It is 9:10 pm and I just returned from a nighttime visit to Springer's Point. I wasn't alone. I was with 21 teachers spending a week on Ocracoke participating in an NCCAT (NC Center for the Advancement of Teaching) seminar. The seminar is entitled "Ghosts of the Coast" and we have been sharing creepy tales from the island, talking about what makes a good ghost story, and exploring the many family cemeteries in Ocracoke village.
This afternoon we listened to a "paranormal investigator" who explained the tools she uses to hunt for ghosts. These include EMF (Electro-Magnetic Field) meters, infra-red cameras, and digital & analog recording devices.
At 7 o'clock this evening we walked to Springer's Point and spent almost two hours in the eerie darkness there, under the canopy of live oaks and cedars, beside the lonely and forlorn cemetery, listening to the wind blowing through the gnarled and twisted branches above us.
The ghost hunter called for spirits to manifest themselves as we stood in a circle around the old brick cistern. Cameras flashed, highlighting the investigator in front of a shadowy background of dappled branches and sinewy limbs. "Look, there they are, in our photos. See the orbs floating just above her shoulder!"
I looked at the camera display. The "orbs" looked suspiciously like what I would expect from light reflecting off dust particles in the air. Springer's is dark and mysterious. There is no doubt about that. And the Point gives almost everyone an uneasy, unsettled feeling, especially after dark. But I suspect that just the sense of the unknown will have that effect.
Actually, "ghosts" I can deal with. I for one couldn't help wondering if one of those big dark snakes I've seen crawl across the path during the day might be slithering close by. It was time to head back home.
Our latest monthly newsletter is Lou Ann's story of commercial clamming with 13 year old Morty. You can read it here.