When I was on my Europe trip last summer, I stayed at hotels and Airbnb’s, chosen by a few key factors about 2 days in advance. When I was going to Chamonix, an Alpine ski town on the France side of the Swiss border, I booked myself at Hotel de L’Arve because it met my criteria.
When I arrived, it was clean and tidy, but definitely had the feel of an older ski lodge. I’m not too snobby when it comes to accommodations so I was only too happy to make myself comfortable after an exhausting day.
When you first walked into the actual room, there was a small space that had hooks and an armoire that served as a sort of “mud room” for skiers to hang and dump all their equipment. This space led into the main bedroom which had just enough space for a queen-sized bed on the opposite side, a nightstand next to it, and a desk and tv across from it.
The first night, I was woken up at around 2 or 3 in the morning because the tv turned on. By itself. I hadn’t been watching it earlier and no, the clicker was nowhere near me. In fact, I had to crawl out of the sheets to reach across to the desk to even find it and turn the tv off. You know when you’re half asleep you process things in a weird way? So when this happened I didn’t think anything of it. I literally thought “That was weird. They must have the tv set to a timer.” I crawled back into bed and fell asleep.
The next night, around the same time, I got woken up again by two light, quick knocks at my door. As I confusedly tried to figure this out, I distinctly heard a sound like someone shuffling their feet on the carpet — inside the “mud room”!! This finally woke me up enough for the alarm bells to go off. My heart started to race as I reached to turn the light on. The shuffling stopped. I did not dare get out of bed to investigate. It was at this moment that my brain finally connected the dots — “why in the world would the tv turn on by itself? It must be a ghost.”
I always thought if I experienced paranormal activity, I’d be petrified. It turns out once my brain rationalized that it was a ghost — once I put a name to the thing that went bump in the night — it sort of calmed me down. So I simply but firmly told the ghost, out loud,
“Ghost, you are not welcome here. You have to leave. The power of Christ compels you,”
or something like that, but I definitely invoked the name of Jesus, being the nice Catholic girl that I am.
I heard no more shuffling nor any other noises, nor did I see or feel anything (had I seen the ghost that would’ve sent me over the edge). So there was nothing left for me to do except turn off the light and go back to sleep.
The next day while I was in my room I heard other guests going to and from their rooms outside my door. “Maybe someone accidentally knocked on my door? That shuffling I heard was probably people outside and I just got confused.” The one thing I couldn’t explain away, the thing I could not get over, was the television turning on by itself.
Until someone can explain to me the tv thing, I will continue to believe there was a ghost in my room at the Hotel de L’Arve in Chamonix. It seemed harmless. Maybe it’s bored stuck in the afterlife. I hope I at least gave it a good chuckle.