Short Stories

Southern Hospitality

Darla and I had the privilege of headin’ down to Charleston, South Carolina, for our thirty-fourth weddin’ anniversary with a couple of friends. The excursion was a must-needed respite from the daily grind of the covid lockdowns. It had the added benefit of givin’ me even more tales to tell y’all from our adventures.

Our first encounter occurred the night of our arrival. Three of us decided to go on a ghost huntin’ tour at the old prison. I have to be right honest; I’m not sure we even needed to pay the admission price to find a few wayward spirits of one type or another. It appears a warm Friday night is when the young folks venture out and haunt the city with a belly full of different spirits they pick up at the local pubs.

However, we paid for our tickets, so we headed on into the building. In my humble opinion, our guide was a rather creepy fella we’ll call Fred. He also seemed to have a lot to say. Fred began the tour by reminding us that we would be more likely to hear something supernatural if we were quiet. That’s a true statement. Unfortunately, I don’t think this fella took a single breath for the entire thirty minutes we were zippin’ through there.

He seemed to have a relatively deep attachment to the old prison, or rather the dead folks that used to live there. In fact, he was downright defensive about the old prisoners and had nothin’ good to say about the townsfolk, past or present.

I understand his concern about the conditions back in those days. Evidently, they didn’t have toilets, not even outhouses. There were too few buckets for too many prisoners. I reckon those cells must have been as nasty as a restroom at a roadside gas station.

Despite the less-than-ideal noisy conditions, I did manage to see what’s called a shadow person. Usually, I would chalk it up to boredom, bein’ tired from the afternoon drive, or hunger. However, another woman in our group saw it as well. We didn’t get any pictures on account of it bein’ dark and our guide not takin’ a breath so we could step into the room for a closer look.

The fella givin’ the tour did say there was a figure who liked to climb the walls. I reckon that’s on account of this guy’s verbosity. Bless his heart.

I mean no ill will towards the gentleman who shared his knowledge with us. I learned a lot about old southern prisons and was thankful not to have been around moonshinin’ at that point in history. He mentioned a more extended tour where you can go in with fewer folks and sit and gather evidence of the unfortunate residents who don’t realize they should leave the prison.

I’m thinkin’ next time Darla and I go, we’ll look into that. It may sound like a creepy way to spend an evenin’, but honestly, it’s relaxin’. The Lord made all things seen and unseen. Sometimes it’s good to stop, look around, and realize the miracle of creation.

Y’all be good.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.