I promised you the nightmare honeymoon story, and you're going to get it.
We were staying in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, a small artsy tourist community in the heart of the Ozarks. It's a wonderful place, and I try to get out there every couple of years just to look at all the pretty stuff.
Eureka Springs is home of the historic Crescent Hotel
, built in 1886 and now fully restored to its former glory. It's utterly gorgeous, captivatingly so. It is also haunted.
I will state for the record that I am no great believer in ghosts. I don't categorically deny the supernatural, but I do believe that most experiences I and others have had are explicable by more mundane means.
That said, I do believe the trip was cursed.
The first night I was hit with an allergy attack so bad I could not see to drive. There was no 24-hour pharmacy in town, so we had to drive 20 miles through blind-curving Ozark mountain roads to the nearest Wal-Mart. In pitch darkness. No streetlights. Total dropoffs on either side. In the pelting rain. I had to go along, because my driver can't navigate by himself, and if he got lost, I knew he would never find his way home.
The ordeal was enough to wear me out completely. We got back to the hotel and crashed. Inasmuch as you can "crash" in a room with a portrait that stares and stares and staaares at you, and a rocking chair that isn't quite empty, even when it is.
The next day was fun; we walked around town, bought some stuff, had a good time. When evening came, we got dressed and prepared to go downstairs to dine in the gorgeous ballroom.
As I went down the stairs – walking, mind you, not running – I tripped over nothing at all and went pitching ass over teakettle. I only narrowly avoided breaking my neck. As it was, I twisted my ankle quite badly. I, of course, was sitting on the landing laughing my ass off, while Sargon worried over me.
We limped down to the dining room, had dinner anyway, with my foot in a chair and an ice pack on the ankle. The food was awesome, but the dining room was creepy as hell. It was completely empty, and in the slanting yellow sun, it seemed to have the cast of yesteryear.
We were alone in the dining room, which was silent. Both Sargon and I distinctly had the impression of other diners, other people, the way you do when you're in an empty place that has seen a lot of people move through. I could swear I remember hearing music, but that may just have been the pain.
At any rate, no ghosts, just a place with a lot of old memories very close to the surface. Very close. The place is utterly beautiful, and utterly creepy, and was even more so before they restored it, shortly after we honeymooned there.
It wasn't until a couple of years later that I heard from a friend (who hadn't even heard about the ankle incident) that, on that self-same stairway, a woman had fallen and broken her neck on her honeymoon. It was suspected that her husband, a doctor, had pushed her.
Yeah, that's the Twilight Zone music you're hearing.
I haven't had any luck tracking down the source of this legend, because the folks at the Crescent really, really
don't like talking about ghosts, or bad things that have happened there. This is either because they are covering things up, or because they want you to take one of their ghost tours. Either way, probably shrewd, since mystery is good for business.
Anyway, we came home early because I couldn't walk at all, and the doctor said it was about the worst a sprain can be without snapping something or breaking something. I couldn't walk for a couple of weeks. It pretty much sucked, but it makes a great story. Especially the part where I went plummeting down the steps and my dress flew up, flashing my naked ass to the world. (What?! Why the hell would I wear panties to dinner on my freakin' honeymoon?)
And now, for the actual reenactment:( No Naamahs were harmed to make these photographs. )
Now, I promised you a chance to tell your own horror stories.
I want bat_cheva
and her husband to have something really goofy to read when they get back. And this is also my way of ensuring that, you know, they're having a good time and will come home totally safe.
So, let's have it. What's your worst honeymoon story? Did your wedded bliss start out with a bang when you blew a tire being chased by the Wild Hunt? Did your spouse turn into a tentacular sea-creature and try to unscrew your head like a bottle cap? Did your mother-in-law also stay the night?