A Ghost In The House
By Lewis Gerew Ray8em@aol.com
Story from Philadelphia Ghost Hunters Alliance
While living in the Historic Tacony section of N.E. Philadelphia, ghosts have made their presence known to my wife and I for many years now. In fact, I would consider the number of times we have actually experienced ghostly activity to be abnormally high. One entity in particular made several appearances and left us with a lasting impression.
It all began at suppertime one evening. My girlfriend (now wife), Sharon, came to my house to see me. She mentioned an incident from earlier that day concerning my mother. Apparently, Sharon was coming home from a corner store. She looked up toward my bedroom which is clearly visible being that the house is also on a corner. She noticed that the curtain in the window was pulled to the side as if someone were looking out. Keeping her eyes fixed on the window, she then saw someone wave. The time was shortly after noon, so my father and I were at work downtown. Assuming it was my mother who waved, she kindly returned the greeting and the curtain closed.
Instead of going directly home, Sharon thought a visit to see my mother was in order. She remembered on numerous occasions my mother saying "Stop in sometime, just because Lew isn't home doesn't mean you can't say hello". She knocked at the back door, the most frequented entrance to the house. Since no one answered, she knocked again using a bit more force and incorporated the doorbell. Again, there was no answer. Without success, Sharon went home thinking that either my mother didn't hear or was ignoring her.
It was at the dinner table that evening that Sharon asked mom why she didn't answer the door when she knocked. My mother at that time admitted that she had been at crafts from 11:00a.m. until after 3:00p.m. that day and she had no idea what she was talking about. The question was raised as to who could have waved from the window. My father and I were at work and my mother at crafts. With no one else living in the house but the three of us, it was agreed that Sharon's eyes were playing tricks on her. Although Sharon wasn't as convinced as we were, the conversation ended with nothing more to say or think about. Without realizing it at the time, this was the first encounter with the ghost we became so familiar with.
The next ghostly experience was a few months later. Sharon and I had just left her house to go to my house. It was a gloomy afternoon but, since it wasn't raining and our homes were only a few short blocks from each other, we walked. Nothing out of the ordinary happened to us that day. At least not until we were approaching the rear of my house. Because the house is on the corner, you have an unobstructed view of the back door. As I looked up at the door, I noticed the curtain in the window of the door was pulled to one side. A few seconds later I saw a wave from the open area of the curtain. Instinctively, I waved back and simultaneously so did Sharon. The curtain was then let go of and it returned to its normal resting position.
Less than a minute later, Sharon and I reached the back door. Upon turning the handle to enter, I unexpectedly found that the door was locked. A little annoyed, I fumbled for my keys and opened the door. I had full intention of saying something to my mother for leaving us locked out. As we entered I called aloud "mom", but there was no answer. Thinking she had already made her way upstairs I called again louder, "mom!". I told Sharon to stay by the door. My mother should have heard me that time. With my patience expended, I walked to the bottom of the stairs and yelled "MOM!". There was no response and I became worried something was wrong. I ran up the steps two at a time, a vigorous look around turned up nothing. I went to the first floor to see that the house was secure. All the doors and windows were locked and intact. The basement was last to check. The lights were out telling me that if someone were down there, they weren't from this family. I grabbed a baseball bat, cautiously proceeded down the thirteen hardwood steps and turned on the lights. There was no one in the house but the two of us.
In awe at the whole ordeal, it was agreed that we both saw someone wave to us from the curtain which was pulled aside. A bit shaken from the event we decided to leave without haste. As we hit the landing in the backyard, my mother and father pull up into a parking space in their old beat-up "K" car. We told them what had just happened and asked if they were the culprit. Admitting that they were at the casino all day and it wasn't them, we then suspected we had a ghost.
You know yourself that when you experience something of this sort you have to tell a friend. Knowing ourselves that an outside opinion would be in order, that is exactly what we did. It was then that we established a description of what we saw. This entity seen by both of us appeared to be a female, short in stature and a little obese. We assumed that that was why we kept mistaking it for my mother. She fits this description to a "T". Additionally, flesh tones were seen by Sharon as well as myself giving the ghost substance. We did fathom the idea that maybe we saw her this way because we expected her to be my mother. But we agreed that our perception of the ghosts height was derived from the actual direction from which the waving gesture came. Also, you could see the form of a person in the window which also assisted us in evaluating size.
As some undetermined amount of weeks passed, I finally had another encounter. It was very early in the morning. I remember it well because my son was about three weeks old. Ritually, for the first month of his life, he would wake for a feeding between 4:00-4:30a.m.. This particular night he cried for food at 4:20a.m.. Since it was my turn to warm up some formula, I jumped out of bed and went downstairs
It was quite strange for me to be as alert as I was that night. A possible reason was yet to come. As I reached the bottom of the steps, I turned toward the dining room. Understand, it is a clear view from one end of the house to the other. As I turned I saw a figure in the dining room peering out the window. The window shade was only half drawn leaving a sizable space to look out from. Hunched forward was this figure looking out in the direction of the car. I stopped in my tracks. For a brief moment, I thought it was my mother. Because of recent vandalism to my parents car, it was not unusual to find mother having another restless night. She would occasionally stroll downstairs to ensure all was okay. Additionally, this person had the same body habitus as my mother with the same flesh tones. The streetlight was entering the window so there was no doubt that someone was there. A glimmer of movement was also seen as if weight were being shifted from one foot to the other. Frozen in place, I called to her. The first call was a little soft as to not wake anyone else in the house, especially my father. With no response, I tried louder the second time realizing that my mother has been having a problem with her hearing. Without a word, the figure stood erect acknowledging that it knew I was there. More frightening was the fact that although the light was still entering the window, the figure took on a menacing black appearance. The color was such a deep black that it almost seemed like a void in the silhouette of a person. At this point I was getting alarmed. The only comfort I found was in the fact that between us was the corner of our rather large dining room table and about 25 feet of distance.
Suddenly, it moved closer. It walked around the corner of the table, bypassing the only obstacle between us and minimizing the distance. My adrenaline surged. With my heart pounding its way out of my chest and my arteries pulsing with fire, convinced we had an intruder, I prepared for battle. Slowly, and never straying from facing my opponent, I walked to a light switch a few feet away. In anticipation as to what was before me, I clicked on the switch --- there was no one there anymore. I made my son his bottle, told my wife what happened and went to bed.
In want of identifying our visitor, we often pondered who it might have been. Later, we realized that prior to the visitations, my grandmother had died in Germany. Without an obvious difference in age, my mother exacts my grandmother in all aspects. Needless to say, this was the last time anyone has ever seen her.
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