Where strange fact and stranger fiction collide
My views on the paranormal are as well documented as anything about me here in DCotU (except maybe about the fact that I live on a goat farm) I am both Mulder and Scully. I want to believe, but well the rational part of my brain just want turn off when it comes to anything supernatural. Even a woman seemingly disappearing before my eyes doesn’t make me a believer.
But that doesn’t mean I avoid the preternatural. Much like the great materialist H.P. Lovecraft, my skepticism allows me free reign of the occult in my creative writing. And the bizarre part of my brain that collects useless trivia has absorbed a near encyclopedia on the weird, Fortean and unworldly.
Also I don’t think that everyone who reports bumping into the non-Earthly are frauds or crazies. (Well some are but a significant potion of everything includes frauds and crazies) People who recount Fortean events are experiencing something, something real to them and something life changing. But what it was might not be what they think it is.
So it not surprising that those who know me well see and recognize this aspect of my personality. This Christmas my Aunt Louise gave me a book entitled Tomes of Terror. A collection of ghostly incidents in libraries and book stores. Two of my favorite things books and the occult. If you think about it books and ghost go together like some kind of eerie Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. Books are a moment of thought from the past manifesting itself in our mind and hearts in the present. Isn’t that what ghosts re supposed to be?
Canadian author Mark Leslie describes where the unworldly and the places books are kept intersect. You can really feel his love for books, libraries, bookstores and bibliophiles show through. He will spend pages describing the architecture of unique library but the actually supernatural event will only get a few paragraphs. But that isn’t a bad thing. His love for the printed word is contagious.
One story however really took hold of my imagination. It took place in Bob’s Beach Books in Lincoln City Oregon. Employee Diana Portwood was setting at a desk where it gave her clear view of everyone coming and going into the stores one available entrance. An older concretively dressed couple came in and explained they were looking for the stores portal to Lemuria. And that they had followed the energy to this book store and was sure the portal was at Bob’s, maybe under the store’s staircase.
Diana let the couple explore the store, but they never came out! If they had left through the door they would have to of walked right past her. They seemed physical and well mannered, and not crazy (except for of course the insistent that the store contained an extra-dimensional gateway to a lost civilization). And in the two years since the incident she has never seen them again.
One of the reasons why I love this story is I have always been fascinated by the concept of Lemuria. It was originally a scientific theory. Back in the Nineteenth century Darwinist Philip Scalter was disturbed that there seemed to be Lemur fossils in both Madagascar and India but none in the lands between the two areas. And the reason it isn’t there now is that it somehow sank into the ocean. His (pre-Plate tectonics) explanation was that there had to be a land mass between India and Madagascar that he called Lemuria.
It was a reasonable explanation with the knowledge of the time and got some acceptance in the scientific community. Eventually it was proved wrong and would have disappeared to where all the other good guess of science go when proven wrong, except for one woman Helena Blatvasky.
Blatvasky is the grandmother of the Theosophical wildfire of the mid to late nineteenth century and by default the modern new age movement. She claimed that the ancient Mahatmas taught her of the Lemrians who were large half mammals and half insects that laid eggs. They were pure and childlike but destroyed because of their impure sexual relationships with animals. Over a century other paranormal writers wrote about Lemuria until it became the second best known sunken ancient civilization, right after Atlantis.
To me the crooked pathway that started with a natural scientist trying to make sense of his world, that eventually lead to the staircase in a costal Oregon book store is fascinating. So what happened two years ago at Bob’s Beach Books? Assuming that the story wasn’t made up to draw in book buyers (and I have no reason to believe it was) then the obvious answer is Diana Portwood didn’t see the couple, and since they didn’t find what they were looking for never had reason to comeback. Mark Leslie suggest maybe they were spirits still looking for the paranormal after their worldly existence was over. Honestly I would love it turned out they found exactly what they were looking for. No matter what the answer is I am thinking it might be worth a road trip to the coast.