Friday, April 25, 2008
Mathews is well known for its unspoiled beaches, and one beach in particular is well known for its ghosts.
Haven Beach, also recently dubbed Festival Beach (although nobody ever calls it that, even though many "festivities" which might be considered festivals occurred there, such as Senior Skip Day in high school, when John A. drank so much grain alcohol that he passed out, belly up, on the beach until the high tide nearly took him out into the bay), lies at the end of a very long, winding road that snakes through what is called Old House Woods.
I have a picture of Old House Woods and the long windy road. But I have no idea how to upload more than one picture, and besides it takes a week to upload one picture, so I've opted for a view of the beach and the Chesapeake Bay.
There are many legends about Old House Woods and Haven Beach, and all of them involve ghosts. Some say that pirates buried treasure there a long time ago, and some people claim to see a ghost ship sailing through the air, presumably searching for the treasure.
I will never forget a Come Here by the name of Hayden. Hayden was, shall we say, different. He was from another country and had an interesting accent. He was also WIDE OPEN as they say around here, meaning that he enjoyed one or fourteen beers on a regular basis. Hayden told me that one night he and another girl were down Haven Beach, sitting in the car. I'm sure they were probably sewing a quilt or discussing the next day's Sunday School lesson, or something nice like that. Anyway, all of a sudden he saw people dressed in what he described as "old timey" clothing. (He not only had a neat accent, he was very deep.) He said they wore ruffled shirts, long jackets, and boots, and they were heading towards the beach, which happened to be where his car was. Here comes the good part: Hayden told me that one of the men approached his car; he rolled down his window and TOUCHED one of these mysterious figures. He said the hand was as cold as ice. No words were exchanged, and the figures kept on walking.
There are several morals to this story:
1. Mathews has some beautiful, unspoiled beaches.
2. Mathews has some old legends that are amazingly consistent through the decades.
3. Mathews is home to some of the craziest lunatics that ever walked on the face of this planet.