For those of you who love a good horror story and you fans of the freaky, I’ve got a new post on the Huffington Post’s Weird News site about 5 Haunted Places I’d Love to Stay the Night! You can read it here and comment on where you’d stay. I think the list could easily be in the hundreds once we all get going!
I was five years old the first time I saw an apparition. I was half-asleep, the pre-dawn crickets had gone silent, and I was stirred into waking by a gentle pulling on my toe. When I opened my eyes I saw my paternal grandfather standing at the foot of my bed. He smiled. I slid my toes out of the covers into my slippers, preparing to lean into a nice big hug, but he was gone. I thought it strange, but to a five-year old the very regular world can seem like a strange place, so I drifted back to sleep. The next morning when I told my mom about my nighttime vision, she burst into tears. My grandpa had died just after midnight, perhaps an hour before he visited me.
As I grew up and started collecting strange stories of the supernatural variety, I found that this kind of manifestation is actually fairly common. An after-death farewell. Yet the idea of visitors from the great beyond is a subject that few dare to discuss in open company (unless you are hanging out with me) lest their experiences be ridiculed or their ideas sound crazy.
What kind of paranormal pasts do y’all harbor? What freaky things have happened to you?
Recently I had the privilege of staying overnight at Preston Castle, an old boy’s reform school in Ione, California. It looms above the sleepy little gold rush town, peering down upon the vineyards and scraggly pines with half-shuttered window-eyes and a toothless brick grin. When we arrived the moon was on the rise, nearly full and streaming through the holes in the roof to the floorboards below. Bats swept in and out of the rafters just below the nest of white barn owls, that screeched all evening long. Hair pulling, whispers, orbs of light, and words of warning were but a few of the delights we encountered that night. As midnight approached we waited in breathless anticipation to see what wonders the witching hour would unfold.
Tonight, as the witching hour approaches, I will be in conversation with the one and only George Noory on Coast to Coast AM. I hope you can join us for a couple of hours of bizarre stories and freaky facts, and maybe you can even call in! 10pm -12pm, PST.
And perhaps you too can visit the beautiful and haunted Preston Castle. Proceeds for overnight ghost tours benefit the restoration. You can also read more about the history of the castle, including philanthropy, abandonment, and murder, on their website! And they will be hosting a Halloween Haunt!