Saturday, June 20, 2020

Odd Encounters in the new century's first decade

Unique and near unique incidents --- the researcher's nightmare but still fun.

An array like that just makes me want to run a finger up and down across my lips and go "BUBBUBBBUUBBUBBUBB" for a while. The Zebra-Centaur doesn't even allow me to claim that everybody is a quadrapedal humanoid. But just because we like to meddle in the Twilight Zone, and gobble up novelty whether it's good for us or not, ready or not, here they are:

The Fairy Census cases first:

OXFORDSHIRE (Fairy Census Case #110)

Several people were camping in a place called Bluebell Woods.  Looking towards a veritable sea of bluebells, first one person (the census reporter) then two other campers saw a large numbers of small blue orbs rising from that field. This was just before dawn and the darkness allowed the little lights to stand out.

The witness felt an unusual silence (like the OZ effect) and a sudden chill. The lights, maybe up to a hundred count, danced around making beautiful patterns in the air. This display took place 75 feet away. Several minutes into this event, the group of lights came together and coalesced into a roughly humanoid form. The form seemed to turn its head towards them, and flew away over the flower field. Are Lightballs part of faery? Obviously some census reporters think that they are. Are Lightballs "intelligent?" Some researchers of lightfields (like Hessdalen, Marfa, or Yakima) think so. Once in a rare while I've come across a case reporting a set of BOLs which seem to gel into something beyond just their individual selves. Key to the Mystery?

 DERBYSHIRE (Fairy Census Case #32)

Four adults in their 40s or so were walking in the woods. It was nighttime but some light remained. There, only ten feet away, was a shadowy bent figure, apparently cloaked in black with a hood. The figure stood only two foot tall. (This is unusual for such "awesome" black cloaked figure cases, as they are typically normal to tall in height.) 

They, even with four persons, didn't want to confront this thing, and walked past. The entity however did not go on, but followed them, just as a stalker might. This began completely  freaking the witnesses out. For five minutes this stalking continued, but nothing further. Upon reaching their hostel in the camping area, the thing was now gone. This case badly needs something a bit more unusual to eliminate the hypothesis of a child in a costume cloak. Just the feeling of menace isn't enough. 

 CORNWALL (Fairy Census Case #22)

The witnesses here were a husband and wife who were doing the very pleasant thing of hiking in Cornwall seeing the famous megalithic sites. They had parked their car and visited the Men-an Tol and were passing the Men Scryfa heading towards Nine Maidens Circle (in good weather this is a wonderful thing to do, and I recommend it to all you younger healthier folks out there.) 

Down a slight hill came a running "man." He was normal sized but hardly running at normal pace: the land was flying beneath his feet. He had shoulder length hair of metallic fools-gold color, a long sleeved loose shirt and olive colored trousers. At about twenty meters, he stopped waved and smiled, then took off again in accelerated pace. 

The witnesses were a bit spooked about this and went on to the Circle. The weather changed to foggy mist with a purplish tint, and they joked about "going through a portal, and hoping the car was still there when they got back." After a few minutes in the Circle they stepped out and the fog broke and the Sun shown again. (MAYBE this is odd, maybe not. Folks familiar with Cornwall will know that singular little clouds can just suddenly show up, dump their contents on you out of a clear sky, and go on their way. This exact thing happened to me at Boscawen-un Circle.) 

The good fun of the experience was capped off when they came back to the Men-an Tol to find a pagan ritual in process which they respectfully watched for a while. Their car, by the way, was just as they left it, and they laughed. The witnesses say the following:

"We think that this fellow was an elf. One of the Fair Folk that live in the parallel worlds  to our own. He was too solid to be a ghost, and there were no signs that it might have been aliens." {I agree on both counts, but for different reasons} The witnesses said that they felt they were very lucky to have seen such a thing.Yep. Wish I had when I was there. Charles de Lint also thinks that this is a good place to meet the Little People :=} 

LANCASHIRE. (Fairy Census Case #70)

The witness was a woman in her twenties who was hiking with a friend (who however did not see the entity involved.) The area was a favored one with a hill and an old oak with a spring popping up nearby. Just as they got to the oak, the environment got very quiet. There away down that hill a bit, the witness saw a woman. 

