In the summer of 2012, my family took a holiday to Brittany, in the north of France, and rented a caravan in a local site. Frankly, the site was beautiful, a nearby beach, nice sports facilities, a large pool and a brilliant restaurant. For the first few nights things were great. I slept well, had a good time during the day and was truly beginning to relax.
Then my younger brother, who was 6 at the time, began to say things that particularly unnerved us. One night we went to the bar for dinner, and began to watch the Euro 2012 final, a football match. Over dinner, conversation was flowing, and we began to debate whether death was really "it", or if you could carry on afterwards. My younger brother then told us that he believed you could go on after death. We all shot him a funny look, he rarely offered his opinion on anything, and on a subject like this we expected him to be terrified. But he sat in his chair, resolute as ever, and told us that he believed that.
When asked why he told us about the man he talked to last night. He said that the man had told him he was already dead, but he was not gone. My dad, quite a spiritual man by all accounts, probed him further. All my brother would say was that the man wore a top hat and a trench coat.
The next day we didn't mention it, and had all but forgotten. We had dinner outside the caravan, and my little brother got himself grounded, and my mum ordered him to his room. He refused. He told us he would go to any other room but his. My dad looked worried. He escorted my brother into the caravan and put him in my room. He looked uncomfortable coming back outside. It was a warm day, but Dad said he definitely felt a chill.
Being a fathers boy, when dad said he was sleeping in my brothers room, I jumped at the chance to join him. I took top bunk, he took bottom, and both of us fell asleep almost instantly. No man in the top hat.
When waking up in the morning, we noticed nothing askew. Over breakfast however, we became unnerved. Dad told me he dreamed he was drowning, as if he was deep under the water and he was folded up, limbs pinned to his chest. I had the same dream. It was at this stage we were unwilling to carry on in that caravan.
That day my gran, who is a devout Irish catholic, and had come on holiday with us and her husband, came for lunch. She reported a cold feeling from my brothers room, and told us to stay away from it. She knew nothing about our experiences in the caravan.
Although not particularly scary, this experience deeply unnerved us all, and I felt I had to share it.