothing are being seen in the Golden Fleece, especially ones resembling current members of staff. As mentioned in my first blog, the staff corridors are a bit of a rabbit warren, and chef Anna has frequently heard her name called, even glimpsing through a door who called her, but never quite catching up with them. On one occasion, she even phoned the member of staff she could hear calling her on the ground floor, to find that said member of staff was in the top guest room making up the bed. Who – or maybe that should be what – are we seeing?
My new seance nights start on Tuesday, July 19 – join us if you want to know more about this, skeptics welcome!
Remember: keep your equipment dry, and your coffee strong
Ghost Finder General