She got the feeling that she should go to her, and ran down the path to her vicinity. The woman was tall and thin not looking exactly human. She had an aura which shown around her. She had long brunette hair and a dull white long tunic. When the witness approached (distance not stated), the lady spoke. (the content of this exchange also was not mentioned other than the witness saying that whenever she visited this spot she would leave an offering of bread and cider.) The aura-surrounded lady spoke as well but her voice seemed "sliding in and out of reality" as if the entity was not fully present. The lady suddenly vanished. The witness realized that she was standing in an unfamiliar clearing consisting of birch trees, three of which formed a conspicuous triangle. The lady had stood precisely in the middle of the triangle, and the witness felt that she was particularly connected to the trees. Though some of this can be readily waved off as witness search-for-significance, the incident CAN without much stretch be viewed as an entity standing in a window portal. 

N.E. ENGLAND (Durham). (Fairy Census Case #97) 

The witness was a male in his 40s, carrying his camera in the hopes of taking pictures of beautiful things in the woods. He had gotten up pre-dawn and was "crashing around" in the slightly lightening environment hoping to stumble into a clearing and settle in. This was a bit of an adventure in itself, as the sudden flight of a pheasant almost underfoot sent him onto his backside. While down, and getting his act back together, he saw a light back among the trees. At this point there was a silence and a chill. (OZ again)

He decided to remain down and attempt to quietly crawl over to see what this could possibly be. What he discovered he considered to be a creature of some kind, even though it had its back to him and never turned. "It was like a person but stretched upwards, overly thin and tall, and with its head coming to a slightly corkscrewed point with some smaller branching points coming from it." It was colored mottled brown and wreathed in a greenish mist. It slowly began to move and then "disappeared a little too quickly amongst the trees." 

I had a hard time visualizing this form. The more I considered it, the more it seemed like another of these tallish tree-man/Ent reports seen from the rear and surrounded by the dim pre-morning light. 

SOMERSET (Fairy Census #116) 

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The witness was a woman in her 50s. Near her neighborhood was a dense wood area composed of old trees from what once was an orchard with trees of many types. She liked to go there and spend some nature time. This particular day she noticed that one of the very old Oak trees had lost a huge branch, almost as big as the trunk itself. 

Clinging to this trunk was the creature. It was human-sized with a vague face. It had webbed hands and feet, and a blue skin which looked damp with shine. It seemed more startled than she was. She and her husband believed in nature spirits and he had felt that he had recently seen a traditional Old Green Man entity. She felt that the blue thing was most similar to the Gollum character in the movie version of The Lord of the Rings. She also felt that they were communicating in a way. She asked the thing: "Shouldn't you be green?" The thing said "No. Blue." She felt that the entity was very uncomfortable, and decided to move away. Later she read a story about a boy who had seen a similar creature and who thought that it was a Nature Spirit associated with living trees. She wondered if she had seen the same sort of thing, but emotionally depressed because of the loss of the Oak tree's huge limb. 

 A "NO LOCATION" Case from About

It boggles my mind that a person can write 3+ paragraphs about a personal experience and not even hint at basic parameters like location. But .... this case sounds like a UK case (2001) where the witness is a male probably of high school age. The experience took place inside his home. 

The fellow had been awakened by his father and was sitting on his bed ready to get moving. There standing in the doorway (his dad had just left the house) was a creature 3 foot tall and colored shadow-black. It was three-dimensional and had clawed hands and feet. It seemed muscular and had ears or horns. It stared at him and slowly turned and walked away into the house. The witness grabbed his cricket bat and went searching the house for it. In the direction that it went, there was no way to exit, but he could never find a trace. 

I consider the case weak, but include it because it is "different" and had a witness drawing for a change. 

HARTFORD,MD (About case, year 2000) 

The witness is an apparently young man who saw this thing from an automobile early in the morning (5am) so that the road was empty. The entity came up out of the median area of the highway as if it was ascending from somewhere below. It passed a roadsign there and its head was higher than the sign. Thw witness suggested that the creature must have been seven to eight foot tall. 

It stepped into the driver's path and caused him to ram on the brakes and barely stop in time, skidding off the road. The boggart (my term) had a flat face with dark curly hair, beady eyes "like a hamster", no nose, and a large mouth full of pointed smiling teeth. It was dressed all in brown (pants and shirt, like work clothes.) It had black boots. The thing stared briefly, turned its head and vanished. (Thankfully, as far as I would have been concerned.) 

What was experienced? I haven't a clue.

MARU, NIGERIA (2003) and earlier (I am at a loss for good provenance here as the source only says "UFO Round-up." The narrative sounds like a newspaper report.)

The narrative here says that in 2003 there were sightings of a centaur-like creature with a zebra body and a human torso and head. The human part had close-cut hair, horse-like ears, and a goatee. Several persons were said to have seen this thing (or things). 

