Monday, July 10, 2017

Daily 2 Cents: Strange Ride by the River -- Vicious Monkeys Roaming Ocala, FL -- Lights Over Lima

Strange Ride by the River

I have a strange memory that has stayed with me for many years. I believe it took place in 1971, near the Missouri river. I didn’t remember it right after it happened. It came to me a few months later.

In this memory, I am sitting in front of the TV and it's a hot summer night. We didn’t have air conditioned and all the windows were open. I was watching TV alone very late, and the house was very quiet. This in itself was strange because my parents did not allow us to watch TV late, even in the summer. It was also next to impossible to be any place in the house without a crowd, because I come from a large family, and the house was always noisy.

I remember having a strong feeling to look outside. I went to the front door and looked out the screen. I saw a large dark vehicle parked outside. It wasn’t right in front of our house, but was closer to an empty house.

I couldn’t see the make of it, it was black, and the windows were too dark to see inside. It looked like a gangster car out of maybe the 1930s. I thought it weird that it was parked on our street, but some of the guys in the neighborhood were into muscle cars, so maybe it wasn’t that weird. It was very quiet outside, and there were no lights at the neighbor's houses. The night air reminded me how it feels right before a thunderstorm.

Suddenly, I’m in the car. But oddly, the light is on inside, and there are a number of people with me. We are sitting on rows of seats, and there is a yellow orange light filling the vehicle. I look around to the faces in the car, but no one is looking back at me. They seem familiar, but not like relatives. The vehicle appeared to have a large number of us inside, maybe 15-20, but the inside is not that big. Suddenly I am aware that the vehicle has been moving, although I couldn’t feel anything at all. Soon I realized we were stopping, and at another house. I remember standing inside as a tall thin figure held the hand of a person in pajamas leading them out of the room. Two people were sitting on a couch watching TV, as I stood there, but they seemed in a daze, totally indifferent to us being there. Then I was in the vehicle again and we were sitting inside very still.

Somehow, I was able to look out the wall of the vehicle, and saw we were moving over a grassy area that was very muddy. It was very dark outside but it smelled like muddy water and it occurred to me that we were near the river. There were no buildings around us, just overgrown areas of trees and grass. I saw some cat tails in some gorges under us. There must have been streams off of the river. At this time of the year you would often be hearing the crickets very loud at night, and see the fireflies all over. But it was dead silent, and I didn’t notice any of the fireflies around. The vehicle was moving, but not rolling like a car, it seemed to be hovering above the ground.

I turned from looking outside to looking back inside, and realized there was a front seat to the vehicle, and there were two people sitting in front. All of a sudden, one turned and looked back at me, and it was a beautiful golden hair child. He couldn't have been more than a a year or two, wearing a diaper. He resembled statues of the baby Jesus I have seen in Church. There was a warm glow about him, and I remember the curls touching his pink rosy cheeks. He was talking to us, and some of the people next to me, seemed to relax and a few sighed. But as I am sitting there, I am thinking something is wrong. Something didn't feel right. The words he was speaking were in my head, but they were bothering me. The sounds bounced around my skull and echoed giving me a headache. For a baby there was something cold and distant about him. I shook my head and looked at the figure speaking. There was a fuzziness in front of him. It was like a television screen in front of him that was losing its signal. I reached out to touch him, and he backed away. As the image flickered in front of me, I saw another figure. It was small and brown, and the head was a weird shape. It had large eyes, wider than long, and ridges around its eyes like over-sized lids. I had a frightened thought that something really terrible was standing in front of me. The face of the baby Jesus stabilized and I felt my body go cold. Baby Jesus looked deeply into my eyes leaned toward me and I broke loose and punched it in the face. I didn’t think about punching it, I seemed to do it instinctively. I think I saw a flash, and then I must have blacked out.

I guess I forgot about it, until a few months later. My family drove down to a riverfront park to celebrate some relative's birthday. I was walking on a path close to the river and could smell the strong smell of the muddy water. I glanced around and saw a bunch of cat tails. Suddenly, I remembered it: The gangster car, the yellow orange light, the people watching TV, the baby Jesus, the strange headed being, and the punch.

I never told anyone about this event. There were so many things about it that are too ridiculous. In 1971, I couldn’t make any sense of it or place it in any category if I tried. I have never considered it a dream, because it was too real. I have other strange memories about the house I grew up in, but many are not as vivid as this one. I recently moved back into the house, and I started thinking about this event again. I don’t really know what to do with the memory. I made some sketches about what I remember.

The baby Jesus figure was like a little glowing angel, with a but there was something very distant about it. The weird being had tan, light brown dry skin. It didn't look like any of the grey aliens I've seen in pictures. When I hit it, it was like hitting a turkey, with dry skin. The black car seemed to dip in the back, and seemed to hug the street when it was parked outside the house.

Thank you for what you do. GU


Lights Over Lima

In the Summer of 1973, I lived in Lima, Peru as an exchange student. I stayed with a family living in a large block full of 3-story apartment buildings. On night after dark, I was visiting neighbors in a second-floor apartment when we heard yelling outside. People were on the ground and hanging out the windows everywhere, pointing up at the sky. We watched a trio of lights, round and bright, slowly move together from above the horizon to the center of the sky straight up, when they suddenly turned 90 deg. and sped away extremely fast. Some people were yelling that it was "the Americans", but most were screaming, "UFO!" - Spanish for UFO. That was when I was 17. I am now 61 and have never forgotten the sighting of what could only be extraterrestrial aircraft. WJD


Vicious Monkeys Roaming Ocala, FL

OCALA, Fla. - An Ocala man said monkeys from Silver Springs State Park have invaded his property.

Brian Pritchard lives four miles away from the park, but over the last few days his game camera has taken hundreds of photos of about 50 rhesus macaques eating from a deer feeder in his backyard.

Silver Springs State Park recently shut down two areas because of an increased monkey presence. A family visiting the state park last week recorded a video of the monkeys aggressively chasing them and showing their teeth.

Pritchard had put out a feeder with a camera to catch photos of deer, but instead, he got monkeys.

The rhesus macaques climb up the stand of the feeder and spin the plate to send out enough corn to feed the whole troop.

“They’re vicious. They’re extreme. I mean, they get extremely nasty,” Pritchard said.

The animals have taken more than 250 pounds of deer food in the last few days.

“Obviously the monkeys have it down pat. They don’t have to wait on it. They climb up the poles and they just sit there and spin it off the plate,” Pritchard said.

Researchers estimate 200 non-native macaques live at the park and said many carry the deadly herpes B virus.

Pritchard is convinced hundreds more of the animals are in the area.

“I was standing there, looking out that window and I caught a glimpse of something,” said Pritchard. “I looked and there were 15 of them that came out and they were everywhere. But they kept looking like they could see or hear me in that shed.”

He and his family plan to move into the home on the property next week, and Pritchard hopes the animals don’t get too comfortable with his children around.

“As long as they don’t bother me or my kids, I’m not going to bother them,” he said.

Pritchard said his friend lives another 20 miles from his property and saw about 30 monkeys looking for food


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