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The Chocolate Shop Ghost

 

The old building had been a gas station prior to being remodeled into a candy store, by a prominent company. With the large, plate glass windows on three sides and the over large side door to what had once been the bay area and now served for deliveries, to me it still felt like a gas station. The fact that it hadn't been one in over 35 years, didn't matter. I'm guessing it didn't to the resident ghost either.

I started working there around 2004, mostly the night shift, and often alone. Because of the economy, business was often quite slow, as we were not a penny candy store but high end chocolates. It didn't take me long to figure out, even on nights I worked alone, I wasn't alone.

First, there were the feelings I got; that cob-webby tingling on the back of my neck and sometimes almost my entire body, accompanied by the feeling of being watched.

The only station the radio would stay tuned to was a country station. Literally, you could change the station, but within a few minutes it would dial itself back to the country one.

Now and then, you'd catch a whiff of oil and grease, accompanied by sounds of movement. Sometimes, I could swear I heard the sound of an air compressor.

As with most places I've worked at, I ended up keeping a few useful tools at the store, because I tend to be little miss fix it. I had my kit stored on a shelf below the phone, I'd go to get something and my kit would be missing. It always turned up in the same place - back in what had been the bay area, on the shelving where a mechanic would keep it. Hard to blame co-workers when it decides to transport itself, while you're the only one there. After a couple of months of this, I said "Ok, I'll keep it here - but no messing with it, ok?" They never moved again. Although if I left a tool laying out, I'd find it back in the kit.

The start of my shift overlapped the ending of another's shift. So for an hour or so, I wasn't alone. I was mildly surprised when co-workers started to confine in me they thought the place was haunted. Some of them as they were quitting. Not that anything bad had happened, they were just that unnerved by it. Some of the things they reported were sounds coming from the store room (old bay area), things moving from where they were left, boxes flying off the shelves, things of that ilk. We had one worker who adored rap music. Since she insisted on trying to play it, the radio kept unplugging itself. It was country or nothing.

I have to admit, the first time I heard what sounded like someone in the back, when I knew I was alone, had me going out the front doors, and circling the building checking to make sure the side bay door was indeed closed and locked. After that, I formed the habit of checking them before the other person left.

One night, working in the bay area putting away stock, I distinctly heard a male voice say "George, Ma'am." It was deep and country sounding.

I looked about, "Hello?" Nothing, but I was tingling like mad. "Unless you say different, I'm going to assume that's your name. Alright?" Still nothing. After that we just started referring to him as George. I never mentioned why I thought this was his name to my coworkers. If asked I'd just shrug and say, "Gotta call him something right?"

As I mentioned, I often worked alone at night, and sometimes someone would come in and they just would not feel 'right' to me, especially if they started asking odd questions, like if we had cameras, because they couldn't see any, or asking me if I wasn't afraid to be working all alone, if we had many customers that day. To me it felt as if they were fishing for information. We'd hear noise from the back room, as if someone was in the back. I'd smile sweetly and say, "Oh, I'm not alone. George is here." This was generally met with an "oh," and a fairly quick retreat on their part, if their 'concern' wasn't real. Otherwise they'd just finish up their small talk and move along. Thankfully that didn't happen often.

One afternoon I was working with another woman who truly believed we were haunted. Only she's the type who thinks all spirits are demons, and voiced her opinion that we simply MUST exorcise George from the building, before he showed his true colors by possessing one of us. At that moment a fearful toppling of boxes from the shelves could be heard. We both rushed to the area, and she gasped. There on the floor, several boxes had been arranged in the form of a cross, and there was the heavy smell of gas and oil in the air, in that one spot. We pretty much gaped at each other for what seemed a few minutes. I looked at her and said, "How many demons make the sign of the cross?" and started putting boxes back on the shelf. That was the last I saw of her, she never came to work again.

I decided it was time for George and I to have a heart to heart chat. In that respect, I felt the co-worker was right, he did need to cross over, at least be let known he could.

I'd done a bit of research and had learned that the previous building owner had been named George. For privacy reasons I won't divulge his last name. Apparently he had been married to the gas station, and had been considered a class A mechanic. The station had been his life. From what I gathered he had died back in the bay doing what he loved, working on a car.

I waited until after closing one night, and stood in the bay, talking to him. I reassured him that he had done nothing wrong, that I knew he had been a good man, but his job was done. I asked him if there was something he needed to be done, or if I could in any way help him. He had shown me he could be a good friend, protecting me from the two legged beast called man, and I would miss him, but he was free to go, if he wanted to, it was ultimately his choice. "But you really need to stop scaring my coworkers," I ended.

