This incident is not scary. But it throws open some questions for those who are doing research in this field and are keen to actually witness the hauntings. This took place in Maharashtra, India in a town of medium size.
There is a very old well near the campus of Agriculture College. It is at least 150 years old and still has some water but mostly unusable. The road that passes from around a few meters from the well is not in much use. Only students and sales staff for fertilizer companies nearby use that road. A friend of mine, who has taken up a rather low paying job of a travelling salesperson, was coming back to his hostel at around 1am. As he approached the well he saw a man of seventy plus, drawing water from the well and taking a bath. There was something unnatural about the man. The clothes lying near him were very old fashioned and one could make that out even in the dim moonlight. Also my friend was surprised to see someone taking bath as the water was too dirty and was not used. As he got closer to the well, the man disappeared and there were no traces of anyone taking a bath. But he felt no fear, nor did he get any uneasy or unnatural feeling near the well.
I believed my friend. He was not the type who would lie or imagine things. I asked around. This scene had been witnessed before as well but very rarely. A somewhat incoherent story that came out was like this.
In 1891 a very old women in her nineties died a natural death due to old age. Her son was seventy-four as in those days women used to marry before seventeen and generally gave birth to their first child in year or so. The son himself was not too well and suffered from asthma. In those days there was no relief medicines as such and it was a miracle that the man had managed to live for so long in the first place. He had not married and was devoted to his mother. He insisted he would do all the last rites at the time of cremation. He did that as well but while coming back from the cemetery his condition deteriorated.
In Hinduism all those who visit the cemetery are supposed to take bath before they enter the house. The son also wanted to do the same but his relatives did not allow him. He was taken home in a semi conscious state where he continued to insist that unless he takes a bath, the soul of his mother would not rest in peace. The man died in the morning and after that he was seen occasionally, near the well doing something, which he was not allowed to do at that time.
I was very keen to witness the scene myself. Walking down that road past mid night was not a problem at all because I stayed only half a mile away. So I tried walking past the well at odd hours. There was nothing scary about that road. It was lonely but a peaceful one. I did not see anything near the well during all those nights. Using whatever little I knew about astrology, I tried auspicious nights, inauspicious nights, full moon nights and nights with no moon. Generally these are the days when there is more activity and if you have the ability to "see" things then you can do that. Nothing worked. I tried being present for the cremations of the people I knew very remotely as long as it took place in the cemetery nearby. I then walked past the road on purpose but still no "luck".
I questioned my friend about that night. Did he do anything specific that he remembered, during that day or night? No. It was a very normal day he told me. He was late because he was tallying his monthly statements of sales and revenue. It took him time and hence he was coming late.
The family of priests that looked after the rituals have been doing that for last few generations. They had the date of the record since 1870 and could easily find the day when the old woman had died. The date was only two months away. I waited and tried on that night as well and did not see anything.
Some six months had passed now and the incident was fading away from my memory. I was on the verge of giving up. But before doing so I happened to come across my Guru to whom I briefly narrated the incident. He told me that I was looking at this from completely wrong angle. He did some calculations, gave me a date and told me to go near the well past midnight on that day. He also told me to throw few white flowers taken from a certain temple, two lemons, a tender coconut instrumented by mantra and told me to pray near the well for uplifting on the suffering souls. I did exactly that.
On the given date, I went near the well, and managed to see the haunting and it did not disappear when I went near it. I could very clearly see the man who looked very very ill. Each breath was difficult for him and the movement pouring water over his head from the bucket was making him almost breathless. He looked at me only once in a very vacant sort of way. I must say even then there was no fear. Not because of my courage but because I was indeed afraid but I think there was no evil as such in the haunting in the first place. I then turned to the well and did as I was told and then went ahead without looking back. I could hear a very soft rustling like sound in the background but did not know what it was.
I think the haunting stopped after that but I will not be able to say that for sure. I asked my Guru several times as to why I was wrong and what mistake I was doing. He just smiled and never told me that.
There was something that I was missing in this. Perhaps you all can figure out. At least I am stumped and for me it will be a mystery forever.