Ghosts I get, people are crazy
In the middle of our tour, and I can't even TELL you what story it was, two men pushed their way through our group, and came right up to our storyteller, pushing up against him, and talking very threateningly. I could smell the alcohol on them as they came by. Julian was a short guy, and these two drunks were very tall. They towered over him, and spoke in French in a way that I did not like at all. Julian was calmly trying to tell these two that he had a tour, and he needed to continue his story. They tried to take his hat, and do other things, just trying to start a fight. That was the problem. It was obvious that they were looking for anybody to step in and start something so that fists could start fighting. Nobody knew what to do. We didn't want our storyteller to get hurt, and we certainly didn't want US to get hurt. I started looking for somebody to help, but couldn't remember the French word for help, or police, or "oh my gosh, these two drunk guys are assaulting our storyteller" so even if I FOUND someone, I don't know what I would have said. Finally someone from a nearby bar came out, and the two guys wandered off. Our storyteller was in tears, and shaking over the event, and really the tour was ruined. He was able to finish things up, but we were all shaken, and my husband and I were really freaked out. It was not a comfortable ride back to the hotel, walking the dark streets at eleven at night. We weren't safe. We knew we weren't safe. No ghost story could be as scary, all things considered.
The particularly scary thing for me was that this is what I do. It could have been me with two drunk guys hovering over me. We start the Salt Lake City tours right next to two men's homeless shelters, it would be so easy for something violent to happen to one of us. As it happens, I was right to be scared. Opening night, as we were checking in people with reservations, there was one of the homeless men hovering around us. He was shaking. He wasn't saying anything, but stayed about 3 feet away, just hanging around the guests. We tried to talk to him, but he wouldn't respond. He started to give us the creeps, so our reservations manager decided to call the police. They said that if he tried anything, we should call them back. Lovely. Now, the girl who handles Salt Lake reservations (she's a spn fangirl who has been to many of the conventions. Some of you might know her) ends up taking tickets and selling concessions until the first round of buses leaves. Then she's left on the platform of the Denver Rio Grande Train Station with money and treats for a couple of hours by herself until the tours come back, and the next tour groups start. I've been worried about her from the beginning being there by herself, but she hasn't ever been concerned. That night, though, with that guy hovering right there, we quickly realized that we could not leave Becky there, not with the cash and everything out. I stayed out while my partner started the tour, and kept an eye on the cash, and helped her get the car loaded up. When everything was put away, and she was locked in her car, I got on the bus, and we started the tour.
When we got back, the platform was busy, Becky was busy, and the man wasn't there. I asked Becky how long he stayed hanging around, and she blanched. "Too long." she said quickly. She was sitting in her locked car, texting some friends while she waited for the next tour bus, when the man came over to her car, and tried to get in. He jiggled the door handle, left for a few minutes, then came back, and tried again to break into the car. Becky called the police. They came in a few minutes, and as soon as the man saw the lights, he started to scream obscenities and really freak out violently. Becky watched from inside her car as the police knocked the man down, cuffed him, then came to her car window to get her statement. They let her know that the man was very high, and he would be spending the night at the police station. She hasn't been by herself at the train station since.
Then Friday was my tour night. Everything was going smoothly, until our bus turned on State street to head up to the capitol building. The block was blocked off by police cars with flashing lights and caution tape. Our bus had to detour around our regular route as I tried to fill in with extra ghost stories. We didn't even get to SEE the Beehive house, because it was part of where things were blocked off! We got around the barricaded section of street, and could see all of the lights flashing as we turned to get back on our route, when suddenly there was a loud BANG coming from that section of street. Everybody on the bus gasped and started talking, as we looked to see what it was. We couldn't see anything, and we didn't have a choice but to continue the tour. We found out when the tour ended that someone had left a suspicious briefcase there on the street. The police cordoned off the area, and blew the briefcase up to make sure it was safe. We came around the corner just as the explosion occurred.
Ghost stories are wonderful. I love them because they give me the shivers and are so much fun to tell late at night. I prefer them, actually, to the stuff that really happens every day. Because people and what they are capable of, are way more scary then ghosts.