Years ago a couple, the Andersons, moved to a little house on Ordway. Their neighbor was a little old man named Tim Macon, who lived alone now that his wife had died and his children had moved north. He was a perfectly delightful neighbor. He’d come over to help Mrs. Anderson dig bulbs. He could be counted on to watch the dog while they were on vacation. And when Mr. Anderson needed someone to stand under the hood of his old beater with him, Mr. Macon was knowledgeable and brought beer.
And one day, Mr. Macon died. He sat down to rest on the swing on his front porch and never woke back up. It was as mild a death as one might have. Which is, perhaps, why it didn’t seem to slow him down.
When the new neighbors moved in, the wife came running over to the Andersons’ one morning, almost in tears.
“I smelled bacon,” she said, as she started to calm down. “I heard bacon frying in the kitchen. I thought it was my husband. But he was still in bed with me. We went into the kitchen and…”
“There was bacon?” Mr. Anderson asked, half teasing.
“No, there was nothing, nothing but the smell of bacon frying in the pan.”
They calmed her down, convinced her she was dreaming, and sent her home.
Three days later, she was back.
“Come now.” she ordered. “Come now.”
They ran next door and, plain as day, they could smell cigarette smoke. Not the stale smell that might work its way out of paint or carpet, but fresh cigarette smoke.
“We don’t smoke,” the neighbor husband said.
“Mr. Macon?” Mrs. Anderson asked. “Is that you? Now listen, you are scaring the pants off these poor people. Why don’t you come and live with us? You know we don’t mind.”
I heard this story from the neighbor, which is why she remains nameless. She says that, after this, she never had any problems in the house–no ghostly bacon, no cigarette smoke.
But here’s the weirdest thing. So, years go by and the property values on Ordway go up and the Andersons decide to sell their house and move out on Lickton Pike, in the country. The new people who bought the Anderson’s house, after about six months, came over to the neighbors’ and said, “You’re not going to believe this…”
“How’d you know?”
“That’s our old home owner.”
“What should we do?”
“I don’t know. I’d call the Andersons and ask them.”
And you know what? The Andersons came back to their old house, told Tim Macon that he was freaking out this set of homeowners and that Lickton Pike was lovely; he should come and stay with them out there.
And it worked.