Saturday, October 16, 2021

The Weeping Willow that was seeded with a Hawthorn Crab apple tree and it became Haunted when Ambrose Lubbard hung himself from it !

 I'm not really one of those who goes for scary stories. I don't think about things that go bump in the night.  I mean , so what if a brisk cold wind whip's across my face in the middle of the night when I have been sleeping fpr hours , the bedroom door has been closed as well as the window because the heat because it is December and the heat is on. Underneath the covers nice and warm when that cold draft swirls around my face like a whirlpool eddy and my body responds with its own shiver that starts at my warm feet turning them and the rest of my body as cold as the breeze making me think I need to get out of bed to go pee but my brain is not allowing it because I think if I touch the flooe with any part of my body I will be sucked under the bed and into some alternate universe where cold drafts are a normal thing when its warm and no wind can get into the room at night and its very late and I know in my heart as well as in my brain as soon as I wake up the sleeping woman next to me there will be no draft and I will get the shaft for waking her up. So yeah I never had that happen either.                                                                                         Well I  am going to tell you something that happened back in the day when the days were full of adventure and money. I have never told another this story because it was just another day trying to hustle some money so me and another couple of guys that I usually worked with to get in one of our trucks and take off for as long as there was  money left to spend. So I will leave it up to you, I will tell this story as I remember it and you can decide whether or not you believe it, because I had it happen to me and I lived through it and I don't know if someone told me the exact same thing if I would believe it.                                                     Now I know I said back in the day so let me make that a little clearer, I'm talking about the 70's and in 74-75 I was going to school in Meriden and living in Durham. The house we were building in Durham was finished enough to live in but I was still in High School so it was decided that I would get to frive to Meriden every day and no one questioned whether or not I made it to class, it was the 70's remember those years, I do !                                                                         I never missed several of my classes, Chemistry with Mr. Krizanowski, the man who showed me and several other students that Mr. Kriz took under his scientific wing and showed up the wonders that awaited us. He always had movies Sci-Fi movies and showed us way back when that every time there was an explosion in space and there was flames he pointed out that there was no air in space to support combustion. There was many other times he made us think while laughing our ass off but tats another story. One of the other two teachers was Ms. Nessing who lets just say we had a common interest in each other and it wasn't just ( A + B )2 = A2 +2AB + B. The last teacher was Mr. Okeefe the shop teacher. Mr. Okeefe really took my under his wing and helped me decide that construction and building things especially the demolition part of the work was wild. He and I ended up building a friendship that lasted long after I graduated. We bowled each other and he never won a single game but I learned to be a graceful winner from him and he taught me about working for myself and the in and outs of working with the general public.                                                                                            I am still not sure as to why I never told him that for many of my younger years I traveled with my grandfather to his jobs with his clients, but it the origin of me liking outdoor work. It was with my grandfather that I found the love of working outdoors and building things. I found that I had a proclivity for renovation and an exuberance for demolition. Mr. Okeefe brought me to my very first Construction site and I fell in love with everything. The machines the men t but this time I will ask and the momentum of a construction crew building something, also the check at the end of the week was just out of sight, a lot of money for a 17 year old back in the 70's.                                                                                               Okay this is where I will stop or now. I usually don't ask for comments or anything but this time I will ask. Do you want to read more ?  even if it is just one single person I will continue. I really hope someone asks. Thanks   THE WRITER

