After returning to work from spell of illness and injuries I noticed my friend Erma wasn’t sitting in the common area like she has every day for the last 5 years. Her name wasn’t really Erma, I just called her that by accident one day after mixing her name up with Herman. She was hard to get to know. She was like myself, not talkative but aware. Occasionally I would sit in the chair next to her and watch the world go by. She knew everyone’s routine, when they left, when they came back on what days they had appointments, who’s cab was who’s, etc. I even found myself asking her if she’d seen someone I was looking for. That was the extent of our conversations for a few years. Her facial expression never changed I noticed. Slowly we began to talk and she started opening up to me. Not a lot just basic things like her daughter and sister. One day I said something about myself, I did something foolish and she laughed. That was the funniest laugh I ever heard and one I felt I worked too hard to get. From then on I tried to make her laugh every day. It didn’t always work but it was worth the effort. The chairs we sat in were sliders, I didn’t like them because my phone would go under the wooden armrest and I’d get stuck in the chair. She got a kick out of that. Erma would slightly go back and forth and I would grab the back of the chair to stop it, her body moved forward but the chair didn’t. Once in a while she’d laugh at that, or I would bump her chair with a cart. Other times I would walk at her and hold something like I was about to hand it to her then pull it away and say, “SIKE”. This earned me the name “Joker”. Not “The Joker” or “A Joker”, just Joker like in Batman. And that was my name to her from then on. Then around last Christmas she was dressed in her winter coat. She sat there for several hours and when I finally had a chance I asked if she was cold and if I should turn the heat up. She said she missed her cab because she couldn’t stand up. I noticed she only had one arm in her coat also. Every morning I made it a point to see if she had her coat. I would linger around the common area and if a cab pulled up I’d ask if it was for her. I started helping her up and putting her coat on then walking her out the security doors where the cab drivers usually took over.
My last illness was pneumonia, which I thought was a cold (and it was too late to mention in my other post). When I returned to work Erma wasn’t sitting in her spot. Twice the first week I was back I saw her going into her room and the door shutting. After I thought about it, it wasn’t really her but the colors of her, like her white tennis shoes, blue pants and maroon walker. It wasn’t like her to stay in her room so I asked the busy bodies, who do nothing but squawk BS all day every day, if they said something to her. They said she had died the week before from pneumonia in the hospital. After working with the family to remove her belongings we started get her unit ready to put on the market. The painters came in, the maintenance was done and the cleaners did their job. I did a final walk through just to check on things. I found this card in the back of the kitchen drawer. R.I.P Erma.
I started posting about clicks and sounds recorded inside my wall HERE. The 8 hour recording was tedious to get through and I never finished listening to the entire thing. On occasion I’ll read or watch video’s about the familiar things I’ve experienced. Most I see as bullshit, something like 99.9% are crap but once in a while I’ll come across a story that’s exactly the way it happens. A link from Reddit about a lady who recorded the exact same sounds in 2014 that I recorded in 2016. She used an android app and I used a Digital Recorder. I’m not sure where she lives, her Reddit posts seem like she’s an American but our recordings, minus the voices she caught, sound exactly identical. Her post on Reddit is found HERE. Also listen to our recording posted on Soundcloud, the links are in both of our stories.
So far it’s been a year from hell. I had the flu first. I was too sick to go to the doctors so it ran it’s course. Three weeks in bed. If I ate anything it wanted back out. When I started feeling better food was the one thing on my mind. I’m not sure what I ate but it wasn’t good. Food poisoning was my second illness, again I was too sick to see a doctor until I was feeling better and by then there wasn’t anything they could do but let it run it’s course. The third wasn’t an illness. The dentist was trying to pull a tooth that had a previous root canal performed years ago. It wasn’t coming out easy and resulted in a hairline fracture of my lower jaw. Once again I’m bed ridden and in pain this time. Just touching my teeth together felt like being hit with a baseball bat. Two weeks of pain meds and antibiotics with more time in bed. Next I hurt my back. I try to help the elderly where I work as much as I can only this time I went too far. Now it’s muscle relaxers, pain meds and more bed rest. And just last week I caught a cold. It’s not as bad as the rest but I’m worn out from the previous issues.
