; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Monday, July 21, 2014

Daily 2 Cents: Cricket Team Scared of Haunted Hotel -- Man Woke Up On Fire -- Crop Circle Baffles Villagers

England Cricket Team scared of sleeping in their haunted hotel

Witches and ghosts were not mere stage accessories in the Elizabethan plays, rather they defined the outcomes. As India play England in a five-match Test series, a bizarre development is taking place, with several England cricketers having requested a change of rooms, saying their five-star London hotel is haunted. Interestingly, this hotel was patronized by some literary giants.

According to Daily Mail on Sunday, the players' wives and girlfriends have refused to stay at the famous Langham Hotel during London Test matches this summer after complaints of mysterious goings-on at night.

"During the Sri Lanka Test I had to move rooms," Stuart Broad was quoted as saying by the British daily.

"It was so hot in the room I just couldn't sleep. All of a sudden the taps in the bathroom came on for no reason. I turned the lights on and the taps turned themselves off. Then when I turned the lights off again the taps came on. It was very weird.

"It really freaked me out. I ended up asking to move rooms. Bealey (Broad's girlfriend) was pretty spooked, too, and I know Moeen Ali's other half won't stay there because she's so frightened of the ghosts," the fast bowler added.

"I've slept okay during the current Test (against India) but the Sri Lanka Test (last month) was not great," added Broad. "One night I woke up in the middle of the night, around 1.30 a.m. and I was convinced there was a presence in the room. It was the weirdest feeling.

"Ben Stokes has had some problems sleeping as well. He's on the third floor, which is where a lot of the issues are. I'm telling you, something weird is going on," said the Englishman.

London's Langham Hotel that opened in 1865 is on the list of one of the most haunted hotels in the world and has been patronised by several literary greats, including Mark Twain, Oscar Wilde and Arthur Conan Doyle, IANS has added.

Reportedly, Room 333 is believed to be the most haunted with the hotel's own website stating: "In 1973 a BBC radio announcer James Alexander-Gordon awoke suddenly in the night to see a fluorescent ball which slowly took on the shape of a man wearing Victorian evening wear. The announcer asked the ghost what it wanted and it began to float towards him, with its legs cut off some two feet below the ground, arms outstretched, eyes staring emptily. At this point the announcer got up and fled."

Earlier, Australia all-rounder Shane Watson had to share a room with team-mate Brett Lee in 2005, because he was "scared of ghostly goings on at Lumley Castle Hotel near Durham". - India Today


Man in court for for torching goblins' house

A self-styled sangoma from Chief Nyajena area in Masvingo, Zimbabwe yesterday appeared in court for allegedly setting his uncle's house on fire because it had goblins.

Mike Musiiwa of Mutadzo Village pleaded guilty to arson before Masvingo provincial magistrate Sibonginkosi Mkandla.

He was remanded in custody to today for sentence.

Musiiwa took advantage of his uncle, Alick Malendele's absence to torch the house resulting in the destruction of property worth about $1,000. He was spotted torching the thatched house by a fellow villager, Marita Raisi who rushed to alert Malendele.

A report was made at Renco police leading to Musiiwa's arrest and his subsequent appearance in court. Magistrate Mkandla said Musiiwa had no right to torch his uncle's house.

In his defence, Musiiwa said he set the house on fire because he had proved that his uncle was bewitching him using his goblins.

"I am a sangoma who has helped a number of people by exorcising evil spirits and destroying witches' goblins. I went into a mountain and started counting stones, which are the tools I use in carrying my duties. One of the stones helped me identify my tormentor. My uncle had been attempting to cast a bad spell on me and other family members using goblins that I later destroyed when I set his house on fire. I knew that there was no one in the house who could be harmed.

"I just wanted to destroy his goblins, which I did," said Musiiwa showing no signs of remorse. - Bulawayo24


Man woke up on fire

Edmonton, Alberta police are baffled after a man claimed he woke up on fire Saturday morning.

Witnesses are telling city cops that the young man, believed to be around 20 years old, spontaneously combusted.

“The complainant isn’t saying anything, not co-operating with us,” said acting Staff Sgt. Mike Wynnyk. “The witnesses aren’t giving us any information other than they saw his back on fire. That’s it. They’re all thinking it was spontaneous human combustion.”

The call came in to police around 8 a.m. Saturday from the area of 75 Street and 12 Avenue NW.

Police are trying to get more information out of the victim, who is in hospital recovering from second-degree burns.

Wynnyk is skeptical of the combustion claim.

“We’re persistent. We don’t want to give up with just that. We’re going to keep trying to prod him and talk to him and persuade him to give us more,” Wynnyk said.

