I won’t be writing this series in any particular format or order. The stories will be told as I remember them, otherwise they’ll only fade away again. I know, I should write them down. The first story is another reason why I don’t ring the police about things I’ve seen.
The Neighbour who wasn’t there. We lived next to a block of four flats, or apartments for my US readers. Nothing flash about them at all, the block ran lengthways to the back fence, with flat one at the front near the carports. The back doors faced our property and after a year of putting up with a huge variety of tenants I planted a quick-growing hedge. Don’t get me wrong, there were some very friendly people. The front flat stood empty for a while after a thieving, drug dealer vacated the premises. One afternoon someone knocked at our front door, I went out and a young woman stood there. She told me that she had moved into the flat next door and wanted to say hello. My wife came out and we stood talking to her. She told us that she moved here to look for her sister, who had gone missing. After some chit-chat she left and walked back around the front of the flat.
Two days later she returned and we talked again while standing on the veranda and she told us she was looking for her sister. Hmm? Yes it was strange. She said she’d been missing for a year and she had been looking everywhere for her. I can be a tad thick and slow on the uptake at times, this woman’s face rang a bell. She left and I went inside and rummaged through our newspapers and there she was, a missing person. I can’t recall her name but she had long, brown curly hair, a lovely face, slender and about 5′ 2″ the exact description of the woman in the flat. So I rang Crime stoppers and told the woman who answered, that the missing woman in question was living next door to us. I was rudely informed that woman I had been talking to fitted the description of a woman who had been dead for over a year. It was the younger sister who had gone missing and that I should not be making crank calls. Putting the phone down I bolted out the door and around to the flat. It was locked, I peered through the window and it stood empty, nothing. After some careful thought I came to the conclusion that the older sister was indeed looking for her sibling, only from the spirit world. I have no idea if the younger sister ever turned up. I refer to this spirit as one with a mission.
The Man on the bicycle. At this stage I still worked at the RAAF base and if I was rostered on at the office I always took the Warwick Road route. On this particular night we were being blessed with a downpour of biblical proportions, something akin to standing under a waterfall. I left home at 9.30pm and drove off into the night. Motoring slowly along Warwick Road I peered out into the dark. My headlights were useless, the only lighting came from the streetlights and flashes of lightning. Approaching the intersection with Lobb Street, a man wheeled his bicycle out in front of me. I didn’t care about a wet the road, I stomped on the brake pedal. It made no difference, I ran straight over him and came to a halt in the gutter. Shaking, I switched off the car, opened my door and ran back to him, nothing, no one, not even a bicycle. Luckily there weren’t any other vehicles around as I grabbed my torch and walked up and down the road searching for the cyclist. Still nothing.
I drove to work and pondered the events and realised I had myself what I now call, an anniversary spirit/ghost. This is where someone appears to the living at the time they die or when the circumstances are similar, for example the storm. I figured by the way he dressed that he passed there in the late fifties, early sixties. He would have been in his mid fifties, wore glasses, a short brimmed, Akubra hat, like many men at that time and a brown, plastic raincoat. He had a Malvern Star bicycle with a carry basket on the handlebars. I jabbered a little when I recounted the story at work, mainly from the shock of initially thinking I’d actually run somebody down.
The visiting Farmer. This happened eight years ago, while we were having our house built. We spent all of our spare time at the property clearing the paddock, slashing grass and doing a few running repairs to the original fencing at the rear of the block. Lorelle and some friends who came to visit were off picking up branches and I decided to tackle the huge amount of dead grass tangled amongst the barbed wire. I had pushed an old fencepost upright, stood back and took off my hat to wipe the sweat off, when I saw a set of horses legs through the wire and grass. Looking up I saw a man sat on his horse a few feet away. The horse, brown and solid muscled was a type known as a Waler, bred in New South Wales and used as mounts for the Light Horse in WW1 stood there, head up looking over the fence. The rider, a stocky, powerfully built man wearing a huge bush hat, khaki shirt, moleskin trousers and well-worn, elastic-sided boots stared at me. What’s wrong with that you ask? He must be a neighbour stopping for a chat, no, sorry. We had a spirit here, his face was quite dark, I couldn’t see his eyes, only a huge moustache. I said, “G’day, how’re you going?” He kept staring then slowly faded away. Lorelle saw him a few weeks after we moved into the house. I was down the front slashing. She looked out of the kitchen window and thought the figure walking up the track towards the house was me. Being the good wife that she is she put the kettle on then wondered where the tractor was. When she looked out the figure had disappeared. The house hasn’t been free of spirits since.
