St. Augustine, the oldest city in the U.S., has had a tumultuous history. With such a colorful past one can expect many legends and tales of ghosts. What I didn’t expect was to be told about these ghosts almost the moment I stepped out of my car, with my camera around my neck.
“Mam, you like to take pictures? You need to go to Old Town and find St. Francis Inn. The garden is beautiful, and some people have even captured ghosts in their pictures.”
“Have you ever seen them?” I asked.
“Not there, but I have a very dark presence in my apartment. I have a spare room that I rent out, and everyone who rents it ends up crazy. I won’t go in there.”
“No, I don’t think I would either. Thank you for the tip.”
Well…I’m always up for an adventure..so that’s exactly what I did, I walked to Old Town. Walking down some of the oldest streets in the country gives you a sense of “place” a sense of “history”. Thinking of the struggles and hardships of living in this harsh land in the 1700’s is almost unfathomable. I finally came upon St. Francis Inn. I didn’t see any ghosts, but what I did see made me smile.
This beautiful cat looked exactly like Smokey. Smokey was my sister’s cat, when we were young. We lived on farm in rural Indiana. We had many pets, but Smokey was a favorite. However, she died a horrible death. She froze to death on a Sunday. We went to church on a snowy, sub-zero morning, and when we came home, we found her lying by the door barely alive, almost completely frozen solid. She must have walked out outside when we did. We tried to warm the life back into her…yea, that didn’t work. But I remember sitting with a blow-dryer in the bathroom in the garage, blowing warm air on her, rubbing her body, and anointing her with our tears of sorrow.
Shawnita, my sister, will be happy to know she came back to live in St. Augustine. 🙂 I do believe Smokey was possessed by the Ghost of Slumber on this day.
What memories…. How fitting to be flooded with memories of my own past while walking these old streets. Old St. Augustine the sacred keeper of human triumphs and sorrows. I suppose there’s bound to be a few restless souls left to linger. You may want to visit the Inn’s website to learn more fascinating tales of ghosts. http://www.stfrancisinn.com/ghosts.html