Thursday, April 12, 2012


* Submitted by Carol Kastelic

I spent the weekend down at my friend Deanna’s place in Belgrave, Victoria early last year, and vowed that I’d never visit her again ... unless she moved house.

She was quite unfazed about the noise in the night and the visitor to my room when we spoke of it after my first night’s stay.  In fact, she pretty much scolded me for being a ‘scaredy-cat’ and told me there was ‘nothing to be afraid of’.

Nothing to be afraid of!!  Rubbish!!

I’d headed off to bed at about 10pm, and within the first ten minutes or so I’d heard footsteps walking towards my bedroom door.  Assuming it was Deanna I’d called out for her to come in, but there was silence.  A moment later the footsteps walked right up to my bed, but I couldn’t see anyone or anything and the door hadn’t opened or closed.  I felt distinctly that someone (or something) was standing right next to where I was lying.  A shiver went right through me and I clicked on the bedside lamp to double-click that I was alone in the room.   There was no one and nothing to be seen.  But still I had an eerie feeling of being watched.

I dreaded to believe that I’d just been hearing things because I was so worn out from my long trip down from Dubbo, so I snapped off the light and snuggled down under the warm doona ready to drift off to sleep.
Next thing I knew I felt something (or someone) sit on the bed near my feet.  I distinctly felt pressure on the bed, and just froze on the spot.  I didn’t want to look  -  I didn’t want to know about it.  I just felt scared stiff  -  beyond scared  -  totally petrified.

I wanted to scream but nothing would come out.  Not only that, but somehow I was too scared to even make a sound, let along scream.  I held my breath instead for what seemed like forever.  Then all of a sudden the pressure released at the foot of the bed and whatever it was got up and walked back out the door  -  or rather  - through the door.

I just lay there frozen on the spot, too scared to move, and by then, too scared to sleep.  I lay awake for what seemed like hours.  

Eventually I summoned the courage to get up out of bed to get myself a drink and go to the loo  -  which I quickly regretted once out in the dark hallway.  I fumbled around searching for the light switch on the wall, but instead something/someone grabbed my hand.  I just about jumped out of my skin and screamed like a banshee.  The light flicked on at the other end of the hallway as Deanna didn’t bat an eyelid.  She told me not to worry about it  - it was just ‘Fred’.  

Fred!??  Yep, Fred  -  her resident ghost!

Apparently he’d been around for years;  and according to her, her next door neighbour knew all about it and had told her that he’d been hanging around for at least 20 years or so.

That didn’t help me at all  -  not one little bit!

We enjoyed our day together, Deanna and I doing touristy things in the Dandenong Ranges, visiting little boutique shops and enjoying a delightful picnic lunch amongst the gum trees and fern trees in the lush green setting of Sherbrook Forest.  At the end of the day though, I was loathe to return to Deanna’s home.  I’d be leaving the following day, but didn’t really look forward spending another night in that house.

Pulling up in the driveway, Deanna sensed my trepidation and assured me yet again that there was nothing to be afraid of.  I didn’t like the idea of another encounter with ‘Fred’, Deanna’s resident ghost, and I hoped the night would pass uneventfully.

All seemed to be going well, and by the time we’d finished dinner I’d relaxed.  I’d almost forgotten about ‘Fred’ as we drank some wine and laughed about old times.

A little tipsy by bedtime I was happy to go off the bed, looking forward to a good night’s sleep.  All seemed to be going to plan and I drifted off without a care in the world.

At around 2am though, I was woken by the sound of someone walking around the room and rifling through my open suitcase.  In my sleepy stupor I assumed it was Deanna looking for something.

I asked her what she was looking for, but got no reply.  All was silent.  I was certain someone was in my room, but couldn’t see anything or anyone.  Then I remembered about ‘Fred’ and felt a sense of dread from head to toe.  I just lay there not wanting to move an inch.

After what seemed like an age, I turned the bedside lamp on.  There was nothing and no one to be seen, but I still felt as though someone was in the room with me.  Just as the thought went through my mind the light beside me snapped off and all was dark again.  The rummaging sound started up again, but rather than becoming scared I actually got quite angry.  I threw back the doona, grabbed my robe and stomped off towards Dee’s room.  There was no way I’d be sleeping in that room.  I’d had enough.

