Stirling Moments

This October I was lucky enough to go on a trip to Scotland with my sister. The trip was a once in a lifetime trip. My mother had passed away in 1996 and I had made a promise to send her to Europe one day when she was alive. I never got to fulfill my promise to her until I decided to take a crystal from her grave in Santa Fe new Mexico with us to Scotland. So as you can see this journey was one with a purpose.

Sheila, my sister and I travelled to Edinburgh and finally up to Stirling Castle to stay for two days. Stirling Castle is where William Wallace first fought the English on Stirling bridge over the Firth of forth. Stirling is just what anyone would expect of an old castle. It's cold high walls still surround much of the city. It is the original Royal Palace for the Scots and also where Mary Queen of Scots spent some of her secluded, prison-like youth. Our guest house was built into the city wall from the Castle called the Back Walk. The lodging called the Woodside was one of very few places to stay in the area. When we arrived we were rather distressed to discover our rooms to be on the top floor of the Woodside (the top of the Castle Wall). This was more than a chore for myself as I am partially disabled. We arrived late and decided to eat at the local pub and retire early to our high abode. The beds were probably as old as the Wall itself and I needed to sleep in the same bed as my sister until the management could arrange a better mattress. The room was very cold and the bed where I was to have been sleeping was right next to the high windows overlooking the church steeple. The windows had been modernized by blocking in the original ancient sash and then installing storm windows. That night there was an amazing storm. Rain, extreme cold and high winds. All adding to the spooky old feel of the room. We fell asleep immediately in defense of the cold weather. I awoke around 1.00am to a sweltering hot room. I lay quietly and tried to decide if I wanted to get up and try to figure out the so-called heating system, eyes closed. When suddenly I felt someone shake me by the arm roughly. My eyes flew open and I asked my sister what she needed. She did not answer as she was asleep. I shook her and she awoke to my scared summons. As we listened we heard a slow dragging noise in the room which went off into the hall. I flew out of the bed and went and opened the door. Nothing was there! Ghost, wind, who knows? I know that someone shook my arm and what we heard. Who knows?

Submitted by Pegeen Foley, New Mexico, USA