Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Ghost Story ... The Haunted B&B

It wasn't stormy, but it was dark, cold and late, and we were tired from a long day of exploring Ontario just north of Toronto. Normally we would drive the extra hour or two back to Toronto, but when we finally saw a vacancy sign, we decided to spend a night at a charming bed and breakfast at the side of the road.

Fortunately there were lights on inside the quaint old house as we pulled into the parking lot. We paid for our stay and trudged up the carefully maintained stairs to our quiet room. My companion, who is blessed with absolutely no skill in detecting spirits, quickly drifted off to sleep. As soon as my head hit the pillow however, I was immediately treated to a Technicolor slideshow of images from the old house throughout it's colorful history. I sensed a strong spirit, who immediately noticed that I was aware of her. She was delighted that I could communicate with her, and immediately started nattering away in a charming accent how happy she was to find someone to chat with!

Needless to say I didn't get much sleep that night as she regaled me with tales about the old house. She was delighted with the current owners, "That nice man and his lovely family!" but she had been unhappy for many long years before, when a series of thugs and bootleggers had used the place to run drugs and alcohol during prohibition times. I had a mental picture of her in a Victorian-era dress and hat (purple if I recall correctly), sipping tea in a sunny parlor that I was told I'd have breakfast in the next day. I tried a number of times to convince the old woman to go into the light, but she was adamant that she was happy where she was, and wanted to stay and help the current owner. I finally drifted off to sleep just before a knock on the door let me know it was time for breakfast.

Bleary-eyed, I dragged myself down the stairs. My traveling companion, usually entirely immune to psychic interference, actually asked if I'd been speaking to someone that night. "Not out loud," I replied. She lifted an eyebrow (which for this Taurus, used to hearing about my psychic adventures, spoke volumes). I explained what had happened as the proprietor brought in breakfast.

"Is this place haunted?" I asked him. He smiled.

"If it wasn't, I'd have to make up a story," he said amicably. "That's good for business."

I began to tell the story of the Victorian lady, and shared her history of the house, which he confirmed. I told her she stayed to protect the house, and that she was fond of him and his family because he was such a nice man, and they took such good care of the place. When I described her, he pointed over my shoulder to a picture behind me on the wall. "That's her," he said.

I looked back, and there was the old woman in her Victorian dress and hat who had kept me awake all night with tales of the bed and breakfast where I had gotten no sleep.

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