This story started as a reply to Phillip Kafka's recent post about "50 King Street." I realized it just got too lengthy for a reply, so decided to make it a story. It never occurred to me before that it was a "haunting" or anything paranormal, but maybe it is?
PhillipKafka had talked about his time in an apartment with antiques that might've been visited by spirits. I have a lot of antique furniture, including wardrobe with mirror, 18th century linen press and others. I have an old secretery with glass doors next to my bed, and after my mom died I was having lots of dreams and woke one morning to find the glass doors open, sort of creepy. Otherwise have never experienced anything overt connected with my antiques. I do, as I'm polishing maybe, or dusting them or otherwise caring for them, sometimes get a sort of energy from them and always am aware of how I appreciate them and have sort of a "duty" to care for them to the best of my ability. It's all positive. And though I've probably seen too many movies, etc. About "haunted furniture" -- it does strike the imagination -- my home is a bright, cheery place decorated in a southern traditional "beachy" style, with these pieces interspersed (sorry for you all who're yawning at the decorating stuff, haha).
I also had an upright piano, bought in the '90s. It was a former player piano c. 1908, refinished, very pretty with a mirror installed where the music roll had been. The old piano collector/refurbisher in McDonough, Georgia had it out in his refinishing shed, a dreary, humid, barn-like place with many other pianos in various stages of work. I drove over an hour (I'm north of Atlanta), answering a small ad in the paper, and the old gentleman sold the instrument to me for about $150. I was a single mom, a widow, in my thirties and thought I hit the jackpot! My 8 year old daughter really wanted to learn (I wasn't musical and didn't realize I could've also bought a keyboard). Anyway, we got guys to move it cheap, and it became the center of our home and a happy thing... Daughter would play, practice and she and her friends would always mess around with it, being creative. A few years later, she could play Christmas carols and we'd all stand around and sing while she played, and it was perfect for putting decorations on top. The old player really held a place of honor in our family room.
When I re-married and we moved to our next home, daughter was a teen and decided to stop playing, so the heavy piece stayed in our drive-under basement storage room. At one point there was a sofa stored on top of it. One night, in the very middle of the night, my daughter woke up (in her room two stories directly above where the piano was stored) screaming, "MOM! MOM!" She swore she heard the piano playing. I had remarried and had a new baby, so I'm sure I was just exhausted, but have a vague memory of maybe believing I heard it too, and my new husband (who also thinks he heard it) immediately grabbed a baseball bat and went down to investigate. The lid to the piano keys was closed, so it couldn't have been an animal or anything walking on top. He saw nothing else out of place.
I like to think it was just the piano, reminding us it was still there for whatever reason, however spooky or dreamlike. We lived there ten years, never using the piano. But when we moved in here to our forever home, the piano got back a new place of honor, right at the center of our home, even though our daughter had gone to college. Then we inherited my mom's baby grand, so we had two pianos! Eventually, we decided to get rid of the antique, and were in the process of trying to figure out how. At one point, I was going to give it to a young family whose kids wanted to learn, but that fell through. Then one Saturday, my husband and I were literally talking about it when a knock came on our door. A local church youth group was playing this game where they start with a pencil and have to go around and trade UP for objects larger or better. They currently had an old flat screen tv, did we have anything that worked for their game? Immediately, we looked at each other and said, "How about a piano?" We truly didn't think they could do it, but they said, "Oh, we have a truck!" They were thrilled! So 10 big teenage boys rolled the piano out and onto the truck. A couple of them could play, and they played it even as they were lifting it into the truck (which conveniently had a hydrolic lift) and it's now sitting in the church youth room (in the church where our babies had attended pre-school). It seemed the PERFECT place for our old piano, and I often believe it's what God had intended. Perhaps we were just the care-givers in between homes! Sorry to tell such a long story. I never even thought about personifying that piano, and had completely forgotten about the night we thought we heard it play, until PhillipKafka made me think of my antiques. Thanks for reading!