I made Deanna scoot over and got into bed beside her.  She roused briefly and chuckled when I told her that ‘Fred’ had paid me another visit.  I heard faint footsteps walking down the hallway towards Deanna’s room, but decided that I wouldn’t let it bother me this time.  I hunkered down under the warm blankets and promptly fell back to sleep.

If anything else happened that night, I certainly wasn’t aware of it.

The following morning Deanna admitted to me that I’d been sleeping in ‘Fred’s old bedroom.  Great.

I was so glad to leave her house that day, and like I said earlier, I won’t be going back there again as much as I love my friend Deanna.  I just hope she decides to move house soon, or she can come and visit with me instead.

*  Submitted by Carol Kastelic

Saturday, April 7, 2012


* By Noelene Green

My Aunt Kathleen had the most hideous antique clock that sat pride of place in the middle of her mantel piece above the old gas heater in her loungeroom.

I’d always joked with her about how ugly it was and she’d rib me in return, promising that she’d leave it to me in her will.

As it turned out, Aunt Kathleen hadn’t been joking ...

I was backpacking through Europe and had stopped off in London for a week or so when I got the email from my mum, telling me that my favourite aunty had died in her sleep the night before.  The funeral was to be held the following Wednesday at 3.00 o’clock, so I made arrangements to be home in Australia in time.  My flight from Heathrow airport was due to leave at 3.00 the following afternoon.
I felt sad that Aunt Kathleen had passed over, but I also felt a sense of relief as I knew that she’d been suffering for some months prior to her death.

Her funeral was a bit of a circus as it turned out, but that was just the way she would have liked it.  Amongst the tears there was much laughter as we all spoke of Aunt Kath’s antics and adventures over the years.

The following Friday after her funeral, the family gathered at Aunt Kathleen’s home to sort through her belongings.  We all knew that meticulously organized Aunt Kath had put labels on all of her personal possessions, denoting who got what.

As it turned out, Aunt Kathleen’s ghastly antique clock had been left to lucky me.

As I gingerly packed the horrid old clock in my car it chimed 3 times, signalling that it was 3 o’clock on the dot.  Aunt Kath had always been a stickler about having the clock set at precisely the correct time.

Once home I placed Aunt Kath’s clock on a side-table in my loungeroom.  I would have preferred to hide it at the back of a wardrobe somewhere, or better still, not in my home at all, but out of love and respect for Aunt Kathleen I put it out on display.  

The clock didn’t make a sound again until 3.00 o’clock in the morning.  I heard it from my bedroom because it seemed to be so loud that it had woken me up.  I thought it odd that the dreadful old clock only seemed to chime at 3.00 o’clock day and night, but never at any other time.  I decided not to question it though and promptly fell back to sleep.

Two weeks after Aunt Kathleen’s funeral my mother dropped by for lunch, bearing old photos and assorted knick-knacks belonging to Aunt Kathleen.  The hours flew by as we chatted away catching up on who was doing what within the family.  At 3.00 o’clock Aunt Kathleen’s hideous old clock chimed 3 times.

Both Mum and I turned to look at the clock sitting boldly on the table.   We both commented on how ugly it was and chuckled about Aunt Kath bequeathing it to me as she’d always threatened to.  I told Mum that it only ever chimed at 3.00 o’clock day and night, but at no other time.

Mum looked at me with a surprised look on her face and reminded me that number 3 had been Aunt Kathleen’s favourite number.  It was the time she’d been born (on the 3rd of March), it was the time she’d chosen to marry, the time she’d diligently taken her daily afternoon nap, the time of her funeral, and also the time she had died.

A shiver ran through me when she’d told me the last piece of information.  I hadn’t known that part.  I knew Aunt Kathleen had passed in her sleep, but I hadn’t realized that 3.00 o’clock had been the exact time that she’d died.

I again turned to stare at the old clock, intrigued yet comforted in a strange kind of way.

I’ve kept the old clock on display in my loungeroom ever since, and it doesn’t seem so ugly to me anymore.  It still only chimes 3 times at 3.00 o’clock day and night.  Hearing it makes me think of my Aunt Kathleen, and I like to think that it is her, saying hello from beyond.

* True Story contributed by Noelene Green