Running From Ghosts (Literally)

I shared a ghostly experience that happened at my childhood home  a few posts ago. Unlike that ghostly reassurance, the second time I encountered a spirit I ran for my life.

My dad and I visited Santa Fe, New Mexico when I was fourteen. We stayed with my Dad’s buddy Dan.

Dan lived on a beautiful estate that was on the outskirts of town. There were three houses on the property. The main home was a beautiful stucco building filled with fine furniture, a grand piano, and classy artwork. The people who owned the estate were not residing there at the time. The second home was the caretaker’s house where Dan lived. The third house was the guest house. The buildings were new and my Dad and I were excited to stay at such a nice place. We stayed in the guest house.

This gate and courtyard are very similar to what was on the estate where we stayed.

While the houses were new, the grounds had a lot of history. At the beginning of the private drive, there was an old church. There were two graves on the property that I stumbled upon my first day of arrival (I was always eager to explore). The graves were well-tended and I thought that it would be a lovely resting place to spend eternity, gazing at the lovely desert of New Mexico.

The first night we listened to Dan play guitar. My Dad gently nudged that it was getting late. I knew that he wanted to catch up with his old friend and relive some of their glory days. So I got ready for bed and started my book. The room where I was staying backed up to a fairly steep hillside, it was peaceful and quiet.

My Dad stayed up late with Dan and I marked my page and turned off the light. I couldn’t relax and a feeling of dread started to creep over me. My armpits prickled in a way that preludes nervous sweat. I was terrified to look at the window that faced the hillside and I buried myself beneath the blankets, even though I was soaked in sweat. Pure hatred filled the room. I spent hours praying that the evilness would leave. I finally fell asleep and the next morning the room felt normal again.

I tried to brush off the strange occurrence, even though I dreaded the thought of sleeping in that room again.

We spent the day visiting historical sites and when we got back to the estate it was almost sunset. I wanted to explore and my Dad and Dan went inside to listen to music. I started to climb up the hillside that bordered the property. There was a lot brush that was about waist-high. The views were beautiful and I remember looking down at the estate and the room where I was staying. I could see the two graves that were cozied up to each other. Smoke was gently pouring out of the chimney from Dan’s house.

The sun was setting and I decided to head home before it got dark. I was probably only a half mile up the hill when I felt it again. The dark force had surrounded me. I heard the brush all around me start to snap and crunch, but nobody else was around. The eerie silence projected each branch breaking. I started to run and behind me I heard crashing and snapping as something chased me down the hill. The most terrifying noise (and as I type this I’m getting goosebumps) was a rattle shaking in my ear. Like someone had filled an empty container with sand: swish swish swish. The entire time I was screaming in my head I shouldn’t be here!

When I made it to the bottom I crashed through the front door of Dan’s house and fell into my father’s arms shaking. My dad was terrified that I was hurt and he raced outside when I told him something chased me down the hill. He didn’t see anything but told me to stick close for the remainder of our stay. Bless my Dad for believing me (or at least my fears) when I told him it was a spirit.

That evening I asked my dad to come with me to the guest house so that I wouldn’t feel so lonely. He did, but he ended up getting a stomach bug and was ill all night. I hid under the blankets again because the evil presence came back and filled the room with rage.

For whatever reason I was unwelcome, and I was thrilled to oblige when we left.



Happy Halloween. I’m going to go make hot chocolate and listen to Christmas music to shake this memory.

-Rachel McKee

Cover image found here.


Author: Rachel McKee

I love reading about everything. I'm not a book snob. Lately I have been "reading" a lot of picture books to my toddler and baby. In my past life before motherhood, I was a professional technical editor and writer.

16 thoughts on “Running From Ghosts (Literally)”

  1. The rain is falling and dark black crows are flying among the dripping trees – how delicious to be reading your story today and how relieved I am to hear that you are going to make some hot chocolate (and listen to Christmas music) to dispel any lingering spookiness!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve had experiences I can’t quite explain or rationalize away, either. When we first moved in to the house where we are now, I’d often think I heard strange noises, or voices (sort of like on a radio) in the corners at night. There had only been two families living on this property before us, and the one person who died here was 90 and simply had heart failure after being ill for years. (It was my husband’s mother, so I even could humanize and relate to that death, and it wasn’t scary at all.) But something was not right, and I knew it. I found out from my husband that in his mother’s family that had been a mass homicide, 4 people at once, committed by a relative. Very tragic. In the basement there was a lot of my husband’s mother’s old furniture, broken appliances, etc. Among these objects was a suitcase (the saddest suitcase ever, all moldy and icky) that had been brought from the house where that crime happened. Not even believing in something like a possessed object, I insisted we get rid of the suitcase. It went to the dump, and we got a little superstitious, and spread holy oil on all the windows in the house. But it worked! No more strange noises in the middle of the night, or the feeling that something wasn’t right. Only the cat occasionally knocking something off a counter at 4 a.m. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


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