shot of sass, served on (n)ice

Friday, October 31, 2008

In the Shadows

I think I have the dubious honor of collecting the most paranormal experiences of any of the Smartinis. At the time I wrote that post, I was still living in the house on Grace Street, and I couldn't quite recount the things that happened in that house. It made them too real, and I figured if I didn't say them, then I could dismiss them. I certainly didn't have the same number of encounters that I had in college, but I did have some...including one story I've never told...until now.

When you came into the house at Grace Street, you were in a small, open foyer with an apartment on your left and right. The house, built in 1818, was converted into these apartment units in the 1920s. Past the apartment on the right was the beginning of the staircase - just four steps to a landing and then a full pivot to go up the next flight of 8 or 9 steps. And then another landing, another pivot, another 4 or 5 steps to the second story landing. My apartment door was on the left.

The staircase went up the core of the house, so there were no windows. It was painted this horrible mauve color and lit with a few wall sconces. I remember that it was dark outside - late in the day in the wintertime - and so the hallway was extraordinarily dark. I was unlocking my door when I saw movement out of the corner of my left eye. I turned and saw on the far wall a shadow. And not just any shadow.

I saw the fully formed shadow of a woman...her silhouette was turned forward at first as though she was on the landing below me facing the wall, and then it turned to the side and started bobbing down the stairs. I could that the dress she wore must have had a fitted bodice and then a full skirt. And she wore a mob cap and her hair was curled. She moved swiftly and silently down the stairs until she was swallowed in the shadow of the landing. She made no sound - no whispers, no sound of swishing skirts or boot heels on the wooden stairs.

And all of that - thought it stopped my heart and raised the hair on my neck - probably happened in about 5 seconds. The blink of an eye. And then she was gone.

I saw her just that one time, but I remember it so clearly - I can still see that shadow on the wall. And after that, I wondered if the strange shadow that seemed to block the light in the kitchen when I had my back to it and briefly cease the reflection of the pendulum in the glass cabinets over head...wasn't the lady in the staircase. Because the kitchen was the only room in the house that ever scared me and that ever made me feel - in those eerie, shadowy moments - like maybe I wasn't alone.

Happy Halloween, my lovelies....

4 tips left at the bar:

niki said...

I would never, ever have stayed there after that. Thank you so much for treating us to that story on Halloween!

penelope said...

Shite! That is quite a story. I'm not sure I could have stayed there, either!

mendacious said...

Very nice!
Though I think ghosts don't appear to me because I might yell at them. I'll give it time. My apt in chicago felt like this also, but only in the hallway oddly btw the kitchen and the bathroom. It was weird.

Andi said...

freaky!! And so odd how you and M both had places that just made you feel. . .not alone! eeeek!