Something really strange happened last night, at 2AM. Lately I haven’t been awake as late as 2AM, but last night I was, for various reasons. Â I was not even in bed, although I was going there soon. Â A train had just passed by. Â There are a couple houses and a road between here and the railway track, but when the heavy goods trains pass at their best speed, it still makes the house shake a little. Â I have gotten used to it, so it doesn’t wake me if I am already asleep, but I sure notice it when I’m awake. Â This was a pretty heavy one, so I consciously noticed.
Half a minute later, perhaps, I heard a single explosion, and the house jumped, but only once. Â It was not even like thunder, rolling over a distance. It was just one single BOOM, as if someone fired off a cannon nearby. Â But obviously people in this quiet neighborhood don’t have cannons.
I got up, put on clothes, checked the basement (nothing unusual there) and went out. I went as far as to the railway station, about five minutes walk, but nowhere did I see or hear anything unusual at all. Â If it had been that far away and still so loud, it would have had the whole neighborhood awake, but I was the only one around. Â There were no unusual sounds or sights or even smells. Well, there was a strange chemical smell when I passed the closest neighbor, but it had been there in the afternoon too, when I mowed the lawn, many hours before.
I went to bed eventually, and got up and it was daylight, but still nothing strange anywhere. Â I have just written it off by now.
Mostly in jest I thought perhaps it happened in the parallel world that my bathroom is connected to. You see, this house has a nice enough bathroom, considering that it is from around 1970. The tub is a bit cramped for me, but was probably ideal for the grandparent generation. Â Anyway, it is a nice bathroom except that I often hear voices there. Not in the bathroom itself, but just outside. Â However, one of the lawns is outside. When I check, there is no one there, and no one visible or audible around the neighbor’s house either. The voices sound very much like Norwegian, in the sounds and the tone, but I can never understand what they say. Â They are slightly distorted, so that I almost think I might understand it if they spoke a little more clearly, but it never happens.
If the voices are not enough, there are the smells. Â Now, we all know that bathrooms can smell. Â That is not what I am talking about. Â There are smells that don’t come from anything in my house. Â The strongest one is of turpentine or white spirit or some such. Â It happens some days and can last for hours. Â There is no such thing in the house that I know of. Â Sometimes it smells of flowers or perhaps some kind of shampoo or something with flower smell. Â None of mine are like that. Â It is not always the same, I think. It generally does not last as long as the turpentine smell though. Â The smell is generally not at the same time as the voices, though I won’t say it has never happened.
Most likely there is some way the plumbing is carrying sound (and smell) from one of the neighbors further away. Â I really doubt there is a parallel earth that is connected to ours through my bathroom, even though that would certainly explain it all. Â If so, I’m afraid they had a very bad night there. Â I will feel a slight jolt of relief when I next hear the voices outside, knowing that they are still alive… wherever they are.