No need to alert the news but I’m weird. With this being said, I went on the, oh, millionth ghost tour I’ve been on this weekend (Okay, so I may have been on this specific ghost tour like 5 times now because it’s a really good one. We are the ghosties 🙂 ). It was my boyfriend’s first ghost tour and it seemed to be a lot of the other people–the non-ghosties–first time as well. So let’s go over a few rules for going on a ghost tour (Especially the Charles Town Ghost Tour).
1) I’m just going to do this one first because it really made me mad this weekend: DO NOT SMOKE! Ann, our tour guide, usually makes a point of asking people not to and makes her husband go away for a little while when he wants to. Normally, there is no problem. We have one girl who goes with us who goes down the street or away when she needs to. However, apparently one guy did not get the message that this rule applied to him as well. You see, there is one area on the tour where occasionally we get a phantom smell–cigar. We have only gotten it once (And trust me we tried everything to debunk including smelling the hoodie I had on to make sure my boyfriend did not wear it to the cigar shop). We were in the area near where this happens when Devin runs up and goes, “Do you smell that?” I didn’t until I moved to where he was and then him, my boyfriend, and I all smelled cigarette. Devin was really excited and about to go ask Ann about it…until my mama pointed out the man in the middle of the crowd lighting up. Then he proceeded to follow me–unintentionally or not–every single time I tried to get away from the smell.
2) Learn basic photography. I am far from a good photographer. All my family is far from it. However, we know the simple rules on how to get a decent photo. First off, I understand that these newbies really want to get pictures inside the buildings. I would kill to get into a few of the stops on the tour (Especially since we went to a house that I would love to buy last night). But do not just stick your camera up against the window and snap a picture. You are just going to get a big mess from the flash reflecting against the glass. Secondly, when someone is standing right in front of you and you do not know them and are trying to take a picture of the house, wait until the person has moved. I don’t know how many times I got in the way of someone’s picture because they couldn’t wait for me to move. Third, just be aware of reflections and imperfections–glares, smudges, shadows–before you start freaking out that you’ve got a good picture.
3) If you don’t want to go or you aren’t willing to be respectful to those of us who do believe and do want to be there, don’t go. It’s much easier (and cheaper) for you to stay home than for me to have to put up with you being annoying. Same goes for if you are going to be scared and keep talking about it. There was this girl (and her boyfriend, maybe brother. I’m not sure. It’s an ongoing debate. My vote is for very weird boyfriend) who kept going, “Oh my God. If I start crying, it’s because I’m scared. Mom, can we go home? I don’t like this.” Seriously? What make it worse is that her mom is really into it. She’s been on the tour I think three times with us and she’s all into going ghost hunting with us.
4) Speaking of going ghost hunting, make friends with the woman who’s got all the cool ghost hunting toys. This was the first time anyone has ever come with them but my mama butted her way into the woman’s friend circle. She is part of a paranormal society so unlike the rest of us, she’s actually been on paranormal investigations (How cool is that?). She pulled out her EMF readers and I think I saw a K2. She is in the process of getting one of those voice box things that Zak has on Ghost Adventures has, which I think is one of the coolest tools they have. She told my daddy that they wanted to get a thermal imager like TAPS until they realized how much they cost (Yeah, we thought the same thing until we did a quick Amazon search).We decided to go back to our favorite place after the tour was over and do a little investigating with her toys. The scared girl’s group came with us (because her mom is awesome about it as opposed to her) so there was about 10 of us, which now that I think of it, is really big for an investigation group but since it was outside, it doesn’t really matter. My mama and I got to play with an EMF while everyone else played with her other one. We were walking up and down the railroad tracks asking if William Bailey—a guy who died there—was there (Yeah, Mama, I don’t think he’s going to answer no if he’s not there). It was really fun until we kept getting no flashing lights and their meter was going nuts. Turns out our batteries were dead and hers was getting some interference from the electric box. We did get one answer that he was there without interference but he didn’t want to play (I really don’t blame him when you look at our ragtag group).
5) Making friends is a good thing, right (Okay, that’s debatable if you are me)? Well, here’s another friend you need to make on ghost tours: your tour guide. We love Ann. She’s a Facebook friend and has become a legitimate friend as opposed to just a tour guide (Seriously, my mama and her talk all the time). Why should you be friends with your tour guide—especially if you are going to be regular ghosties like us? Because, to quote Dean (and I may not get the exact quote but it’s the gist), the job may suck but it comes with its perks (Sadly, ours does not involve his gun…or him but we’re both ghost hunting). We find out about the tours and basically have our spots saved before everyone else. We get to find out that there will be new spots and stories. Best of all, she’s invited us to go on a free hunt with her because she is researching for her new book and needs some stories (We may be buying an EMF reader and taking our digital recorder because we are super lame like that).
Ghost tours are one of our favorite things to do as a family thing (Okay, my mama, my daddy, Devin, and my boyfriend might be making up a weird little family but you get the point). It’s so bad that we go on them in the Outer Banks on vacation (It’s not that weird. I mean it was the lost colony and all). And thanks to my great expertise in this field (Okay, my years and years of watching every Ghost Hunters, Ghost Adventures, and just about every other ghost show episode—including Destination Truth since Josh Gates is super cute) I think my rules need to become universal. It’s just a matter of common sense and courtesy but we all know that people tend not to have either of those very often.