Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Home Vacation A ghostly getaway – Escalon Times

A ghostly getaway – Escalon Times

by Staff

We recently embarked on a delightful weekend getaway to Long Beach to celebrate my daughter’s 18th birthday, albeit a few months late due to a September birthday. Our schedules at that time were overflowing and finances tight as we geared up for the holiday season. Work deadlines loomed and life was, in a word, hectic.

When my daughter suggested visiting the Queen Mary for her birthday celebration, my gut reaction was to say no, but then it struck me that sometimes we need to break free from our daily grind for our own well-being. After all, we should be focusing on creating lasting memories rather than just earning a living – a notion we sometimes forget.

I proposed a compromise: postponing the trip to February, thinking it would offer us a reprieve post-holidays. Surprisingly, February arrived in a blink, and despite the ongoing chaos, we decided to go ahead with the trip. It turned out to be a fantastic decision.

We found a charming Airbnb near the beach, conveniently close to various amenities. We spent Saturday visiting a renowned pizza place, rummaging through thrift shops – where my daughter scored a Beatles record – and our night involved dining at Shoreline Village followed by the famed Queen Mary tour.

I highly recommend the Queen Mary tour. It’s a must-do, especially if you’re drawn to the supernatural. Opt for the paranormal night tour like we did; it’s fascinating. Our guide was excellent, providing a mix of education and entertainment, and it felt surreal to seemingly travel back in time to the ship’s glory days.

The Queen Mary is recognized as one of America’s top ten haunted venues, and it lives up to that title. There’s an unmistakable energy that settles on your shoulders upon boarding, intensifying as you delve into the ship’s depths. Some areas brought discomfort, others joy.

To quell your curiosity, yes, we did encounter something. My daughter witnessed an apparition, confirmed as a common vision by our guide, and felt a tug on her cape when no one was close by. Simultaneously, I detected a strong scent of roses, a known ghostly fragrance on the ship, alongside cigar smoke.

Oddly enough, our ghost hunting apps malfunctioned on our phones, unlike others on the tour. Despite multiple attempts to fix them, they refused to cooperate. My daughter tried a different app, which kept displaying the word “Stay.”

As we left, we respectfully asked the spirits to remain aboard – we preferred not to bring any home. The trip was rejuvenating, and I’m thankful my daughter pushed for it.

Remember, life’s essence is in the memories we create, not just the paycheck we earn. Now, it’s your turn – go out and make some memories of your own – these are the moments we should live for.


Kim Van Meter is a former full-time reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Escalon Times and The Riverbank News; she continues to provide a monthly column. She can be reached at [email protected].

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