  Once again I am here at my favorite place. Well not this place but where it starts. The notebook where I have written this story out and now I do the editing and write this story at the same time. So here is a continuation of "The Weeping Hawthorn"                                                                                      So as I told you dear reader I loved those three classes and those three special teachers. I know that most people did have their favorites and maybe that inspired you to do something along the line of what that teacher taught or just helped you to understand things a little better.                         After seeing that construction sight I could not get the image of machinery and men doing their thing out of my head. I pestered Mr. Okeefe everyday trying to find out when I might get a chance to work on one of these sites.        I told John Okeefe that any job that comes up I will do whatever it is, just get me a chance I'll take care of the working well enough so I don't make you look bad. I had known John Okeefe for  almost four years every since my freshman class when I accidentally spilled wood glue on a Christmas present from his niece, A Fisherman Sweater that was made in Ireland just for him. The sweater was made from sheep's wool which is off white or like a cream color, it was a beautiful sweater and he has worn it to class the day I first got there and was holding the container of glue and the top which I did not know was not pushed down all the way to stop any leakage or from doing what I did. I squeezed the container and a great squirt of glue went in a perfect arc from the container, and while it seemed like it went in slow motion in front of the whole class, it really happened in under 2 seconds, right to the front of his beautiful sweater.  I thank ever star in heaven that it rinsed out after wetting it blotting it drying it over and over throughout the class, While every one else was learning why we have to wear safety glasses and a mask I was doing my penance. That is how Mr. Okeefe and I became friends.                                                                             So now when we talked about me going on a construction site he always had a hesitation that made me think he was holding out on me with some kind of job that maybe he was thinking about if I might be good enough or perhaps not good enough to this imaginary job I was thinking about. Well it turned out it was not my imagination and he did have something for me, a great job with even better pay and not having to be 18 to run any equipment. But now my imagination was telling me that maybe this job was to good to be true, then I laughed at myself for wanting a job thinking Mr. Okeefe had a job, now I got a job and I am trying to talk myself out of having a job, I really am a boob, but I was young and being a boob is part of being young and learning.                                                                                  The job was really full time it ran from spring to spring and was mostly the upkeep of the Lubbard Estate. Yup the Lubbard's Estate was one of those places that when you we really young the other really young kids you hung out with dared yo to go over the wall and get a crab apple and get back over the wall before the attack dogs got you. Well first of all there were never any attack dogs or dogs of any kind. There were goats but those were in pens on the other side of the Estate. Were the wall was being breached by 10 and 11 year old master minds was the back 40 as it was called by farmers and the only thing there was the Weeping Willows and the Hawthorn crab apple trees that had not been looked after for a hundred years or so the master minds had told the recruit's that were going over the wall to come back with their prize or not come back at all.                   There was more stories that you could ever think of except for the fertile mind of a 10 year old and if you lived in Meriden back then or maybe even now you have heard some of them. Family incest with two headed kids running around at night howling like dogs. Holes in the ground all year long that looked like the hole was just right for a coffin and of course the older kids had seen the coffins but never what was inside of them. There was one really good one about a young kid named Ambrose, yeah even the older  kids laughed with us the younger ones about that name, but the laughter went away fast when it was said that he hung himself from the evil tree. This tree was visible from atop the wall. It really was a scary looking tree. Somehow a Weeping Willow had gotten to close to the Hawthorn crab Apple tree and they grew together. It was the creepiest tree you will ever see outside of a Horror film or a really bad dream.                                                                                           The story was pretty simple, the kid hung himself for being a freak of some kind and because the tree was evil it took his soul and the tree never let the kid go, so now he is in the tree and does all kind of evil stuff. I boldly asked what kind of evil stuff can a tree do , I mean it can't go anywhere can it.Of course it can go anywhere it wants, it's an evil tree with a kids soul in it. The tree cries sometimes. That did it no one went over the wall that day. Excuses were made and even the older boys got a bit antsy after answering the question about trees that can do anything.                                So now here I was right on time at the front gate, waiting for Mr. Okeefe and the head grounds keeper. After I waited for maybe one minute I saw Mr.Okeefe's big head of red hair and the guy driving a cool little car that looked like a souped up golf cart coming down the driveway. I saw him pull something from the visor over his head and it must have been a remote control for the gate because as soon as he put it back up to the visor the gates separated and they drove through. I always had a smile when I saw John Okeefe but it was a short one when I saw the mans face besides John Okeefe. He could have doubled as Bela Lugosi and his eyes held on to me like I was hypnotized. I shook it off and hoped he didn't see me staring at him, that probably would not make a good first impression.                   