I am participating in the 2018 A to Z Blog Challenge. For more information on the yearly challenge, click HERE. It’s day nine, and the letter is…
Years ago I accompanied a friend to a family Thanksgiving gathering in rural Virginia. On the way there, her mother told me, “You’ll like this place. The house is supposedly haunted.” Obviously, my reputation for all things ghoulish preceded me.
Once there, it took about twenty minutes to conclude that the house was, indeed, haunted. Never mind that the place looked as though the couple had just moved in (even though they’d lived there for over five years). Plastic tarps donned practically every door frame, and it was freezing inside. I was told that the house had been in a perpetual state of renovation since they’d moved in.
There was only one working bathroom, and it was on the third floor. Desperation finally took over and, forced to brave a visit, I was treated to the sounds of whispers, voices, and wall-tapping. A speedy return to the downstairs resulted.
In the den, the couples’ three-year-old boy conversed with invisible beings in the corners, and when asked by a guest to whom he was speaking, he pointed as though we should all clearly see his friend.
Basically, it was one of the freakiest places I have ever been.
But it wasn’t until the owner gave us a tour of the grounds that the hairs on my arms literally stood on end. She was a painter and her studio was an old shed that had once been a small school house. She proudly showed us her paintings–vague outlines of white figures silhouetted against black backgrounds (or the reverse). The mother of my friend held up one canvas and asked, “What’s this meant to be?”
The painting depicted silhouettes of children, holding hands and walking in a line.
“Oh,” said the artist in a tone that would have served to discuss the ingredients for a pie. “Those are the children being led to the ice house to be frozen.”
“What?” gasped my friend’s mother.
The artist shrugged. “It was a dream I had.”
As we drove home that evening, the car was silent.
I later looked up the history of ice houses–usually partially underground storage facilities used to keep food cool before the invention of the refrigerator. Often the ice was chipped from an obliging water source and transported to the ice house. And folks, some of these places are scary. Like this one based in Eglinton, United Kingdom.
Some stories … you just can’t make them up.