Think back to when you were a kid. Did you wake in the night and think there was a person standing in a corner of your room? It happened to me a lot. I “saw” boogeymen in my room more times than I want to think about. It probably had something to do with the Nancy Drew Mystery I was reading right before I turned out the light. And, to make matters worse my childhood bedroom had knotty pine walls. I think most of Nancy Drew’s mysteries had a hidden door built into the paneling. Often my imagination could see every wall in my room looking like a potential hidden door. Or, someone was looking at me – with one eye – through a knot hole. Oh. I would lay there in total fear, wanting to call out to my mother, but afraid because the bad buy was closer and could get to me before my mom could. So, I would lie there, trying not to move, hoping he wouldn’t know I knew he was there, and maybe – just maybe he would go away. Finally, I would fall asleep and realize the next morning that it was some clothing hanging on my closet door that was making the “man shape”. Oh, how frustrating! After a few of those experiences I learned to close my closet door. That never stopped the dreams of someone coming through one of my bedroom walls, but it did eliminate some boogeymen from my life.
Come back to the present. It’s one-thirty in the morning, the lines are creaking, the fenders are groaning, and then I hear a solid thump against the hull. I have been listening to the lines and the fenders all winter here in Paradise Village Marina. There is an almost constant surge in the marina – that varies in intensity, and all the boats suffer from the constant movement caused by the surge. I was almost asleep when I hear a “thump” on the hull. A the solid thump. I heard it a few nights ago, and then again tonight. Wait! There it was again. (Why am I the one that hears all the noises? Captain wears ear plugs!) I hold my breath, racking my brain as to why the thumps.
They are solid enough that I actually “feel” them. Is something out there? What could it be? My eyes are wide open and I am awake. It isn’t totally dark, due to the dock lights around the marina. My eyes are probably bug-eye open by now. All my senses are on alert. I grab Captain’s shoulder and shake.
“Bruce! Someone’s out there!”
He comes awake and listens – he doesn’t hear anything. I grab him again.
“I know someone is out there”! All this was said in whispers. I don’t want them to know we are on to them.
Bruce goes topside to take a look around. I am still lying as still as ever – waiting. What?? A face – I see a face in our head port hole. No, I don’t. I do. There he is and he is scoping out the room. I don’t think he knows I can see him. I am afraid to move and scare him off.
No, Angie, there is no one; a human head won’t fit in there – you know better. Well, there is a head – and then I see an arm! The intruder has his arm through the screen of the porthole and now his arm is working its way down the bulkhead. There is nothing to steal but the brass clock – but I like that clock. I can see his hand grasp the clock and I flew out of bed.
“You put that back”, I yell in a very firm voice – so they can’t tell I am scared!
I run in, turn on the light in the head – and – and nothing. Nothing! Bruce came running at my hollering and he saw what I saw – nothing! The curtain was hanging properly in place and it was virtually impossible for me to have seen a face – or for that matter for a face to look into the porthole up against the screen. Really, it was nothing, but my heart didn’t stop pounding for awhile, and all I could think was that I didn’t leave my closet door open.
We went topside again and checked around the boat. There was nothing to see. No one was about. The boats were moving with the surge, but the water was flat.
Maybe it was what I ate at dinner that night. It wasn’t what I was reading before I turned out the light. Maybe it was the wine. Maybe all the photos of the sharks that Doug shared with us disturbed me. Maybe it was that I was coming down with a raging cold, but the creaks, groans, and bumps were real. And then my imagination took off from there.
Asking around, one answer for these solid “bumps” is there are some very large fish swimming in the marina, and they may bump into the boats while chasing after food. Hm, well, it makes as much sense as anything, and I really want some kind of non-threatening answer. The water here in the marina is very murky. It must be pitch black under our hull – so maybe big fish do run into us occasionally. Just to check out the theory I am going to watch my fish finder for a few days.
Who says I don’t have a vivid imagination? I just wish it would show up at blog time!
We spent the last week doing battle with head colds and fending off creative dramas while Living in Mexico – At home today.