Quarantining With a Ghost? It's Scary
It started with the front door.
Adrian Gomez lives with his partner in Los Angeles,
where their first few days of sheltering in place for the coronavirus pandemic proved uneventful.
They worked remotely, baked, took a two-mile walk each morning and refinished their porcelain kitchen sink.
But then, one night, the doorknob began to rattle "vigorously," so loud he could hear it from across the apartment.
Yet no one was there.
In mid-April, Mr. Gomez was in bed when a nearby window shade began shaking against the window frame so intensely —
despite the fact that the window was closed,
an adjacent window shade remained perfectly still, the cats were all accounted for,
and no bug nor bird nor any other small creature had gotten stuck there —
that Mr. Gomez thought it was an earthquake.
"I very seriously hid myself under the comforter, like you see in horror movies, because it really did freak me out," he said.
Now, though neither he nor his partner noticed any unexplained activity at home before this,
the couple can "distinctly" make out footsteps above their heads.
No one lives above them.
"I'm a fairly rational person," said Mr. Gomez, who is 26 and works in I.T. support.
"I try to think, 'What are the reasonable, tangible things that could be causing this?'
But when I don't have those answers, I start to think, 'Maybe something else is going on.'"
They're not alone …possibly in more ways than one.
For those whose experience of self-isolation involves what they believe to be a ghost,
their days are punctuated not just by Zoom meetings or home schooling,
but by disembodied voices, shadowy figures, misbehaving electronics, invisible cats cozying up on couches,
caresses from hands that aren't there and even, in some cases — to borrow the technical parlance of "Ghostbusters" —
free-floating, full-torso vaporous apparitions.
Some of these people are frightened, of course.
Others say they just appreciate the company.