In fact, all of these sites and tours claim to be in very active and haunted places and all them failed to deliver any ghostly activity that I would consider to be significant or particularly memorable. Now I am not saying that these sites aren't actually haunted, many if not all of them probably are, but I myself failed to have what I would consider to be a significant ghostly encounter at tours of this nature; that was until this week.
Seth had desperately wanted to do a ghost investigation for his 17th birthday and we were all booked in to do just that on his birthday in January. However, the God's did not smile upon this and not only did the tour guide get Covid-19 and have to isolate, but the actually site that we were going to investigate got totally flooded the week prior to us attending and had to close for refurbishment. Seriously, if that's not a sign that you're not meant to go then I don't know what is really. Anyway, we had to withdraw and reschedule for a future date and not wanting to leave it too long after Seth's birthday to get the ghost hunting rolling, I booked the two of us in to a ghost hunting experience and investigation session at the Blackwood pub last Wednesday night.
The Blackwood pub is a small venue about 15 minutes outside of Ballan in Victoria. It was once a morgue for the graveyard that is adjacent to the venue and it's history is speckled with both tragedy and mystery which our guide and host "Dolly" informed us of whilst we enjoyed a hearty pub meal before embarking on two hours of ghost investigating.
Armed with an array of ghost detecting equipment (that had been kindly supplied by our host) and an extensive knowledge of the history of the venue, we were allowed free reign to the venue and graveyard to explore at will. And I am not going to lie, I was not really expecting to experience anything much and had pretty much agreed to do the tour with Seth for a few shits and giggles. And how wrong I turned out to be.
I can say without any hesitation that the Blackwood pub is haunted, very haunted. And I am not sure if it was the combination of people that were in attendance that evening, if it was just the right pace at the right time or if this place is always running this hot but both Seth and I felt and saw a lot of odd phenomena that night. From scary shouting ghost box messages, flashing lights, EVP activity, orbs caught on camera, sensations of feeling compressed, dizzy, disorientated and listing from side to side to photos that appear to depict full apparitions, unseen movements and even ghostly faces - we had it all going on. Other people in the group of around 20 people claimed to being touched and grabbed, which thankfully Seth and I did not experience and one poor woman was even struggling to stay upright throughout the night. It was weird beyond all explanation and was easily the most significant and active ghost investigation tour/experience that I have ever been involved in.
This was both good and bad. Good because if you are going to invest your time and energy in to doing a ghost hunting tour then you do want all of the bells and whistles and this certainly delivered on those fronts. However, it was also kind of bad because when you are around that much activity you need to make sure that nothing is latching on. I had to burn a shit tonne of sage and Palo Santo and do lots of white light meditations after the effect to make sure that nothing came home with us or had latched on to us. And I have never felt compelled to be that thorough when I have been doing a ghost investigation with a tour group before because they just aren't usually that active or significant.
So would I recommend doing a ghost investigation of Blackwood pub? Yes, I would. But as I said before it is always hard to say just what it is that makes these kind of supernatural experiences amplify, because in all sincerity I have no doubt that someone else could do this tour and experience nothing at all. I personally do think that Blackwood pub is haunted and I do think that there are active spirits at the venue. Can I guarantee an experience if you go? Of course not, but when you stack it against the other ghost related tours that I have been on, it's the best experience that I have had in a tour group thus far and that is worth noting.
Even if you are a total sceptic, at worst you'll still enjoy a decent pub meal and a little intrigue and a bit of local history. At best, like Seth and I, you'll be shocked and surprised by the levels of activity and creeped out for days to come about what you just experienced first hand. I don't know why I like this kind of stuff so much, at heart I have always loved ghost stories and the unexplained and having had lots of supernatural and eerie experiences all on my own I suppose that it is just nice to have a shared experience with like minded others as well. It is not only affirming but also very bonding, and what's not to like about that?
Release Date: 2021
Running Time: 124 mins
Made for kids and playing out with as much youthful energy as The Goonies and enough sentimentality as any good Spielberg film, Ghost busters: Afterlife directed by Jason Reitman, delivers a simple and sweet supernatural tale that the whole family can enjoy together.
Egon Spengler, one of the original ghostbusters, passes away and leaves him weird home to his estranged family. Upon moving in, the youngest child of the family Phoebe discovers that Spengler is communicating with her from beyond the grave and is trying to warn her about an impending doom that lies ahead. A supernatural doom that consumed his entire life and now threatens the lives of everyone on the planet.
There are plenty of call backs to the original film for die hard fans and all of the original gang make appearances at some point during the movie, except of course for Harold Ramis who originally played Egon Spengler in the first Ghostbuster film and passed away in 2014; and there is a tribute to him at the end of the film. Along with the old Ghostbusting crew, the new recruits: Finn Wolfhard, McKenna Grace and Logan Kim are terrific here and Carrie Coon and Paul Rudd fill in the shoes of the supporting adults nicely as well.
I won't lie, it is a little sappy at times and super sentimental, but it is also a PG rated film, so it kind of needs to be. Ghostbusters: Afterlife is not a life changer, but it is wasn't a bad way to spend a couple of hours either.
FINAL SAY: I don't remember this job being so painful.
3 Chilli Peppers