Things got quiet after that. The radio stayed tuned to whatever station you tuned in (except for rap). Boxes stayed where placed. Coworkers stopped mentioning weird stuff happening. But, when working alone, that country station would tune in and I'd feel that cob-webby sensation. I think George decided to hang around just a bit longer. Then one day, there was nothing. I believed he decided it was time to move on.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by yourghoststories.com. Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, valkricry, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

L_Melb (214 posts)
 
6 months ago (2018-08-11)
Thanks Val,
Must admit it didn't even occur to me until the end that you weren't talking about cooking gas (getting slow in my old age...)
Though the other gas you mentioned may hit someone when my brother becomes a ghost (yes, I have the luck of having 2 of those stereotypical older brothers)
Must admit it gives a new "flavour" to the saying "now we're cooking with gas"! 😜
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+1
6 months ago (2018-08-10)
L_Melb, Great to 'see' you!
Ah, that would be 'petrol' to you.
Out here, if you get cooking gas by the tankful, it's called propane. The type used for cooking and heating that comes through city lines is called gas, same as what we call the stuff we put in our cars. So I get the confusion. But, you know how we are across the big pond, we need to confuse you farther by also referring to a particular smelly body function as passing 'gas' - which I'm fairly sure nobody would want to work with let alone cook with.😳
L_Melb (214 posts)
+1
6 months ago (2018-08-10)
Hi val,
A lovely read as always. I do hope George found peace in the end!
I wanted to ask what may sound like a stupid question, when you say there was a smell of 'gas' do you mean "petrol" (as we call it) or the type of gas you get in cooking? I assumed it was the oven type until I remembered we live in different parts of the world!
Thanks for another great read 😊
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+1
7 months ago (2018-07-11)
Melda, and Cecil-XII,
Hope you don't mind my caboosing you two together.
Yes, I believe George was one of the good ones. I've been rather fortunate in that those I generally connect with (and prefer to talk about) were/are from that vein. Although, I do understand why people are afraid of them, and why most faiths teach that they're all demonic. Just think about it for a minute.
Intent, even from the living is not always clear, and it's widely accepted that evil/bad spirits are notorious liars - just like the living ones, imagine that! Much easier to take you over if you BELIEVE I'm your friend/Aunt Morticia/or such, and by the time you figure it out, it's just too late. Their grip on you is too tight. (Think about why people stay in abusive relationships.)
In my own PERSONAL opinion, the bad is more vampiric in wanting your energy (like blood) in order to be stronger. Some are even just bullies, and maybe they think it's funny to scare you. RC hit the nail on the head when he said, "there are spirits out there that want to possess and destroy us..." So, you need to be very careful in your dealings. Listen to your gut feelings, temper it with logic. Keep your faith strong, and your shields up.
Sorry about going off on a little tangent, but I just felt it was something I needed to say.
Cecil-XII (guest)
 
7 months ago (2018-07-10)
Oh, wow! Another friendly ghost! I love these kind of ghost stories. George sounded like a lovely chap, he was just doing his job, no harm intended.

I've always belived that ghosts are indeed benevolent. It's just if they are treated the wrong way or provoked or if they didn't have good lives... Then that's where you have a problem.

I suppose you can say George had good 'taste'. Haunting a chocolate shop.

Still, what a heartwarming story! I loved it!:)
Melda (9 stories) (1101 posts)
+1
7 months ago (2018-07-10)
Val - I know many people don't consider ghosts to be nice but every now and then you find people fortunate enough to have met one 😊

I love your story. It reminds me of my ghost, Vic, who has also now moved on. People couldn't understand that I was actually fond of the guy.

It didn't take George long to suss you out, so he was equally fortunate!

Regards, Melda
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+2
7 months ago (2018-07-09)
Thank you, Augusta. I must say, the look on her face was priceless! Although, my own probably mirrored it 😆.
AugustaM (4 stories) (807 posts)
+1
7 months ago (2018-07-09)
What a wonderfully special experience! George sounds like a real gentleman and a sweetheart! I have to say his stunt with the boxes to scare a little sense into your close-minded co-worker had me cheering for him ❤ I hope in life he got the love he seemed so able give and if reincarnation is real that he gets a good turn next time around.
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-06)
lady-glow,
I think he stayed there, because for him it was 'home', he was happiest there. From the stories I heard, folks sometimes just stopped to pass the time of day with him, and there were neighborhood ladies that would bring him home-cooked meals or baked goods now and then. But, yeah, I don't think I'd want to hang around my current place of employment either. Except maybe to haunt a few -ahem- *special* people, if you know what I mean. 😉😆
lady-glow (11 stories) (2287 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-06)
Valkricry - George sounds like such a sweet guy; it makes me sad to think that people would stay attached to their jobs after their passing... I will try to go visiting places when my time to do the 'transition' comes. I guess it all depends on the circumstances of their death?

