Explain This… If You Can

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I don’t know if this is a proper ghost story, or what. But it’s certainly a strange story. Let me quote from Legends of Long Beach Island by David Seibold and Charles Adams III (copyright by the authors, 1985), page 16. Short but sweet:

“Our storyteller… has more. His father swears he once saw a red-roofed, white-building village propped on the horizon a short distance from Holgate [on the southern tip of Long Beach Island, NJ]. Out fishing, he looked to the east, out to sea, and unmistakeably saw the buildings–terra cotta roofs, almost Spanish in style. He knows well it couldn’t have really been there. He blinked and rubbed his eyes, but it wouldn’t go away.”

Now there’s nothing between Holgate, NJ, and Portugal but mile after mile of the Atlantic Ocean. If we believe the witness was telling the truth–and why shouldn’t we?–then how do we explain what he saw? Does Brigadoon have a sea-going counterpart? Or was this the ghost of Atlantis? Or some as-yet unexplained natural phenomenon?

Go figure.

9 comments on “Explain This… If You Can

  1. Lee, intriguing tale. This brought to mind something from many years ago: an elderly family member who lived in Iowa farm country told me a similar story. She looked out her kitchen window, across a hilltop, and saw buildings where she knew there actually were none. Yet they appeared solid. Later, they were gone.

    1. I have no idea – but your Long Island post dredged it to my memory’s surface. Whenever I hear a few of the same kinds of stories it usually means there are lots more out there. A theory for this kind of vision could be that the viewers tap into Jung’s universal unconscious – this explanation has been given for UFO’s (inner, not outer space) and it could well explain some other odd sightings.

  2. I wouldn’t want to be too dogmatic about any of this. Optical phenomenon are not always easy to explain. My guess is that he saw some reflections off the water and his brain interpreted it as a meaningful site, in this case buildings with terra cotta roofs.

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