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He's Still Around

Erika, MN, USA
September 2001

When I was going to college, I rented a bedroom in a large old house in Winona, MN. There were four bedrooms getting rented out to four different girls. The old lady, Betty, who owned the house had run a foster home when her husband was alive, but he had passed away and the kids had grown up. The girls came and went while I lived there and all of them were very nice.

We spent a lot of time in our separate bedrooms and only saw our housemates occasionally (at one point, a girl lived in the house for three months before I even met her).

After living in the house for about five or six months, I started to notice things happening?

I would get up in the middle of the night to visit the bathroom almost every night. I hardly ever turn on any lights while doing this. One night, I got up to go to the bathroom, and upon the return to my room, found my door closed. This was odd because I didn't close it, but I just assumed it had swung shut for some reason or another. When I tried to open the door, the knob turned and the door opened a few inches? and stopped dead. It wouldn't budge no matter how hard I pushed or pulled. It felt like someone was on the other side of the door, holding onto it. I stopped and looked at the door. Then, I tented my fingers and pushed on the door, which swung open quick easily. I went inside the room and search for something that could have obstructed the door, but NOTHING was near the path of the door.

Shortly after that, whenever I would be in the house by myself, I would hear someone walking up and down the stairs (very creaky wooden stairs). It was the distinct sound of men's shoes on wood. I would go to the empty stairwell and call for my housemates and no one would answer, I would go upstairs to the bedrooms and they would all be empty. Sometimes, Betty's desk lamp would just turn on by itself when I walked by the desk. None of these events scared me in anyway. I never felt a scary presence or anything malicious about the acts.

After I lived in the house for about a year, one of the newer girls asked me if I ever heard someone on the stairs when I was there by myself. I joked with her that there were ghosts all over in the house. She actually got a little frightened and, to make her feel better, I told her I would ask Betty if she knew about any ghosts in the house. A few days later, I was sitting in the kitchen drinking a cup of coffee, when Betty came and sat down and started to page through a magazine. I told her about the footsteps on the stairs that we had heard, but didn't have to ask her if there were any ghosts in the house. She laughed at my stories and told me that the girls in the house were always telling her that things happened there. "It's just my husband," she said. "He's still keeping an eye on me after all these years. He likes to play pranks on the girls, that's all."

I thought about what she had said and it seemed right. The events that had happened seemed like an elderly man poking fun at young college girls. After that, anytime I saw the lamp turn on at the desk, I would point to it and smile and say, "I saw that!" and it would shut right off.

Erika, MN, USA
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