Last Friday, I found myself at a crossroads. It was my first time investigating a purportedly haunted location without my usual group. I was there with three friends, but also four strangers, four brand-new paranormal investigators who are finding their way in the field.
What also made this investigation special was the location. This particular Roswell home is owned by the family of a famous Georgian (Sorry. Can't go into details. It's that whole privacy thing). The house is empty and for sale, but the granddaughter of the late owner was there with us and the stories she told took us beyond the headlines, beyond what we see or read in the news. And that meant more to me than the possibility of seeing or communicating with any ghosts.
It's hard to remember that people like Nancy Pelosi or Lindsay Lohan or Rush Limbaugh or Gwyneth Paltrow, for example, are truly people. Whether we agree with them or not, whether they are trains wrecks or not, whatever. They are people. People with parents, siblings, children, friends, histories, futures and when we, the masses see these people on the TV screen or on the cover of tabloid rags, we start to think of them as things. Less than human. Oh, well, your man broke up with you so you deserved it. Then there's Your approval ratings are down? Poor baby. Bite me. I didn't vote for you because you're a loony. And let's not forget You asked to be famous/have this responsibility. Deal with it and shut up.
But to sit with a family member of one of those well-known personalities, to hear about him/her from someone who truly knows them, it was an eye-opening experience. We joked, we talked, and she reminisced about her family and gave a glimpse into her fond memories. That, to me, was more valuable than any paranormal evidence I may find. Sometimes, I think these moments of touching fellow human lives is more important than touching the next-lives of those who have already passed.