Monday, December 29, 2014

Poltergeists and other creatures of the night

Do you believe in ghosts? I've always said I do and I don't, but I sort of alarmed two of my grandchildren Saturday on the drive from Tomball when I said I thought there were ghosts in my house. Are they scary, they asked. No. They're friendly ghosts or as I like to call them, using an old country term, "haints." My very first novel had a scene about haints and a dark cemetery, and I guess that's stayed with me. But in at least two houses I've lived in I've felt the presence of other spirits, and sometimes, just for a fleeting moment, I think I see a figure lurking around a corner or peeking through a doorway. I never feel threatened, and often at night I wake with the sense that someone's in the house watching over me. Sometimes it's my mom, gone almost thirty years now.
When I lived in the big house I refer to as my doctor's wife house, two good friends told me they saw people. Winston, the shirt-tail uncle who helped raise my children, once sat in the dining room, looked across the large entryway into the sunken living room, and asked, "Judy, who are all those men in  your living room?" Alarmed, I asked if they were threatening, and he said no, they were friendly. Then a friend who stayed in our upstairs guest bedroom for a while reported that figures walked in and out of her room at night but all were friendly. So, don't count me as a disbeliever. Jacob keeps wanting me to show him a haint, but it isn't as easy as that. They don't stand still for a viewing.
A week ago yesterday, my hot water heater just flat quit. Nada. Not a drop of hot water, once I'd used what was in the tank. The plumber came first thing the next morning and declared he could find nothing wrong. Just to be sure, he blew it out, cleaned it, and said "Call me if it goes out again." It hasn't, so far.
Yesterday my furnace quit, and I woke to a cold house, as I wrote last night. First thing this morning, the furnace guys were here. When I got up this morning, it was 61 in the house; by the time they got here, about 9:30, it was 72. Go figure, because they couldn't. They spent well over an hour (with dollar signs going round in my head) checking out everything they could possibly check out. No problems at all, so they left saying, "Call us if it does it again."
Coincidence? I don't think so. I think there's a poltergeist in the house. A poltergeist (noisy ghost in German) is a ghost responsible for loud noises (okay, I did hear some things go bump in the night last night) and for moving objects around. I think of poltergeists as mischievous, sort of like the Christmas Elf (do you think he hung around?).
I think a poltergeist is responsible for my water heater and furnace troubles. I just hope he doesn't get into a battle with my friendly haints.
What? Me read a paranormal novel? No thanks. I'm not interested. But I suspect in reality the paranormal is all around us.

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