24 Oct

Sharing an unexplained or for want of a better  word, ‘spooky’ experience is for many people far more difficult and embarrassing than sharing tales of an intimate sexual encounter.

The fear of course is that people will think you are; mentally unstable, a fantasist, attention seeker and possibly about to embark on some sort of religious or spiritual crusade.

I have always liked to think of myself as a rational, but open minded person, and I am about to confess to you that I have had many ‘spooky’ experiences and I don’t mean of the sexual kind, I actually mean paranormal encounters that I cannot explain.

So for Halloween, I am going to share with you one of my creepy and unexplained encounters, please don’t judge me, I will recount  exactly  what happened and I promise you I am not ready to crumble into insanity, just yet.

I was in my last year at sixth form, I had stayed on at my school in Farnham Surrey and as I lived in Fleet in Hampshire, I had to take a bus into college, usually two buses.  It was a routine I had become very accustomed to, there was a hierarchy on the school bus and I had now arrived at the top of that heap, and I got to choose where I sat on the bus which was usually at the back, where I could hopefully get a little bit of peace and quiet on the journey.

I always think the most chilling paranormal encounters occur in the bright sunshine of a busy street, rather than the archetypal bat strewn, graveyard at midnight.  That is far too Wilkie Collins, if ghosts, spirits wandering abroad really did exist, why would they just stick to the Hollywood script locations.

It was a balmy late summer’s afternoon when the bus pulled into my stop on the main road into Fleet, it was a busy road, the bus stop was opposite a petrol station and the road was constantly buzzing  with traffic as it was one of the main thoroughfares into Fleet town centre from Aldershot, Farnborough and other surrounding towns.

My stop was still a good walk into Fleet High Street, just short of two miles until you arrived at the shops.

As I stepped off the bus to walk home I was immediately faced with an extremely elderly gentleman directly in front of me.  If I had to guess his age, I would say he was in his late eighties and possibly his nineties.  He was immaculately dressed in a dark suit and homburg hat, but stooped over his walking stick and looked as if he could barely walk more than a few yards.

He was right in front of me and extremely close, there was no way I could easily walk around him, he raised his face to look into my eyes.  This is where I know many of you will think of me as a fantasist, but he looked into my eyes and I can only say that I felt he was looking into my soul, the only way I can describe it is I felt this aged man knew everything about me.  The look wasn’t just intense it absolutely shook me to my core.

“Can you tell me the way to Fleet High Street please”?  He asked me in a clear and strong voice that belied his age.  I was still disturbed by what had transpired between us, I wasn’t sure what it was but one thing I knew for certain is it wasn’t anything I had experienced before and it wasn’t ordinary or normal.

“Yes you just keep walking along this road, don’t turn and eventually you will come to the High Street, but it is a really long walk”

I managed to reply and looked at his physical state and his bent frame held up just by the stick of wood with rubber at the end.

“It is a really long walk, you would be better to get the bus”  I said with concern, still perturbed by the look that had passed between us, and becoming a little puzzled as to why a man in his condition would be shuffling along this road.  Where had he come from?  There were no old people’s homes nearby, why would he think he could walk that distance?   How would he not know where Fleet was it was clearly sign posted just by the bus stop.  One thing was for sure I knew he wasn’t going to make it more than a few hundred yards in his present aged and decrepit stooped state.

“Thank-you” he said looking again into my eyes, still intently but not with the power of his previous stare.

He looked down and slowly shuffled past me.  I was deeply as the younger generation would now say ‘weirded out’ by this encounter!  I knew this bizarre meeting was something out of the ordinary, there was no way on this earth he was going to make it to Fleet.  Five seconds must have passed, and you know my heart was racing and my mind was telling me don’t look back, no just don’t look back.  But that racing heart of mine won, you have to look back he could have collapsed, you can’t let that old man walk all that way.

Five seconds on a bright sunny day on a bustling urban road that is all the time that had elapsed!

I turned around and looked up that sunny main road, with no hedgerows, no fences, nowhere to hide even if this gentleman had been in the peak of condition he could not have escaped or hidden so quickly.

There was nobody behind me!  The bent double ancient and hypnotic dapper gentlemen had simply vanished into that sunny Hampshire air.

I scanned the horizon, I looked both sides of the road, I span round in scared disbelief, but my mind had always known, if you turn back around he would be gone.

It’s funny, you really do stand frozen to the spot, then suddenly your limbs spring into action, I turned back around and ran, ran as fast as my legs would take me I ran all the way home, never stopping once.

It is a encounter I have shared with a few people over the years, and it is one that is hard to actually convey, how can you really accurately describe what you felt when that man looked into your eyes and the fact that yes he did actually just vanish.

When I got home, I never told my mother, she had been ill and something just prevented me from ever telling her.

So this is my Halloween confession, I hope you enjoyed it.  Putting hand to keyboard and actually recounting this tale, it still gives me chills and I can be instantly transported back to those moments.

“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio than are dreamt of in your philosophy”!Image


  1. bebo2781 October 25, 2012 at 4:59 am #

    That is very freaky. Did you ever see the old man again? Maybe in a dream?

    If there is one thing that is certain, we are always surrounded by others that we may not always be able to perceive.

    We are never alone.

    Check this out and you’ll see what I mean: http://robertocguerra27.wordpress.com/2012/10/25/never-alone/

    • angelacollings October 25, 2012 at 3:28 pm #

      Hi there no never again, never in a dream either. I totally agree, one thing for sure the experience certainly changed me. Will go and check it out now x

  2. Roselle Graskey October 25, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

    I can believe it. I’ve had an encounter or two myself.

    • angelacollings October 25, 2012 at 3:30 pm #

      Just read your experience, thank you so much for sharing, really enjoyed and related to it x

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