There is a post script to this story. A couple of years later we were attending the local bushfire brigade Christmas party. The property, originally settled in the 1840’s covered a vast amount of land and the same family still live here, although the holding has shrunk considerably. I approached the current property owner, Harry and his wife and told them the story of the man on the horse. After I described him, Harry said, “Oh, that’s my Uncle Harry, he had a dark face and a big moustache. Yeah he’s been dead for years. Used to be in the Light Horse in WW1.” Another one solved, the, visiting familiar places spirit. I’ve felt him a few times in the house, he likes to look over your shoulder when you’re on the computer.
The let’s try to scare the crap out of Laurie, Uncles. I returned to England in 2002 as part of my whirlwind tour of the world on a budget holiday. I stayed with relatives. One Aunt, who shall remain nameless put me up for a few nights and insisted that I have her bed in the main bedroom, while she slept in the spare bedroom. She wouldn’t take no for an answer, so I sunk into the huge, soft bed and snuggled under the doona. Within minutes it started, whispering voices, the doona being tugged, shuffling feet and a thump, drag, thump drag sound of footsteps. I said, “I’m tired go away, we’ll talk in the morning.” Shuffle, thump, drag, whisper. I wasn’t feeling the love here, the sounds came up alongside the bed and two indistinct shapes slowly made their way towards me. So I sat up and in a clear whisper said, “For Christ’s sake, fuck off and let me sleep.” It worked and I had a great sleep. The following morning I spoke with my aunt and it turned out to be her ex-husbands. The second one only had one leg and walked with that thump, drag noise when he came to bed. Now I know why she preferred to sleep in the spare room. They’re what I call, annoying for the sake of it spirits.
The unwanted apology. When I first began readings I would do house calls, have tarot cards and tape recorder will travel. Early in the piece I realised that many people couldn’t distinguish between a Tarot reader and a Medium. I did both so when I turned up at their house at least I had it covered. I’ll call her Kate, she rang and wanted a medium reading. When I turned up and told her what I did she said, “No I want the cards, I don’t want to talk to dead people.” Okay, let’s do it. I sat on the lounge chair, set up the recorder, gave her the cards to shuffle and started. As I’ve mentioned I close my eyes and tune in to the aura. Straight away a shadowy form appeared next to her. Me, “Well, somebody is here, a man and he wants to talk.” Her, “No way, deal the cards.” I laid out the cards in a Celtic Cross and began. Click, the recorder switched off. I switched it back on and continued, click, off it went again. Taking the new tape out I put it aside and opened another new one and put it in. Click, off it went off again. By now I knew her Dad Rob, was here and he made it quite clear to me he wanted to talk to his daughter.
Her, “You tell him to piss off, I told you I don’t want to talk to him.” Me, “Well, it’s not that easy. He’s here and wants to speak to you.” Her, “Just do the bloody cards.” Click. I pulled the batteries out, they were reasonably new. I replaced them and it switched off again and said, “Do you know how difficult it is for someone in spirit to get through and actually communicate?” Her, “I don’t care.” Sitting back I let him tell me what he wanted to say. It seems that he had sexually interfered with Kate when she was about eight years old and left the family shortly afterwards. Dying about ten years prior to the reading. This spirit came across as remorseful and the interesting thing, he told me everything Kate wanted to know in regards to the reading. Finances, things about her car, children, her last boyfriend and why he left. The recorder still wouldn’t play so I came out and told her why her last boyfriend left her. You have to understand that I could only go by what was being given to me by a very anxious dead, Dad. That I had to trust my own personal guidance and tell Kate what I was being shown. I described her four-year old daughter, who at the time of the reading was in day-care and how her ex abused her in the bathtub. This would occur when Kate went to work at night and he looked after her children. She sat and stared at me for a moment and whispered, “I knew it, I bloody knew it and he denied everything. She told me what he did and I didn’t believe her.”
Her Dad came through again and told me how sorry he was and that he couldn’t move on without her at least acknowledging him in some way. I told her, she shrugged her shoulders and said, “What the hell, I guess I can think about it.” I switched the recorder on and it worked beautifully. She seemed happy with the reading, to a point, It brought up more questions for her in relation to her abuse and her daughter’s. In many ways I saw it as positive, a spirit managed to voice his sorrow and apologies, therefore giving himself permission to move on. Kate had a lesson in forgiveness and learned a valuable lesson about listening to her children. I learned that forgiveness can free us from people and us from them.
Next week: Group Bookings.