WHEN I was just seven years old I experienced death for the very first time.
Not bereavement at first hand I hasten to add, but the sudden death of a classmate.
And over the past three days it has come back to haunt me again.
For those who have read my two posts: Something is happening, but you don’t know what It Is and There’s no exit in any direction… except the one that you can’t see with your eyes, what follows is quite poignant.
In my class at Victoria Road Infant School in 1964 was a bright-eyed young girl called Janet Brown. I remember she had dark brown hair tied back in two pigtails, a freckled face and always wore a dark green Gabardine coat.
But one Monday morning she did not come back to school.
Over the weekend she was run over and killed by a car while crossing the Upper Shoreham Road. She had been playing with friends in the nearby Buckingham Park. It hit all of us little ones hard and I remember we had a special school assembly for her and were given lectures about road safety.
But it didn’t end there for me.
Within a few days of being told of her death I began having a recurring nightmare.
It was simple dream which lasted no more than two minutes. Each time I was walking a pavement alone. The pavement was bordered by a green privet hedge and at the end was a white wicket gate. Leaning on the gate was Janet Brown and she asked me to play. But as I drew close to her I noticed a bright Half Crown coin beneath me. I bent down to pick up the coin and in doing so fell into a deep shaft. At that moment a huge rocket/missile emerged from the shaft and exploded. At this point I always awoke crying.
The series of events was repetitive – always exactly the same. I would often go to sleep at night terrified that I would dream it again.
This recurring nightmare lasted almost a year until I left Victoria Road Infants to go up to the junior school in a neighbouring town. Then it stopped as soon as it had started.
I have not had a recurring dream or nightmare since then… until now!
Since my wife Gill and I started investigating the strange and unexplained occurrences in our cottage kitchen late last week, a new dream has begun.
For three consecutive nights I have woken from what I can only describe as a similar recurring nightmare to the one I had 50 years ago.
It is plain in its simplicity…
This time I walk into our kitchen alone at night and sit at the breakfast table. I look down at our cat in his basket (the basket is placed in the Drop Spirit zone at night, for no other reason than it is close to a radiator). Alongside the cat and kneeling down is a young girl, aged about six years old. She is stroking our grey haired pussy. The girl has unkempt light brown hair, a freckled face and sad blue eyes. She is wearing a beige coloured dress with a distinct tie band around her waist. She looks up at me and says: “I like cats”. She tells me her name is Edith. Then she asks me: “Do you have any bread, Sir?” I stand and walk to our bread bin and get a crust thick-sliced white for her. When I return she is running into our pantry and down a steep staircase out of sight. It is at this point I awake.
Last night when I woke at about 1.30am I was so unnerved by the dream that I switched on the bedside light and cuddled my wife in almost childlike fear.
So what lies beyond?
As I posted the other day, I have discovered that our cottage lies adjacent to an old rectory whose foundations date back to the 15th century, together with an ancient family burial ground. The rectory was demolished three years ago to make way for a supermarket development.
We also live 300 metres from a huge parish church with similar 15th century origins. I am now investigating whether any underground passages may have been built connecting the church with the old rectory.
My investigative hat is on. I am still a sceptic, but it is quite unnerving all the same.
Watch this space.