“Right now it’s really up in the air. We’re as confused as everybody else is on it.”

Wynnyk hopes witnesses at the residence – believed to be family members – come forward with more information while detectives continue to investigate. - EdmontonSun


Crop Circle Baffles Villagers in Southern Russia

The appearance of a mysterious crop circle in a southern Russian village has lead some residents to conclude aliens must have paid them a visit.

The unusual marking, about 40 meters in diameter, appeared in a sunflower field on a farm in the Krasnodar region last Thursday, local news site Svet Mayakov reported.

A video uploaded Sunday to the popular Russian social network Vkontakte shows the inside of the crop formation, which consists of a series of squares and rectangles joined together in a seemingly random pattern.

It was not immediately clear what caused the marking, though one resident told Channel Nine television that villagers had seen an unidentified object rising from the field, omitting a beam of light five meters in diameter.

A video camera located on the farm did not pick up any unusual activity, and no one was seen entering the field when the marking is believed to have appeared, news site Svet Mayakov reported.

The Krasnodar region is no stranger to crop circles and accounts for 40 percent of all of those recorded in Russia. A group of amateur enthusiasts convened in the area just last month to collect evidence of the unusual phenomenon.

But there are some who doubt the supernatural aspect of the markings.

"Firstly, I saw a whole swarm of insects and lizards in the fields," alien-hunter Sergei Frolov told the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper.

"Secondly, the plants themselves are broken and scattered in different directions, and in real crop circles they bend at the same angle. Furthermore, there are traces of human footprints in several places in the field." - The Moscow Times


New Jersey lake serpent identified as green anaconda

The Lake Hopatcong boa constrictor who has been reportedly seen in the Capp Cove section of the lake during the past two weeks is a green anaconda - the world's largest snake - according to the expert who saw it.

"It's a green anaconda. I have 20-plus years of experience, I know one when I see one," said Gerald Andrejcak, a reptile specialist who works for Common Sense for Animals nonprofit in Warren County. "I saw the head, the spot pattern, the coloration. I saw the snake."

Andrejcak said he was coming back from searching Halsey Island Thursday, scanning the bank when he passed a boat house and saw something out of the corner of his eye.

"I got closer and I saw a head laying on a vegetation bed," Andrejcak said. "There was about two feet of the body sitting on a kelp bed, probably getting air."

As Andrejcak approached the boat house, about eight to ten "spectator boats" produced waves that knocked his boat into the boat house door.

"The snake looked over, and I jumped out of my boat to grab it, but it went underwater," Andrejcak said. "I was feeling around with my feet for it and I felt it swim right between my legs."

Andrejcak admits feeling around for a boa constrictor is potentially very dangerous.

"But I know what I'm doing," he said. "I know all the variants. Better me than someone who doesn't know what to do."

As of now, Andrejcak said the snake is not aggressive, because it swam through his legs instead of grabbing him.

By looking at the head size, Andrejcak estimated the snake is 14 to 16 feet in length.

Andrejcak said he's been following the story since initial reports and even before he saw it, the locations where it was seen indicated to him it was likely an anaconda.

When Andrejcak told Jefferson Township Animal Control his thoughts, he was asked to simply say it was a boa constrictor to not cause a panic in the community.

An anaconda is a member of the boa constrictor family.

"I was asked not to release that," Andrejcak said. "I understand why they asked that. I'm not saying I agreed with it."

Calls to animal control this week have not been returned.

Andrejcak is now going public because the homeowner of the boat house where the snake was found was worried for his family's safety.

"When he found out I didn't catch it he was distraught," Andrejcak said. "He has young kids he's worried about."

Andrejcak said it was the homeowner's decision to release the fact that the snake was an anaconda, and he did so in order to draw a larger response to the situation.

Now that the word is out that the snake is an anaconda, Andrejcak expects even more attention, which may force it to move from its current location.

"If you put a lot of boats in the area, it's going to want to go somewhere quieter," Andrejcak said, adding he is hopeful the matter can be resolved without the snake dying. "I don't want to see it get hurt, but I also don't want to see any people get hurt."

While Andrejcak has a plan to catch the snake, he admits catching an anaconda rarely goes as planned.

"There is no simple way to attack it, but ultimately I'd like to catch the head, support the midriff, get it on land and take it to a sanctuary," Andrejcak said. "But the chances of that happening are slim to none. I'll probably end up dragging it out by its tail and get a good bite. That's why I caution people to stay away if you see it."

Andrejcak said he believes an owner released the snake, and he hopes that person is found and changes are filed. - DailyRecord



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