I had one of the crumbiest Xmas holidays one year - in 1989 I’d been in a pretty serious bicycle accident and spend a lengthy part of year end in hospital. By Xmas time I was recovering well, but still bed ridden. I’d say it was pretty miserable being there during the festive season, but I was on the road to recovery, so it could be much worse!
My sleeping patterns would get out of sync, and I’d sometimes be awake in the wee hours when no one was around.
It was one of those times I first heard it. Someone was sniggering. It was in my room - the other patients were asleep. But what made this strange was that the sniggering was coming from under my bed! I put it down to my medication and nodded off.
Nothing happened for a couple of days. Then, a few days before I was due to leave, I wake up one night with the strange feeling my sheets were being tucked in. Very tight. I didn’t want to open my eyes, but said ’Hello’. No one answered but the tucking stopped.
The next day the old guy in the bed across from me asked why my family had been visiting me late at night. That creeped me out. My family had gone back interstate the week before when I was on the mend. I asked him what he saw and he said it was a woman, dressed like a nun.
The next night, the sniggering started again. I should mention that it sounded like a man - like a nasty, sinister kind of snigger. Like the guy was toying with me.
I again tried to ignore it. I figured it was coming from the floor below. After a while, partly fed up, but mostly curious, I leaned off the bed and peered under it. Nothing.
So I got comfy again, and started to nod off. That’s when my sheet got tugged and at the same time the male voice sneered "No”. Naturally I freaked. I yelled and woke everyone up. The nurse came in and - embarrassed - I said I’d had a nightmare.
When I packed to leave, I told the nurse about what had happened. She was new there and really sweet. She said she’d heard weird noises in that ward since starting there. She’d asked around and found out that there was an old matron who was said to wander the place at night and watch over people. Apparently she was stern, but kind. I bet she was the one tucking me in.
However, the nurse never heard of the sniggering guy, at least during my stay.
That’s it. I’ve got a few other creepy things that have happened before and since, which I’ll post down the track.
Just remember - always ride with your helmet on!