It's funny how first impressions are because as soon as I  moved towards the tractor that really wasn't a tractor but something in between a tractor a golf cart and a small pick up truck, Herman was watching me but with a smile on his face. You seem to like my little invention !? Yeah it's really cool you made this ?  Well yeah me and John did some dissecting on a golf cart and a station wagon and attached it to a small tractor, it does everything that I needed but couldn't do with just a tractor so me and John built our own and it works perfect. You should see the rig we can attach for plowing or at the other end mowing and trimming, now that's where you can come in, do you think you can run a machine like this ? My eyes lit up like they just gave me the keys to the castle and told me they were going away for the weekend , the liquor cabinet was unlocked and it was okay to have some friends over. After I did not answer they said get in and I'll show you around and explain what's what and what 's expected of you.                                                               Well that gets us closer to what is going to happen when I see the Weeping Willow and the Hawthorn tree and what is expected of me around the Estate. I do hope you are enjoying the story so far, I am, it is like revisiting some people I haven't thought of in such a long time and I find I miss them dearly. More to come please comment on any and every thing,go ahead and comment for good or for evil each has it's own use !  THE WRITER  10/17/2021                     So now here I am with John Okeefe and Herman never really got his last name I don't think hes the one signing the paycheck so I didn't really care. I was about to see the place up close and personal, so many childhood memories, mostly bad because they were all made up from other kids that were trying to scare the pants off of any other child that would listen long enough to shit his or her pants and run away crying. I think if any of us had gotten over the wall and gotten an apple the stories would have been a lot less scary, but seeing as none of us did all that was there was our imagination of what was over the wall, was it half a bad as what we were told, nothing like it at all who could tell, not any of us.                                                                                  Hang on , said Herman its a rough ride in some places and Hildi is temperamental at times, John added in, or maybe just mental same as the driver. Herman gave John a look and took off at the same time, Herman had the wheel to hold on to but John was almost thrown out and I went ass over elbows from the back because I had not even gotten all the way in before Herman's wild ride began. I don't know if it was on purpose or if it just happened like that , you know being in the right place at the wrong time or something close to that, but John was smiling probably because he stayed seated and I was looking at them from the ground up. Herman's face did not change at all and I would find out that his face never changed even when the situation probably called for it.                                                     Nothing looked as I thought it should but knowing that it was just my imagination that made up my memories I just sat back and made mental notes about certain things. The aluminum poles ever 20 or so feet apart with camera's and what looked like those lights over your garage doors that light up when you pull up. Motion sensors and spot lights were on those poles and as we went just a bit further I saw the Dogs house, yeah a real honest to goodness house. Individual windows were each dogs pen and it looked like six on this side also a second floor with another six on this side.                                                                                                So there are dogs, I said a little to loud  and Herman replied yeah we have had dogs for about ten years now. After all the times people came climbing the wall to get at the Weeping Hawthorn. Everyone wanted a piece of the tree, it got so bad we had to set up the motion sensors then people got smart and set off the lights and such at one place to get in at another place so that's when we got the dogs. It's funny no one ever tried to get any apples, peaches, pears, nothing except that tree, even had to stop a couple times and put out fires and once we stopped something that we all thought was a Witches thing that was trying to bring back Ambrose. Ambrose Lilac Lubbard the boy who hung himself right in this tree.                                     I hadn't noticed at all but we had been driving around the property and missed most of where we were actually driving but here we were. Well not really there because of all the water. The weeping Hawthorn and many other trees were submerged in what looked like 3 or 4 feet of water. I could see no river or stream that could account for all this water so I asked. Herman where did all this water come from it looks as if it just come up from underground. Herman shook his head in the positive and said you are partly right. Now I don't believe it, but after that Witches episode the place started to flood every year at this time. It's the same time Ambrose hung himself. If you ask me it just the way water goes. Around that time over the next hill construction was going on to put up the Mall but when they found Indian Artifacts that put the kibosh on the whole thing but it did mess with the Aqua-fir and where and how the underground water flowed. So we get the water every year, it goes down pretty fast once the weather goes dry, but for now we got water.                                                              