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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Little girl of Aisne Avenue, Lorraine

Meeting Sarah

I still don’t know if it was a dream, or if I really woke up and saw the little girl.   
She was a pretty little blonde of about 4 years old.  She was standing outside in the rain, sobbing.   
Her little shoulders were shaking and she looked so frail in her thin white summer dress.  Then, suddenly she vanished.  That was the first and the last time that I saw her.   

But, that was only the beginning of the years to come, of living with the little ghost girl.   

*From here on, I’ll be referring to the girl as ‘Sarah’ – though I never called her by a name, she was too real and, the experience too personal to refer to her as a ‘little ghost girl’.

The Dream and Ghost Mom
A few nights after seeing her, I had a strange dream of a couple who had ‘lost’ their child.  I did not recognise anyone in the dream.  They kept on referring to the child as being ‘lost’ – I did not know whether it was meant literally though or, if she was deceased.  

 For days, the dream weighed heavily on my mind and, I couldn’t understand why.  A few days later, the topic came up in a conversation with my grandfather.  He was a strong and wise soul with a keen interest in anything metaphysical.  Though we didn’t speak of it often, I always had the sense that he saw spirits more often than what he admitted to.  

I started telling him about my dream as it was still troubling me.   
Soon, he interrupted me, asking me if I had the dream on the Thursday night – which I did. 
He grinned and, told me to continue my story.  Though, I was confused as to how he pin-pointed the exact night, I continued.   

When I was done, he told me that there was a ghost in their grannyflat (which was opposite my room) on that same night.  He was awoken by a noise in their lounge.  When he entered the lounge, he saw a lady frantically looking for something.  He realised that it was not a living human being – it was a ghost.   

Carefully he walked towards her, gently asking her what she was doing.  

 She replied ‘Ek soek my baba’. 

He told her that he would help her look for the child. Shortly after he started searching, the lady disappeared.  What are the chances of my grandfather experiencing ghost activity and, my having the troubling dream on the same night – and, for both being related to a lost child.  Was this related to our little Sarah?

Experiences with Sarah 
Since the night I first saw Sarah, it was as though she decided to make her presence known more often.  I would mostly get a slight chill, feel as though I’m being watched and then get the sense that someone was standing there, that someone being Sarah. On occasion, I would see a swift movement, or the small figure of a girl in the corner of my eye.  Often one would hear light footsteps up and down the passage, like that of a child. 
And, if one said  ‘Hey, dogtertjie, hou op, jy maak ‘n geraas’, the footsteps would stop. 

My grandmother never spoke about ghosts, hauntings or anything paranormal – I always thought that she was quite the opposite of my grandfather and ‘didn’t believe in weird stuff’.  She overheard me saying something about Sarah one day, and asked me what I was talking about.  When I told her about my experiences, she (shockingly!) responded ‘Oh, so you’ve seen her too?’.  My grandmother told me that she had sometimes seen the towel in the bathroom lift and shrivvel slightly as though a child was drying their hands.

Who is Sarah?

As Sarah’s activity became more frequent, I decided to somehow find out more about her.  Researching any child deaths in the neighborhood would hopefully turn up something to understand who she was and why she was still there.  I found some contacts to assist in my research and, was delighted in the prospect of finding some answers.  My poor family had to endure my endless chattering about it the dinner table every night.   
But, that soon came to an unfortunate end.  


One night something terrifying happened.  
 I woke up, with what I thought to have been an intruder choking me.   
The black figure was sitting on my abdomen, one hand pinning my arm down and, the other hand firmly gripping my throat.  I tried to see his face but, I couldn’t, it was too dark and tears were welling up in my eyes. I tried to push him off, but he was too strong. 

I couldn’t scream, I couldn’t breath.   

I still remember kicking and hoping it would wake my parents.  Tears were running down my face, I thought I was going to die.  

 Suddenly, he vanished!  I grasping my throat – still aching and not able to scream.  Frightened and confused I looked around the room – he was gone.

There was no intruder.   
It was not a real person trying to kill me.  
I believed it was a warning from a spirit who didn’t want me to investigate Sarah’s background.   
I was a mere 18 years old and didn’t have the guts to persue it any further nor, any interest in finding a way to keep myself safe from the dark spirit/ghost – the experience frightened the living daylights out of me.   

To this day I wish that I had the knowledge then, that I have now.  
If only I had taken measures to deal with the dark ghost, protect myself and to find out who Sarah was.  
If only I could find out what had happened to Sarah and, if the dark ghost had something to do with her death.

The Goodbye

The most memorable experience with Sarah was when we moved away.

The last load of our belongings was taken away and the house was an empty shell.  I was home alone, busy getting ready to have a bath and go to work.  The only belongings left in my room were my uncovered bed, work clothes and my handbag.  I picked the handbag up from the floor by its shoulder strap and placed it on my bed to get something out of it.   

While having a bath, I heard the faint childlike footsteps up and down the passage, infront of the bathroom door.  
I knew it was Sarah, after all the years I could distinguish her faint steps from anyone else’s.  And besides, no-one else was home. 

Sadenned by the realisation that moving house might mean leaving Sarah behind, I decided to explain to her what was happening.  It felt like I was telling a little sister that I’m going away forever and, couldn’t take her with.  I felt terrible.   

I went back to my room to get my handbag so I could head for work. As I grabbed the handbag by the shoulder strap, I saw that the one end of the strap was loose.   

The little metal ring that joins the strap to the bag was missing.  It was like that of a keyring so couldn’t ‘snap’ or break off.  It had been removed and was nowhere to be found – not on the empty floor, the uncovered bed nor, under my towel.  The ring had vanished.   

Suddenly, I sensed Sarah again at the door and, I could’ve sworn I heard a little giggle.   

Then I knew, by doing something she’s never done before – by removing the strap’s ring and making it disappear (probably hiding it somewhere) - my little Sarah was saying goodbye.

*******************The photograph underneath the heading is not that of Sarah - it is merely a photograph added for effect.****************************************

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