Here there be ghosts…

Content alert: I’m about to get a lot woo-woo, and talk about things like ghosts and spirits. If you’re not up for that, please go read something else. Thank you.

It doesn’t look haunted!

Let me get something out of the way right up front – I believe spirits exist. I could go into a whole long post about the details of those beliefs, but why? What matters is simple – I believe a spiritual realm exists and that we lack the ability to truly understand it.

We live in an old building, as in built around 1855 old. It’s got a lot of history. On top of that, we entertain a lot. Many, many people come through our doors. With all of that history and human energy traipsing about, there’s bound to be some residue left over here and there.

I didn’t think too much about it when in the early days of living here I realized I could clearly hear people walking in the hallway. I assumed it was people upstairs. Ditto the sound of the door opening. Except… When we do hear the neighbors, it’s very clearly coming from outside our apartment. These sounds were not. But still, we’re in the city.

I didn’t think too much about it when I’d catch glimpses of something moving in the hallway. It looked like a shadow at first, then I thought it was a rat. Hey, we’re in Baltimore! Then I realized it was a cat. We don’t have cats.

I didn’t think too much about the occasional wafts of flowery perfume, pipe tobacco, wood smoke, baked goods or other oddities. We’re in an apartment. In the city. Next to a hotel. Smells travel.

Then someone else mentioned the cat, and two other people chimed in, “Oh, you’ve seen it too?!” There’s a large grey cat spirit that prowls our halls. Now if it would just start catching mice, I’d be eternally grateful.

That opened up other topics and we soon discovered that we weren’t the only ones hearing or seeing things.

  • People will clearly hear the front door open and someone moving about, but no one is there when they go to look (and they don’t hear the door close). And yes, the door is usually locked, and it’s always closed.
  • There are clear footsteps heard in the front hall. It can happen any time, day or night, and has caused people to go looking for who else is in the apartment (answer: no one).
  • Even when completely alone in the unit, you can clearly hear the movements of someone else in other rooms, and sometimes in the room you’re in.
  • Our front coat closet has caused several people to ask, “have you smudged here” or “do you guys want to clear this space?” Most people unconsciously choose to leave their coats in the hall outside the closet rather than open it. It’s the only “negative” feeling thing or space in the whole unit.

Those are just a few examples. And to answer the questions – yes, we’ve smudged and cleared and blessed and everything else’d the entire space. And yes, we’re going to do it again. It’s kind of like cleaning house – you don’t do it just once and then forget it.

As much as I believe all of those experiences (and a few of them were mine), it was my teenage stepson’s comment one morning that sort of put the bow on it for me. He’d fallen asleep on the couch, and over breakfast asked who had gotten up and gone out the door in the middle of the night. Ummm… no one. We were all sound asleep.

Aside from the slightly congested/unpleasant sense in the front coat closet, there is nothing negative in the place. There’s no malevolence, no evil spirit lurking in the shadows waiting to possess some unsuspecting soul. Though that might make good fiction, now that you mention it… hmmm… an old building with a closet that’s a secret doorway to some dark dimension.

So… be warned… if you come to our home. Here there be ghosts.