The behavior of the creature is said to involve harassing people by chasing them around, which due to what the thing looks like causes the public to stay inside out of fear. The local government became concerned that the thing was ruining the economy. 

I included this one mainly "just because." It's "funner" than most as kids would say. I'd wish for some kind of substantial report though. 

PROSPECT, CT (2003) (a report from a UFO reporting site.) 

The witness was an adult male driving home after work at 10:30 in the evening. There was no other traffic as he approached a small lake. Up ahead something was walking on the roadside. He upped his lights to see, and there was a creature about six foot tall, and of gray color. 

The creature turned and stood in the middle of the road. It had long (one foot) pointed ears, dark black eyes, and despite the cold, no "breath" exiting its small mouth (which was bordered above by a "red silver strip." No nose. It walked on two legs, with a waddling gait "like a monkey." It had two arms which it waved about continuously. 

The witness was naturally alarmed and went past the entity quickly turning his head only briefly as he hurried off. 

No news as to how it disappeared from view other than distance. 

That's our strange Ten for today. All of these can be considered unique. Almost all of them could be tossed into the convenient all-inclusive "Boggart Basket." Most of these can be considered "walks in the woods", which is perhaps the only familiar feeling thing about them. The OZ Effect shows up now and then. The last two cases are like cases that one comes across a fair bit in the casual literature --- odd creatures stepping out in front of cars or running at people in cars, sometimes even being run-over by them. But ... what does any of it mean?


  1. Hi Prof Swords

    A recent issue of the Fortean Times (FT393, June 2020) features a forum piece by earth mysteries author Paul Devereux (‘Little Green Man’, p55) describing his encounter with a ‘nature spirit’ that sounds similar to some of the cases you are relating in your recent posts, especially those you refer to as ‘tree/ent’ entities. If you aren't familiar with the case, I will relate a detailed description as it may be a useful addition to your database.

    Background to the encounter: Devereux states that it took place “about 20 years ago” (circa 2000). One “overcast mid-afternoon” he and his wife Charla were driving “along a lonely country road” in County Mayo in the west of Ireland, doing fieldwork in relation to a project to “geographically map generations-old accounts of fairy paths we had uncovered in the verbatim records of University College Dublin”. Encounter passage verbatim as follows:

    “We came to a Y-junction in te narrow road. There was no road sign and, unsure of which direction to take, we slowed to a walking pace and proceeded cautiously onto the righthand fork. A level sward of low grass occupied the triangle of land between this fork of the road and the left-hand one. Suddenly, standing on the grass, there was a figure, between two and three feet tall. It was anthropomorphic and fully three-dimensional (as we could clearly determine while we were drifting slowly past). It had sprung into existence out of nowhere, and it caught my wife's and my own transfixed attentions simultaneously. The figure’s body comprised a jumble of very dark green tones, as if composed of a tight, dense tangle of foliage, rather like the woodland 100 yards or so beyond the sward of grass.. It didn’t seem to quite have a face, just a head, with deep-set eyes peering out of the green tangle. It presented a distinctly forbidding appearance. As we crawled past in our car, the figure started to turn its head in our direction, but then vanished. Charla called out “Oh shit!”. We looked at each other, both of us wide-eyed and thoroughly disconcerted. “You saw that?” I asked rhetorically. The whole episode had lasted a minute or so, but it was unquestionably an actual, if transient, objective observation”. Devereux was so shocked that he “drove away from the scene at speed, without staying to conduct further investigation”.

    Further details about the figure are provided later in the article: “It had a head and shoulders, but neither of us could recall seeing arms and legs. Either it was standing to strict attention, like with feet tight together and arms straight by its sides, or it didn’t have limbs, standing like some otherworldly bollard. As I state, it seemed distinctly forbidding, at least to me. It still haunts me even these many years later”.

    Devereux states that he was “ontologically discombobulated” by the encounter, as his research was being undertaken in relation to the premise that “fairylore was an artefact of cultural conditioning” rather than something that had actual basis in reality: “I now dearly wish I could have that encounter again, this time to behave in a more reasoned, inquisitive way. But, believe me, when you actually have an encounter with something like this you can react quite differently to the way you would normally expect yourself to”.

    Regards, Dean Ballinger, New Zealand.

    (please ignore prior version of this comment, which erroneously posted under your June 9 entry).

    1. Thanks very much, Dean. The case from Paul Devereux is a fine one and I like it a great deal. I know Paul and I respect his intellect and honesty. But, with a leprechaunish twinkle in my eye, I take special delight that this encounter messed with his cosmology a bit :=}}

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. several "random" unconnected comments posted ... without explanations, they are noise.



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