Thanks for sharing this beautiful experience.
CuriousDee (8 stories) (630 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-02)
Val,

I know my mother nicknamed our 'George', but she said it was because he acted like a grumpy old man. I would beg to differ... Sometimes he's more than grumpy 😜

I wouldn't mind your George, he appeared helpful and just a generally good person. That's a lot of robberies in a small vicinity. No wonder George hung around! Go with your gut feeling, I'm sure you're right, he was just keeping an eye on things. It sounds like he approved of your presence too 😊

Dee
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+2
8 months ago (2018-07-02)
Rex, and Jubeele,
Thank you for the kind words.
Funny, I always said goodnight to George as I locked up for the night. Synchronicity at work I suppose 😉
valkricry (43 stories) (2998 posts) mod
+2
8 months ago (2018-07-02)
RC,
I'm sorry - didn't realize I needed a tissue warning for this one. 😉 You're words are too kind, thank you.

Dee,
Maybe so many ghosts are called George because it's always been a fairly popular boy's name?🤔 I believe your observation on that is correct, sure seems like a lot of them.
From accounts I've heard about George, from folks who knew him (funny how folks will reminisce with a stranger) he was a real 'good ol' boy'. Honest, hard working, and very protective of those he liked. Part of me wonders if that's why he stayed. First, out of curiosity out of what would happen to his station, and then when he saw mostly women worked there, he just hung around to make sure everything was alright, that they stayed safe.
Of course I don't KNOW that, but it feels right, like something he'd do in life. But something I do know is the store was situated on a corner between (across the street from) a check cashing place on one side, a restaurant on the other, and right across from a bank, and the area was in decline. In the 5 years I was there, each one saw robberies, and violence - the check cashing place almost monthly one year! But, we went unscathed. Never even broken into. I would (and sometimes still do) wonder if George had a hand in that.

Spockie,
Thanks for reading! I hope so too.
Rex-T (4 stories) (242 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-02)
Thanks Val,

I generally don't like surprises (must be getting older) but reading your story was a pleasant surprise. First time posters would benefit from reading this story and reflecting on their own narrative before publishing.

Having experienced something similar with Arthur, I always find other peoples' reaction and subsequent opinion fascinating when facing similar experiences.

Agree with the other posters, George was one of the good guys and deserved to be at rest.

Of course it is now in the 'favorite vault' to be read again when I'm feeling down.

Hey RC, you're ok to keep chopping those onions when you're reading experiences like this. 😁
Jubeele (17 stories) (740 posts)
+3
8 months ago (2018-07-02)
Loved this, Val. It reads like my favourite type of chocolate; a hint of bitter, yet sweet and lovely.

Good old George. I got the impression that he was what I'd call "a good workman" with a set routine and an established place for all his tools. Your kit was in his domain, hence it had to be kept in the right place, which was the bay. Great that he kept the tools back in the kit for you though. 😁

Can't fault his taste in music - never could relate to the appeal of rap either. I liked how protective George was of you and made his presence known when you had people with dubious intent coming into the store. But the Talk was timely after his display of temper that frightened off that co-worker. At the end of the day, it was probably the best thing for him.

"Good night! Good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, that I shall say good night until it be morrow." - William Shakespeare

Good night, George. Rest in peace. May tomorrow herald a brighter dawn. ❤
Spockie (8 stories) (183 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-01)
George actually sounded like a good friend to have around. I hope he found his way safely to the other side.
CuriousDee (8 stories) (630 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-01)
Oh Val, I had goosebumps reading this (the good ones). George sounds lovely. Have you noticed how many people refer to their resident ghost as George? I keep coming across that. My childhood ghost is also nicknamed George 😊

Regardless, I love this account, just a decent man who decided to keep an eye on his 'baby' in the afterlife. I hope George has found peace and moved on. Thank you for sharing Val, this is going in my favorites ❤

Dee
RCRuskin (8 stories) (498 posts)
+1
8 months ago (2018-07-01)
Onions. I am chopping onions. This one is going into my favorite stories; may be the last one I favorite because it is the best.

Your coworker is partly correct, on two points: there are spirits out there that want to possess and destroy us, and that George did eventually show his true colors.

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