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Tony Lyver, Newfoundland, Canada
February 2004

So, ghosts are unimaginably malicious and supposedly caught only at night when we are alone and vulnerable to imagination and the suggestions loneliness can inspire.

Yet, I have never known this to be accurate.

We live in the smallest town in Newfoundland and maybe a little isolated but there is a series of encounters that have made my self proclaimed logical scientific mind accept the experiences as, if not natural in terms of science, being common and real.

I was surprised and relieved to hear sensitivity mentioned in the movie "The Shipping News." It helped add a broader acceptance to this and deepen the mystery. My mother and I seem sensitive to those that recently departed and even those about to leave this world. Or at least aberrations seem to happen around the time of someone's leaving us.

On her return from a February evening walk, I had heard my mother say to my grandfather it was strange he was sitting on the couch when he was just outside stacking wood and told her there was a lot he had cut in someplace other than his usual spot, enough for a winter.
He agreed there was more wood in that spot and laughed, but a few minutes later, he was dead.

Next morning I was walking with an uncle and my younger brother when we saw a large blue ball of shimmering light appear, fall to the ocean, and, after breaking into seven smaller balls, dissipated before touching the calm morning water, never making a sound.

Eight months later a friend and I walked outside in the starry dark of an autumn night to see half a rainbow appear at apex then travel downward to disappear from that point after the bottom went behind the trees. It was in the direction of the graveyard and when told, our story was explained as its being someone who had died in Ontario that morning amid controversy over his family's inability or unwillingness to bury him at home. People accepted the as being the truth.

When my grandmother died, I was sitting with a friend at my mother's house when a knock came on the door?twice. Second time I was in no hurry to go out to see nobody was there, but went after three more sets of three knocks?still nobody there. So, we went out for the evening.

An older friend of my grandmothers came that morning to ask why my grandmother was outside her house walking around talking to herself while wearing a brown dress with a white blouse, she was supposed to be in hospital. These were the clothes my grandmother was to be buried in and the lady I am talking about had no idea grandmother had died.

Another relation died and before my mother found out, she had asked a friend to come see someone walking around the graveyard just across the road from the house. The person had ignored the gate, jumped the fence, walked in, and seemed to be looking for someone special but had gone in the few seconds mother's attention was on the other lady.

It hasn't stopped although I have been away from the country for years. I got the call to come home to see my never before met dad before he died. There had been some problems getting the news to me in China so when I heard, I left right away only to spend the night in Vancouver with friends. As I was on China time, I was awake at 12:45 am and overcome by a need to be outside. I walked out to sit on the steps and closed my eyes in a feeling of nausea I had never experienced before. It lasted a long time, and when my eyes were closed I saw a door, huge and heavy looking and although so very bright, I could see detail. The door stayed for a few seconds before starting to close together from the corners until only a slit remained before the light finally turned off. I became physically ill and after a few minutes walked inside to see it was just after 1:00 am. My father was pronounced dead at 5:35 am Newfoundland time, 1:05 am in Vancouver.

Of course, I told my mother this and she revealed how he had been there twice in the past two weeks. First time it happened at 5:30am, about a week before, and then at 5:30 the morning he died. She knew this, as this is when her husband gets up for work. A knock had come on the front (never used) door just before the alarm rang. Waking both, and upon inspection, nobody was found and there were no tracks in the half meter of snow on the deck.

Although I would rather see death notices by e-mail or in the papers, it seems there are events we cannot explain. I would love to see something like this when someone is born, what a way to come into the world but whatever makes it happen it is not scary as ghost stories usually are. Instead, it has slowly become a fact of death, totally acceptable and worth talking about.

Tony Lyver, Newfoundland, Canada
00:00 / 01:04
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