While I spent so much time in bed I was being checked on. Sounds would wake me up or just the feeling someone was near. I even felt Stinky, my old cat kneading my legs like he use to. My mind wasn’t there most of the time so these things seemed like normality. Nothing out of the ordinary. A few times I woke up to see a little shadow figure at the bedroom door. I kept the door closed to keep the room warm so the hall light would fill the bedroom when the door opened. The door would close darkening the room, that’s when I could hear the sounds of someone in the back bedroom. The bedroom where “the closet” is. But these were every day sounds I would make back there, the ruler sliding on the drawing table, pens rolling, tapping of a pencil. Other times I could feel them beside the bed. It was like a mother checking in on a sick child. I felt comfort with this. At one time the usb charging cable fell off the table. I know this sound because it hits the drawer knob making a distinct “ping”. My phone is also my clock, if it unplugs the clock screen shuts off which it did after a while. The next time I woke up the clock was on and the cable plugged in. I found a lot of small things like this. The bathroom would be tidied up, the towels and trash. If I blew my nose and missed the trash the tissue would be in the trash my next visit. Lots of little things like this. And my water. At first it had Gatorade in the container and I just filled it with water after that but it never emptied no matter how often I took drinks from it. I’m sure if I sat here long enough I could remember more.
Now that I’m back into my daily routine and I can sit downstairs, they are still upstairs. I can hear the floor squeaks in the back bedroom, the top step landing that makes a snapping sound and just general walking around type movement. Sometimes I appreciate being chosen.
I don’t know what it is about cards lately. Here’s one that showed up in the area I’m working in. The other morning I found it laying inside the vacant area roped off from the rest of the building. Anyone can get in there but why drop a card there. This was a strange card, too. From the time I saw it felt like there was nothing good about it. This is a small card so I put a door key beside it for scale. A banana would have been too big. Even taking a picture of it I thought just having this on my phone was a bad omen. I didn’t even bring it home, I just left it. The card site I refer to says a 9 of diamonds means there will be a loss of money. But it also says there will be a completion of something and something about the past. This is a very confusing card to have found at this time because of all the personal things going on. I didn’t even want to write about it because I would be acknowledging any association with it. This happened on Monday, two days ago. So far I’m not aware of anything changing.
I’ve been really sick the past few months and felt good enough a few days ago to get outside even though it was only 41 degrees. I like the cold air, I like winter. It rained last night so there was a lot of mud. Wondering off the trail I could see a card in the tall grass that was bent over from the rain. Laughing inside about a card way out here would be a good post for my blog but I kept walking. A few feet ahead were two other cards that appeared to be placed in the tall grass like a fan, like it was displayed. On the muddy trail there weren’t any foot prints except mine which lead to the second noticeable oddity of the cards. They were dry but slightly weathered and sitting in the wet tall grass. I couldn’t get a picture because my I broke the camera lens on my phone and it was covered with blue masking tape. Yeah, it looked ghetto so I ordered a new phone. I went back and picked up the first number 7 card I walked past. All three were dry and I was 99% certain it was two 7’s and a 2. When I got home I pulled out two 7’s and a Queen from my coat pocket. I know it was a 2 of hearts or diamonds when I picked it up.
The backs look like this:
~ 7 of Diamonds
~ 7 of Clubs
~ Queen of Clubs
I thought I had posted this before but couldn’t find it in my history. I’ve always had this vision of a man, helpless or dying in a field. He can hear the traffic going by and voices from the buildings across the street. He might have been beaten and dump there. No one can hear him yelling for help. I picture him in a white wool suit. This was around the late 1940’s maybe early 50’s. While I was on Facebook I joined the Columbus, Ohio history group. A photo they posted is exactly the vision I’ve seen with this man. The color of the sky, the cars, everything is exact. The red X is where this man laid only he’s hidden by tall grass and weeds as seen on the other side of the road.
Today was fairly nice out. That’s if you think 60 degrees in February is nice in Ohio. At work I pick up pastries and bread from Giant Eagle to give out to the residents. It makes a big mess in my vehicle which I like to keep clean. Today was clean out day. I keep a backpack with a change of cloths, phone charger, tooth brush, warm cloths, etc. just in case. When I unzipped it I saw the 3 year old deodorant stick was just a bone. I brought it in to refresh my supplies. This backpack sits on the floor behind the passenger seat, it hasn’t been touched in at least three years, maybe four. I pulled everything out and at the bottom I find a Quarter. It’s been there a while, it left an imprint.