Sunday, October 4, 2009

Time for Spooky Tales

My grandmother was a large part of my life. I stayed with her and my grandpa during every school break because she spoiled me. There, I was the only child and not one of four, and I loved her crazy stories and jokes. If I was with her, I was happy.

Because my grandpa had such violent nightmares, Granny and I shared her bed, and I became very used to the familiar smell of Ben Gay she used on her arthritic joints. I associated the medicinal odor with her--comforting, warming and safe.

Grandpa was the first to pass away, and Granny moved in with my mother. When Granny went to join Grandpa, I flew down from No. Cal to So. Cal to help my mother with the arrangements. The night after the funeral, Mom and I were upstairs in the loft watching TV and trying to rationalize the loss of someone we both loved so much. For whatever reason, I decided to go downstairs for something, and halfway down, I walked into a wafting cloud of familiarity.

I paused. "Are you using Ben Gay?", I yelled back up to mom.

"No," she answered, with a definite questioning tone.

"Never mind," I called out. How could I explain what I suspected? Would Mom think me daft...I thought I might be. But the smell grew stronger, stealing the existing air around me and replacing it with Granny's nightly odor. I stood and inhaled, puzzled, and frozen in place.

"I smell it, too." I heard Mom say.

I knew then that I wasn't loony. Those same familiar feelings from all my summers of comfort and safety enveloped me, and I knew Granny stopped by to let me know that she was okay and watching over us.

Do I believe in ghosts? Yep. Since then, I sure do.


Anonymous said...

I have two ghost stories about my grandmother...One at my honeymoon rental and the other at my sisters home...her image..the turning of the door knob...the cold breeze passing by...the picture falling off the wall of grandmother's wedding picture...TRUE

Anonymous said...

I have a secret....I can only read in short sperts without getting a server headache...TRUE The other GS..

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