The Gnomestead

High Weirdness, Strange Animals, Thin Places


SUMMER 2011-2012

There’s a punk house near the evergreen campus in Olympia. Once called the Gnomestead, the property is situated along a semi-rural road, sandwiched between a rock quarry and a stretch of wetland. The the backyard was basically at the edge of a swamp.
I lived here for a year, between summer 2011-2012.
While I saw a lot of things that just didn’t make sense, Here’s a few that are easier to describe:

RED ORBS. (Spring 2012)
Down the street (20th ave) was a corner store where we often visited for beer and cigs. One night, a group of five of us made our way from the house looked ahead and noticed two bright red lights, similar to Aviation lights on buildings. They were soundlessly moving in sync, paired together maybe 30 feet apart in the distance, quickly drifting downward past the treeline ahead. We all saw it, and just shrugged.

WHISPERS (Winter 2011)
About a dozen people lived in in the house, so there was usually someone there. One afternoon, after work, I came home to grab something before going elsewhere. I called out but it was apparently empty. I passed through the second kitchen where there was a makeshift bed in the corner, hidden behind hanging tapestries/fabrics where someone was couch-surfing. As I passed it on the way to my room, I heard a feminine voice whisper “HE’S STILL HERE”. I thought it was said couch-surfer’s girlfriend, and I had interrupted them. I called out their names, but no answer. I stood there a moment, then felt compelled to move the veil out of the way and of course, nobody was there.

SCRATCHING. (Winter 2011)
My room was an extension with a door that went straight into the backyard, and no insulation on the outerwall, so it was cold in winter. One night, I started hearing scratches in the corner wall where my bed was fixed. At first I assumed Rats, but there was a particular cadence and insistence to the sounds unlike chewing or burrowing. It seemed more like…large fingernails scratching the outer side of the wall, at about head height. It kept getting louder and I got a weird feeling like it was trying to get my attention. I finally went outside to the other side of the corner wall, just to see if i could spot the source. I saw nothing, but the scratches ceased immediately.

BIG BLACK CATS (Summer 2011)
While this wasn’t something that happened directly to me, the timing was uncanny. One person who was camping in the backyard told me that on the way to his tent one night, he saw a large black cat, like a panther, cross his path and stop. It glanced at him with “shining eyes” before darting into the swamp at yard’s edge.
Another night, a week or so later, I was walking with a small group for another trip to the corner store. This time, a friend exclaimed suddenly “did anyone else see that huge cat just run across the street back there??” Nobody else did, and again we just kept walking.
The weird thing was, at the time I was reading a book by Patrick Harpur which mentioned anomalous encounters with big black cats and dogs with “Shining eyes”. If I recall, the Forward to that book claimed the act of reading the book would cause some of the descriptions to start happening around the reader.

WHITE ORB (Spring 2012)
Some friends and I were sitting on the lawn around noon, on a sunny day with a few clouds. I was sitting on an old wooden dining chair. The same friend who saw a large cat run across 20th ave suddenly exclaimed, “that cloud looks like a giant mouse cursor!”
we all looked and sure enough, there was a stratus cloud in an Isosceles shape, with sharp boundaries. I noticed that next to the “point” there was a small white spherical shape. We couldn’t tell if it was a planet (Venus?) or a closer, rounded object in the stratosphere. Whatever it was, moments after I began staring at it, my rickety chair suddenly shattered under my weight. When I looked back at the spot with the object, it was just gone.

I experienced other odd things around West Olympia. The town is supposedly situated on a vortex.

Submitted by Hernandez