You won't have to worry about that water once you start out at the front by the time you finish all that and work you way around it will be plenty dry for you to clean it all up. Evey one here has a particular job and if we keep moving along every one will be fine. Sometimes we mix it up a bit with some of the jobs and when they get done but it all works out at the end, wouldn't you say so John. I had forgotten all about Mr. Okeefe even though he was in the front seat just keeping quiet looking around as though he was expecting something, it was a bit weird for him but I put it out of my mind for now but in later months I was reminded of this day and how he acted. Sure Herman everything ends up well, I mean ends up fine in the end.         So I finally got to see the tree that has caused commotion for years. Everyone who lived in Meriden at that time knew of the tree and how Ambrose hung himself. What I did learn along the way is that Ambrose did not hand himself the way people thought and that the tree seemed to have a look about it. Maybe it was the weeping willows slender branched that swayed when the wind blew or how the thorns from the Hawthorn Crab Apple tree made those slender branched look like little claws when the Sunlight hit them just right, either way people had it right, that tree was the most freakish tree I had ever seen, and little did I know then that it did cry, I heard it and it sounded like a young person crying, a young boy crying.                                             Some more story done, it feels as though it's getting good , at least from what I remember from back then. I do hope you are liking this story it seems as though no one had read any of it. I will keep on writing no mater what, the story has me now and will not let me go until I have told the entire story and those that read it will know the truth of the Weeping Hawthorn...  THE WRITER  10/19/2021                        Well how about that, 2 readers have read this, My Mom and I am not sure who the other is, I thank you from the bottom of my heart all the way through every Atria and artery , vein and capillary that comes from the Heart and goes to every opening in which Blood flows to and from on the inside of your body and when another someone comes along and puts a hole in you from knife, bullet, letter opener( yeh that's a knife ) how about a Lobster Fork that would put some neat little holes in you. Enough of the Blood Letting, on with the Story.                                                  So where were we, I was seeing the yard that I would be taking care of for the next several months, probably more than that but as  told John I would do one season to see what the job really entailed and how the other workers and myself got along. Now that I had taken the grand tour I realized why they needed so many different people to do pretty much one specific job that includes nothing more than just that job. This place was Humongous. 75 acres just with the land that the Estate House was on, that did not include the river across the road, ( which was owned by the Lubbards) leased out to the City when their water supply went low, all the orchards and the grounds that the grape vines were. I did say were because after 5 or 6 seasons the vines never took like they were supposed to so now its a bunch of crappy looking grapes that taste good when you pick them fresh but I was told something the soil is not right for bringing out the best flavor for the Wine they wanted to produce, so now they make jelly and preserves.      On the way back to the main house John and Herman were having a lively talk about Shade Tobacco. Herman told John that Reigart Lubbard had just  purchased  some land up near the Border of Mass, a little town called Enfield. It was a small purchase of 100 acres but it included the barns they were needed to dry the tobacco and a water supply right on the property. "Sounds like a sweet deal" replied John. I was trying to understand how I was going to get back and forth because my car had just died and the girl I was shacking up with had decided I was just not right for her, that was the result of me having dinner with her, her Mom and Dad when the Mom and I were caught in the wine closet in a bit of a tight situation, I had my hand down her tight situation and of course there really was no explanation necessary. I literally got caught with my have in the Coochie Jar. I needed a place to sleep, like right away and of course a car would be nice. " So John, I saw you walked here this morning I am glad you are a morning person I like the fact you got here with out your car, its a 69 Camaro, the 327 I think" Herman finished talking John Okeefe and looked over to me like I was supposed to know what to answer. " Yup'' was all I said. "He's not much for conversation is he John" Herman said. " Just ask him and get it over with we are almost back and I don't