Do You Believe in Ghosts?

I’ll begin with my own answer to the title question which is, most certainly, no. That is – until 4 days ago, and in the spirit of Halloween I decided to share my experience with you. I typically snicker at reality shows depicting ghost sightings and claiming that strange noises are potentially part of the paranormal. But, after my recent stay at The Brookstown Inn in Winston-Salem, NC, I am seriously questioning myself. I’ll let you be the judge.


(Img Credit: Southern Living)

After a long day walking the High Point Furniture Market, I was relieved to check into a charming room at the Brookstown Inn. It reminded me of the bedrooms in my grandmother’s house. An old quilt covered the bed, a dated television sat in an old armoire and there was a lace doily on the small desk in front of the window. I slipped into bed around 11pm and, after flipping through the few available channels, turned off the TV and fell asleep almost instantly. Around 5:15am, I woke to the sound of creaking wood. At first, I thought it was someone walking upstairs but the sound seemed to stay in a confined area right above my bed.

Annoyed, I tried to fall back asleep as the sound grew more intense. After ten unsuccessful minutes of “ignoring” the strange sound, I began to hear children giggling and playing. If I had to guess, it sounded like a few five or six year olds. Where were the adults in this room? Who would leave children in a hotel unsupervised? I waited for heavy footsteps or the deep sound of a mature voice but…nothing.

After thirty minutes of the children laughing, stomping and roughhousing, I wrestled with the notion of contacting the front desk to complain. Let me preface this by saying that I have three children of my own. I’ve been the parent with the crying baby on the airplane and the cranky kids at the grocery store. Normally, I would write this off to kids being kids but this was driving me bananas!

I reluctantly turned on the lights, dialed the front desk and relayed my story to Vickie’s pleasant voice on the other end of the line. After a long pause, Vickie politely told me that there was only a single gentleman staying above my room. In fact, there were only three occupied rooms on the entire fourth floor. (I was on the third.) I suggested that the noises might be coming from next door and, again, Vickie derailed my theory. There was just a single woman in the room next to me. Being market week, the hotel was primarily occupied with business owners and buyers like myself. Could the sounds be coming from the hallway?

Vickie offered to send security to the fourth floor to investigate. I thanked her and apologized before hanging up. I was already feeling guilty for complaining about children just having some fun. So, when I walked past the front desk several hours later, I stopped to thank Vickie and to do a little detective work. The current desk clerk, Angela, said that Vickie had gotten off at 7am. I felt compelled to tell my strange tale, yet again, to Angela.

When I got to the part about the giggling children, Angela’s face turned bright red. She clearly knew what I was talking about and had heard this story before. It was also evident that she was uncomfortable speaking about it in front of the other guests standing nearby. After what seemed like an eternity, I insisted she come clean. She was definitely holding something back.

Although she hadn’t heard the noises from her room across the hall, my friend almost jumped over the desk while attempting to get Angela to admit that the hotel was haunted. My friend absolutely nailed the landing on the “spill it or else” stare. Finally, although Angela technically wouldn’t admit that the hotel was “haunted” (and she’d never heard the giggling children herself), she did confess that many guests had described hearing the same sounds. And, on each of the reported occasions, there hadn’t been any children staying in the hotel.

So, back to the question at hand, do I believe in ghosts? Let’s just say that I’m not laughing anymore (but someone on the fourth floor of that hotel certainly is).

6 thoughts on “Do You Believe in Ghosts?”

  1. Staying in rm 402 this evening. Already have a very good evp when I mention the room is stuffy heard, “I’d say it is”, in a somewhat english voice of a younger man. Sure more to follow.

    Regards,
    Joe

  2. I stayed at Brookstown Inn for two nights on a business trip last week. Both nights I heard what sounded like faint machinery noises, clanking, whirring… like machines running. And also murmuring voices that I couldn’t make out what was being said. I was spooked, took a couple of Benedril and read a book until my eyes crossed and I was ready to pass out. Pillow over the head and I finally got to sleep. I had the option of staying a third night, but no thanks, I elected to go on home. Upon checkout, I was told the place used to be an old cotton mill. No doubt, in the conditions of the day, there could have been several accidents that claimed some lives over the years. I most likely heard some residual paranormal activity.

  3. I’m a designer and I just got back from the spring High Point market.
    I stayed at the Brookstown Inn in room 401. I didn’t know about the ghost stories until after checking in to the Inn. I certainly didn’t know about room 401 until after returning home. I’m very curious to know what room was over yours when you stayed at the Inn? It was a very interesting stay. Not sure if I can ever go back. It’s hard for me to believe I just spent 3 nights alone in room 401, where recorded paranormal activity has taken place.

  4. Next time go to the room at the top of the hotel! They don’t advertise that room but it’s CREEPY! We only saw it because my daughter talked the nice desk clerk into letting us see it. Think 5th floor. We were in the courtyard one night and my little 4 year old cousin was over by the rocking chairs, he looked at this one area and said “little kids used to play here a long time ago, don’t you see them?”, then started talking about the things the kids used to do. THEN another little girl whom we had never seen before came up to the same spot and said the same thing!! These two kids had never met!! Areas of the hotel seem colder than other areas and the paintings of the kids look like they are
    following you! Love this hotel but it does give me the chills!

  5. In room 401, when you walk in, are there two double beds on the right side with large reproductions of a little girl in one and a boy over the other?? The room we saw you had to take a special staircase, no elevator went up there. Very low ceiling. Only room on that floor. We spent a total of 8 nights in that hotel (3 in June, 5 in August) when my daughter was dancing with North Carolina School of the Arts (ballet).

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