This one is kind of spooky and kind of just strange. When I first moved down here, the Shill came to visit me and I hauled her over to the Stones River Battlefield to go ghost-hunting. (Yes, nieces and nephews, if you come to visit me, your butt is getting hauled on one unsuccessful ghost hunt or another.)
The Stones River Battlefield is supposedly riddled with ghosts and it’s kind of got a creepy feeling about it. This creepy feeling is not assuaged by the fact that some homeowners who live at the edge of the National Park have yards full of religious statuary facing into the battlefield, as if they are the first line of defense against something awful. But, despite our best efforts, the scariest thing the Shill and I encountered was an unforeseen long walk.
So, as we’re leaving, we see, on the other side of the road, a strange walled-off area near the cemetery. We decide to stop and go up and take a look. Here, (I hope; it’s my first blog photo) is a picture of what we found inside the wall.
As you can see, it’s a big cube monument surrounded by graves: graves of dead Midwesterners. “These are our boys,” I say to the Shill as we wander around looking at the gravestones. Now, it’s an utterly still day; there’s no traffic and no trains. I look over to the area on the right of this photo and I see that some of the stones are white (which you can see here as well). I walk over to take a closer look, to see if I can figure out why the stones are different.
And just as I step onto the nearest grave to take a closer look at the headstone, two osage oranges drop onto the ground at the exact same time. It scared the shit out of me. I holler and jump back. The Shill says, “Oh my god, did you hear that?” And I say, “What?” “I thought I heard someone laughing.”
Okay, fine, skeptics, I’ll admit, we were geared up to have something strange happen and the laughter could have been imagination. But what is the likelihood of two osage oranges hitting the ground at the same time if there’s nothing to shake them loose? Isn’t it more likely that one would drop causing the weight on the branch to shift, causing the other one to come loose, thus resulting not in them both hitting the ground at the same time, but one hitting slightly later?
Well, hmm, it was scary when it happened, but now I’m sort of convinced we were freaked out by a strange, but not supernatural, arboreal occurrence.