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Sometimes good stuff happens in just the nick of time.

Linda called just as I was starting to paint the upstairs hall here … and invited me over for a steak dinner. Gotta love it. Avoiding work AND a steak dinner. It doesn’t get much better than that.

So I picked up some potatoes, along with the requisite butter and sour cream, and headed over to her house.

Once inside I petted the dogs … all three of them … and sat down to chat with my friend. 

In the background the TV was set to the Travel Channel … and one of their ghostly travel shows. I dismember the name.

Now far be it from me to doubt the supernatural. Lord knows enough spooky things have happened to me in my life.

Years ago, I and my other half at the time had journeyed to San Francisco where we decided to tour the Winchester House. I got an uneasy feeling the moment I got out of the car.

For those of you who are not familiar with this location, it was the home of Sarah Winchester of the Winchesters who made the guns.

It is haunted. So they say.

Although this is disputed, popular belief holds that a Boston medium told Winchester that she had to leave her home in New Haven and travel West, where she must “build a home for yourself and for the spirits who have fallen from this terrible weapon, too. You must never stop building the house. If you continue building, you will live forever. But if you stop, then you will die.”

When we went there we were told about the hauntings and the way the number thirteen was rampant there. So I started taking pictures. My camera broke.

On picture number thirteen.

There were some other odd happenings that day as well … but the oddest was when we were on the walking tour. As we were led through the house, I said to my other half “You know this reminds me of a dream I used to have all the time a few years back. In the dream there was a house a lot like this. Only my dream house had seven stories. And I could fly to the top floor ….”

I continued to tell him about the dream in all its glorious detail.

He was not amused. For some reason he hated to hear my dreams. Since they were, after all, dreams and not reality. But they were such interesting stories. I thought.

But I digress.

I had no sooner finished my dream story and we turned the corner to another room with pictures on the wall. And there … in one picture … was a house that was basically identical to the one of my dreams.

I stopped and also stopped breathing.

On reading the fine print, it was explained that this was a picture of the Winchester House … when it had seven stories … before they took off the top floors.

So when people tell me things that seem a bit beyond the pale, I tend to give them a pretty wide berth.

Recently, I also found myself at the location of a medium. And as I may have mentioned the other day, she said several things which were spot on.

Oh, and the thing about that black aura.

But no matter, I was open to the ideas being presented on the TV today before dinner. And the folks who were being interviewed seemed normal. Not a crazy amongst them. But then how crazy is crazy?

There were stories of haunted houses, haunted battlefields and haunted restaurants. All kind of spooky stuff.

Dinner was superb.

While eating there was a sense of someone watching … something unusual going on … eyes … something …

Oh.

It was the dogs.

OK, not so unusual. They wait around on the off-chance that a piece of meat … or anything for that matter … decides to make a break for it and reaches the floor.

When suddenly there was a tapping sound. Somewhere around the refrigerator.

I had heard this same tapping the last time I was over there for a meal. And tonight, as she had then, Linda said “Oh it’s probably just Mary.”

Mary would be the ghost who lives at her house.

So she says.

Mary has been a regular visitor at Linda’s house since she moved in there many years ago. Mary has been responsible for many unexplainable happenings in the house. Mary is quite friendly and has been known to locate lost items. Mary is a ghost.

Linda is not crazy either.

But it was odd to have that same tapping, Mary or not. And I moved several things beside the refrigerator and on top of the refrigerator looking for some culprit or another.

There was none. The tapping stopped.

After dinner we adjourned to the Living Room, with a plate of excellent Dump Cake for dessert. And to watch just a bit more of the ghost extravaganza. Once a few more supernatural tales were told, the odd tapping sound came to us again.

In my bravest manner I got up … deciding to confront said apparition and have a talk … or something.  I walked slowly to the kitchen to solve the mystery. It didn’t help that there were unholy shrieks coming from the television.

Following the noise I realized that it almost sounded like it was coming from the refrigerator itself. Maybe even the freezer.

So I yanked open the door.

The sound was coming directly from … the built-in ice maker which had yet to be attached to the water system.

Calling Linda, she checked and sure enough the “On” lever had been accidentally activated.

Quickly remedying the situation we went back once more to the Living Room to laugh about the whole situation.

Ghost? Ice Maker?

Well, they both are cold.

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