Fast-forward several years. I’m in my early thirties, my parents are divorced, and now only Dad lives in the house. I was visiting alone, since my husband had to work. Dad said good night to be about 10 o’clock or so, and I remained on the couch in the living room, where I preferred to sleep. I was planning to read for a while, and did so until about midnight—when someone knocked on the garage door.
Let me explain—this is the internal garage door, the door leading into the house from the locked and alarmed garage. I froze. I couldn’t move, I couldn’t holler for Dad, I found myself useless and trapped on the couch.
The knock came again, several hard knuckles raps on the door.
I finally found my feet, and hurried upstairs to wake Dad. Dad agreed that the possibility of someone actually being in the garage was next to impossible, but he was disturbed enough to come downstairs and investigate. He turned on the garage lights, and checked everywhere, even under the vehicles. Nobody. Nothing. Just as he was conveying this to me—
—someone knocked on the house’s front door.
Dad ran past me, slamming the garage-to-kitchen door behind him, and checked the front stoop. Nobody—
—someone knocked on the garage/kitchen door.
We went back and forth like this several times, both terrified, Dad convinced that Someone Is Messing With Us, and I was convinced that it was It, whatever it was. Dad at one point suggested that the noise might be my cell phone, vibrating against the counter, but my phone’s battery was dead. Besides, we both knew a knock at the door when we hear it.
The knocking game (?) continued for about 15 minutes or so, until Dad announced loudly that we should ignore the knocking and go to bed. The knocking occurred once more, at the garage door this time, I assume in acknowledgement of his words, and then stopped.
This was the last major event. Dad heard footsteps a couple more time after that, then nothing. He’s sold the house, and a lovely family with young children lives there now. Whether or not they have experienced anything, I don’t know.
As I said, I was rather frightened those three times—if not actually terror-stricken—but, even in those moments, I never felt truly threatened. I have no explanation for this phenomena, which occurred sporadically from the mid-1980’s until Dad sold the house two years ago.
The activity started when the foundation began to split in two, due to shoddy construction. Our kitchen actually began to cleave in half. The house eventually had to jacked up, drilled into, and repoured–whole big construction mess. Paranormal activity seems to cluster/start/accelerate around construction/renovation.
Found in one of my reading journals, under my notes while reading Brad Steiger’s Real Ghosts, Restless Spirits, and Haunted Places:
–sound like the winding of a very large clock–desc. in two disparate cases–
Wilmington Mill, 1830’s, beg. p. 1, and Epwoeth Rectory, 1716, beg. p. 335 (the Wesley family)
desc. given in both cases exactly that way by the children in each family, not interpolated by someone else
Underneath these notes, I’d written:
I’ve heard the same noise @ our Charlotte house.
I’d forgotten that, but I now remember that I would hear such a noise from time to time.
And I am extremely familiar with that sound. Dad collects antique clocks, so part of his weekly–and, in some cases, daily–routine was to wind certain clocks in different rooms. I know the sound of aged mantel clocks and grandfather clocks being wound by key.
And, yes, happy ending: My parents are remarried, very well remarried, a year-and-a-half now.
related podcast episodes:
Part 1 of 2: Dollopween October 5
My earlier told ghost story, that took place in Revere, Massachusetts: http://thedollop.net/wp/blog/my-own-ghost-story/