We tweeted about it, we blogged about it and we posted on our Facebook page about it. The “it” was the “Live” twitter event from our investigation in Paragould, AR.
I am a firm believer that things go wrong and go wrong frequently. Whether it is a result of miscommunication or the fates aligning against you, one thing is certain: Nothing is certain. (Not even that one thing.)
The recent investigation was muddled from the start in the sense that it was an “emergency” investigation. We were contacted on a Tuesday and asked to be in Paragould by Friday. I spoke to the homeowner and mentioned my concern that we all work day jobs on Friday and then a three-hour drive to Paragould followed by a several hour investigation then a three-hour drive back to Little Rock would put most of us up for 24 hours by the time we got home.
The safety of my team was a primary concern. She agreed and said that Saturday would be best for her as well because her husband would be home. I emailed her my contact information and a rundown on the investigation process.
Apparently she had not received my email, I am assuming she didn’t because the following would not have transpired.
She called the founder of the group at his work number. He is out-of-town on Thursday and off work on Friday. She left a message for him telling him the investigation was off, unfortunately no one would hear that message until Monday.
My group joined me at my apartment and we headed out on the road together at 4:00 p.m. Saturday to an investigation that, as far as the homeowner knew, was cancelled. The drive up was nice, the team got to spend several hours getting to know each other better and trying to determine how the Garmin GPS thought we were off-road. (Turns out the highway was recently redone.) When we got to Paragould we discovered that the home was not in the middle of the road as the Garmin suggested, nor was it on the immediate left or right hand side of the road. This frustration was compounded by the fact that I thought it would be cute to record my own voice as the voice of the GPS, so it grew exhausting hearing my voice say “Recalculating” over and over as we drove back and forth on the highway dodging a barrage of bugs and snakes. Seriously, it was like a biblical plague, and you should see the size of the bugs up there. Mothra was lodged in the grill of my car and every time it flapped its wings my car would pull to the right.
We were about an hour late for the investigation at this point and the fact that the homeowner had not contacted me set up a red flag. I said, “They probably canceled, The Hogs are playing tonight after all.”
I was finally able to pull over and call the homeowner who confusedly advised me they had cancelled but never got a call back. I politely thanked them then made the first tweet of the night. “Investigation canceled per homeowner request” and I, along with my team, made the three-hour drive back to Little Rock.
I tell this story, not because any of us were angry, we weren’t, but to stress that paranormal investigations are never as they appear on television. They don’t show these SNAFU’s, but I care enough to share them with you. Mistakes happen, we learn from them, and we move on. My regret is that I did not get a chance to see the turn out at the monthly meeting which was held on the same night as our drive to Paragould. Alan said it was quite a turnout with several eager and new people.
So, to those new folks who will be joining the group, welcome and be prepared. Things often go off without a hitch, but you never know when a perfect storm of small gaffes will result in you heading out for an investigation that has been cancelled.