want to have him cry all the way home if he doesn't except" Herman smiled , stopped the Tractor, looked over to me and asked, " You need a place to stay and a car or maybe a place to work on your car but still may need transportation, but I guess what I'm asking is would you like to stay here while you save up some money for a place of your own , no more shacking up with someone and a car for your use". Okay, now I know what I was thinking, are you thinking, whats up with this why does this seem way to hood to be true, Yeah that is exactly what I was thinking. Herman went on, " So I guess your thinking how is this possible , why does this feel like it's to good to be true,well I'll tell you , it is true and it is good but there are some restrictions to this but mostly John was telling me what had happened in the last couple of weeks and he also told me that your work ethic is superb and that you always go a little further that what the job calls for and that is the man I want working for me"          " Well, if the restrictions are  not to strict I think we got a deal, even if it is to good to be true what can I do I'm kind of stuck and besides, What's the Worst that can happen"!  Boy was  going to find out that I would have really liked to wish for the worst because what happened was way beyond the worst that could have happened. I did not know it at the time but I had just sent myself in a direction that would change the outcome of my life for the next two years.              " So what are these restrictions that you mentioned, I mean what I can't chase after the maids ?  Ha Ha !  "Well its something like that but lets get back to the Estate and let you see what your digs are like and we will talk about the restrictions and such and if its all good with you you can stay tonight and we will send a couple of men to gather up your things , John ha told me that your ex was in the process of burning everything" My face went flush, thinking about all my albums my stereo my clothes. Herman saw my face and put a warm hand on my shoulder and told me, " it's okay John talked her out of it and promised everything would be gone first thing in the morning, and we will still do that for you even if you don't take the job but we really want you to work with us, so lets get home and see your new place, okay John ?  All I could say was, " Okay' my head was swimming in weird thoughts and all kinds of scenario's with me being the main course at the Devil's Dinner, maybe I need to read a little less Stephan King !                                    I had not realized how long we were all out there but when we were coming across the back field in to view of the main house and the drive was just being lit up along with all the hanging chandelier on the front porch or veranda which ever is the bigger of the two unless of course there is another name for its bigger brother which I could see the light from around the back and it must be really big with the amount of light I was seeing. Through the Triple hung windows, yeah triple hung they went from floor to ceiling and during the summer heat the bottom two sash opened up to be able to walk out of like an 8 foot tall door. At a quick glance I could see several Tiffany lamps and smaller chandlers all leading to a gathering of people that were all conversing until they saw us and Herman went to Riegart Lubbard , whispered something and Reigart looked at me like he was sizing up a prized animal. It was just a look that took a second but I knew that look from others, kind of like my Ex's Dad after the Coochie Jar incident.         My John had slipped back into a comfortable chair so he could sit back and watch to happenings, I tried to get to the other chair and sit my tired ass down but with no luck.            Herman was calling me over to met, mostly likely my new boss, I guess this was part of the restrictions that Herman mentioned. I thought to my self I hope I'm making a boat load of money to put up with all this shit. I put on my best smile approached the gathering, apologized for my appearance and had a drink pointed at me from a silver tray. I guess somethings are worth a bit of shit.                        I lasted 20 minutes before I yawned and made everyone in that gathering laugh, at least I think it was a laugh. Riegard told Herman to get me to bed, he and I would talk in the morning. Herman did as he was told and sent a signal to John that I did not see, but as I reached for the Volute, John was there besides Herman and all of a sudden I felt as though I had been drugged and needed to be carried to where ever it was I was going to pass out. I thought I was joking but what you don't know or understand at the time will hopefully not kill you.                                                                So now I am inside this Mansion and I have seen the property at lest most of what could be seen, oh yeah there was defiantly  things that were not being seen at least for now so we are on a trip you and I ( Dear Reader ) you will know if I was drugged or if I just had a long day and needed some sleep. What are those restrictions Herman talked about and what the Hell is Mr. Okeefe doing with these people , WOW things teachers do when they not in school teaching !  