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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Grace Dieu

So its coming up to Halloween soon and I was watching ‘most haunted’ last night (google it most haunted living TV uk) when I started thinking about when I lived in the uk. Things where not going well between myself and my chap at the time and in order to get on with things, and keep my sanity I immersed myself in different activities. I remember waiting at the bus stop outside Sainsburys in Leicester and there was a newsagent right beside the stop with a small card in its window ‘ Ghost hunters wanted’ and I thought to myself ‘that’s the job for me’ (I needn’t explain that Im a bit of a fearless freap for that kinda thing). So anyways I get home and ring the number and I was told to meet in a pub called the ‘old plantagenet’ the following evening. Now I knew the pub and it was a bit of an old boys place but I went anyway expecting something like a funeral directors convention going on but I was surprised that the people I met where quite older than my young 25 years at the time, most where knocking around their late 40s but good people , down to earth and all open minded and a tad sceptical which I seen as a good sign.The next evening we went on a walk around the city where Andrew, the founder of SPECTA (Search for Paranormal Evidence and Compilation of Theory into Apparitions)gave us a tour of the local ‘haunts’. One of the guys involved , John, organised a vigil for the next night on the outskirts of Leicester in the middle of nowhere and it was called Grace Dieu Priory where a reputed phantom French nun had been making a regular appearance to Bus drivers and Road workers over the past year.

We arrived at Dusk , and because of the twilight we went into the local pub with the canny name of ‘the bloody nun’ over its door and had a wee dram too warm us up for the nights vigil. John, who I mentioned before, started to dole out equipment and being the owner of a very large camping and outdoors shop had state of the art stuff including night vision googles, torches walkie talkies etc

GRACE DIEU PRIORY, Leicestershire.
The ruin and vicinity is allegedly haunted by a phantom nun thought to be Roisia De Verdun, a Canoness who is interred at nearby Belton Church.

Now the ruins of Grace Dieu is quite sprawling and in the middle of A grazing/pasture fields, B disused railway lines and C small uphill forest. Everyone was assigned to a ‘post’ as to were most of the sightings had been reported. Mine however was overlooking the disused railway line and the only access to it was over some farming gates and uphill through the forest . Id didn’t help that I drew the short straw for going it on my own since there where odd numbers. So as the new initiate steeled myself in front of the group with a demeanour of a marine on a mission and off I went.

Like I said it was pastureland and in the middle of the night without night vision goggles (my luck there wasn’t enough to go around) and the cow pats underfoot made like a veritable mine field, Never was I so happy to be on my own trying not to slip every five seconds and master climbing six foot farm gates so as not to do myself an injury with my shit encrusted trainers , My dignity would have been in shreds had I had someone with me and I was even embaressed for myself with the clumsiness of walking every 5 feet with my arms shooting out scrabbling for balance. I eventually got to a clearing where I could see the rail track and most of the other points of which my colleagues where staked out about seventy feet below. I was just about to radio in that I was in situ when behind me I heard a crack.

In that millisecond it sounded like a bone but soon registered it was a branch but not under my foot , as I slowly turned my head I heard this primordial bray or grunt - My heckles shot up and I turned to face what ever demonic beast it was…

There in front of me was a fucking cow! A Cow! I and everyone else within the vicinity heard the thick Irish roar of ‘Oh lovin Jaysus!’ exasperate out from within me. You see I wasn’t out of the proverbial woods yet. I couldn’t see if this was a cow or a pissed off bull but as soon as I shone my torch and in panic told it to fuck off it sped off like a stolen Porsche. I remember just laughing myself sick; half with relief and half with the sheer comedy of it all, and trying to recant the story to the rest of them when they scrambled to my aid. That certainly was NOT the most eventful vigil I had with Specta but it was the funniest..


slaghammer said...

That is some good story telling! Grace Dieu Priory is a beatiful and creepy looking place and that cow pic is hilarious. I suspect that night critters are the source of many a tale of phantoms and demons. I was raised within a short distance of an old cemetery and there was never shortage of coyotes yelping and howling after nightfall. A number of visiting city kids left with a reinforced belief in ghosts I am sure.

Hammer said...

Roisia De Verdun was a closet hindu and that cow was her reincarnation tring to commune with you.

Stucco said...

Pity the cow wasn't sleeping. Cow tipping can help pass the time.

Judith said...

Thanks you slag, I have to say that when I was on these things I kept a really open mind I went on a dozen of these different vigils before I upt sticks back to Ireland but that story may have been the funniest but there was a few hairy incidents that somehow logic and natural phenonmena just did not come into the equation.

Hammer if she was a hindu my guess is that the cow slipped in its own shit with the fright we both gave ourselves and probably was burger fodder the next morning

Id love to cow tipping although something tells me that not many of them would be asleep after my first one as Id be convulsing and howling with laughter!