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Norwich Bulletin - 10/29/2006

Cat Ghost Stories

It's that time of year again when everything that is normal becomes suspect - and that includes the mysterious creature that is known as a cat. Shrouded in mystery, the cat has long been linked with witches, gods and ghosts. So it is only natural that on Halloween the spooky cat stories come to light.

Redlands, California boasts of several ghostly cats, the scariest being the headless cat that prowls the Gates of Hell in the upscale area of the city, constantly walking up a staircase that leads to nowhere. There was once a stately Victorian mansion that now exists only in the memories of the people in the area and what is left is only shadows and concrete steps. Here the headless cat walks….

But that's not the only ghost cat that walks Redlands. Two cats that lived outside Rama Garden, an exclusive Thai restaurant, are seen regularly by the employees. However Boots and Peach died six years ago! But that doesn't seem to stop them from joining their living cat friends that get their daily meal from this cat friendly restaurant.

Fairport harbor which is on Lake Erie has a historic lighthouse halfway between Cleveland and Ashtabula. This lighthouse once was used as a sentinel, guiding mariners in the 19th century to safety at the mouth of the Grand River. The wife of the lighthouse keeper was bedridden for most of her life due to a serious and lengthy illness. Her bedroom was on the second floor of the lighthouse and she had several cats to keep her company.

Years later when the lighthouse was being turned into a museum, the workers spoke of an eerie presence in the now darkened tower. The curator who lived at the lighthouse once it was a museum swore she saw the gray ghost of a cat on several occasions. Not a woman given to fancy, it was hard not to believe her, although there were skeptics. However, in the year 2000 when workers were installing air conditioning, they found the mummified remains of a gray cat.

Ghost cats also have a way of showing children their parent's lies. In a province in Ontario, Canada, a young girl had her pet cat at her father's apartment. When her father announced he was moving into an apartment that did not allow cats he assured he the cat had gone to live on a wonderful farm that belonged to one of his friends.

The little girl was sad to lose her pet, but happy that the cat would now have a lot of space to roam and be free. But less than a week later she approached her mother and told her that she knew her cat was dead. When the mother confronted her ex husband, he admitted to having the cat euthanized two days before. When asked by her mother how she knew her cat was dead, she said it was simple to figure out since her cat had been living in her room for the last two days.

Then there was the woman who drowned her sick cat in 1892, thinking she was putting it out of her misery. Shortly afterwards she opened the door to see the same cat reappear dripping with water at her door. She yelled to her servants who swore there was no cat there; just water on the porch.

Our living cats are also good at telling us when there are ghosts around and about. Many times people will be sitting with their cat and the cat, for no apparent reason, will begin arching its back and hissing, obviously upset by whatever it was seeing. There have been tellings of people who have smelled perfume or a pipe where there was no one. The consensus is that the cat, who has a sixth sense much better than that of a human, could "see" the ghostly figure.

Halloween is a time for ghosts and ghostly stories. I hope you have enjoyed mine.

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