More to come I hope to get some done tomorrow we will see where this goes , you and I . It is extremely weird revisiting this after so many years, its funny I was just trying to write a short story about something that scared me when I got a new job at a place I had heard about for a really long time and I thought it was all just a bunch of bull that kids tell to younger kids to scare the shit out of them. Who Knew, not me at the time and not you... YET !          THE WRITER  10/24/ 2021                                                        I am suppose to be writing a rewrite for Little Paddle. I keep finding myself back here on the grounds or in the Mansion of the Lubbards. It has brought back so many memories of the times. The 70's were an awesome time, the people of the 70's were awesome. Nothing like the children, from age 15 through about 35 or so are the children that look at us old folk and see right through us, as if we didn't do everything they are trying to do but we did it all without Social Media and having everyone comment on our actions. They were ours actions because of who we were not the person we want people to see and comment about.                  Nothing, nothing at all. I don't remember a thing, but here I am lying in a bed with a very soft blanket over me. This room is so big I could fit my first apartment in it. I could see some of the bathroom through the open door. A window was slightly open at the head of the bed and I could feel a breeze and smell the fresh air pushing through my hair. Okay I remember being introduced to some people, Herman, Riegart and some other gentlemen I can quite focus on. A drink was pushed at me on a sliver tray ... that's it, that's all  I can remember. I swung mt feet out from the covers and found out my boots were off, my flannel shirt also but my Led Zepplin Tee and straight leg Wranglers were still on. I guess I didn't have any company. As I tried to stand I got caught up on in the covers my feet went first then my head spun and landed on my face, I'm glad the blanket was soft.                                                                            A small quiet knock called out to me so I unplanted my face from the blanket tried not to fall over and said come in as I sat down on the edge of the bed. Wow, I would have remembered this girl. Even though I was almost fully dressed I was in a strange bedroom so I was embarrassed when see came in, I wanted to cover up or something but I was sitting on the bed and my flannel was way across the room and now my boots were under the blanket so I just sat there. Both of us me sitting her standing at the door looked at each other for what seemed like at least 3 or 4 minutes but finally she spoke, with an accent, I thought might be french. " Are you ready " ?               Well I like a woman who is forward but we were never even introduced, I mean not that it might matter but it certainly took me off my guard. " Ah, ready for what"? What a smile , both playful and seductive all at the same time, "Breakfast" She waited a second before adding. " Why? what did you have in mind" ?  Before I could look twice she was gone and I was left with my mouth hanging open but ready for something to eat.                                                          As fast as my head would let me I found my boots put them on and didn't lace them all the way, grabbed my flannel and went out the door and almost ran smack full face into her. "Emily" still with an accent, I heard her perfectly but still said, "what" ?  "Emily is my name and you are John, Yes" ?  " John, Yes, hello Emily nice to meet you", I was way to close this early or what ever time it was , way to close, I backed up and she went forward and told me to follow. " Master Riegart left a vehicle for you to pick up your things so you can be here to start tomorrow morning" Emily was moving in the general direction of the stairs and I was following to where ever she was going, nodding all the way.                                                                                          Not knowing a thing, my head still in a fog I asked, "where is everyone" ?  "Master Riegart told us to let you sleep until you wake and let you know about the vehicle to bring your things here". " Yeah but where is everyone ? I mean there was a party last night, no?" She looked at me like what are you talking about, but all she said was, " No, no party just Master Riegart and his business people", "Okay I got to ask what was in that drink I was given" ?  " You were not given a drink, you took a drink from a tray"  "Okay , I drink and that was not something everyone drinks, or at least something I don't drink, I think" "Master Riegart always has Absinthe with his business people" "Absinthe, you mean the liquor with drugs in it" ? "There are no drugs in Absinthe, it is all flowers and herbs in Absinthe"  Well something knocked me out last night all I remember is taking a drink from a silver tray and that is about all I remember"  I saw it plain as day when I said Silver tray, her face changed, I saw it. I said what as soon as I saw the change, "what" ?  She said nothing, "Nothing" and she left me at the front door handed me some keys and went away pretty fast or maybe it was just the herbs and flowers.            I took my time getting myself ready to go back, I had no idea what was in store for me but let me tell you, I was in store for some crazy shit that started the very next day and the whole week after.




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