Come hither, my friend
Finger waves whisper to me
I move so I live. ~Froggie
© Chris Webber
She let go. Without a thought or a word, she let go.
She let go of the fear.
She let go of the judgments.
She let go of the confluence of opinions swarming around her head.
She let go of the committee of indecision within her.
She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons.
Wholly and completely, without hesitation or worry, she just let go.
She didn’t ask anyone for advice.
She didn’t read a book on how to let go.
She didn’t search the scriptures.
She just let go.
She let go of all of the memories that held her back.
She let go of all of the anxiety that kept her from moving forward.
She let go of the planning and all of the calculations about how to do it just right.
She didn’t promise to let go.
She didn’t journal about it.
She didn’t write the projected date in her Day-Timer.
She made no public announcement and put no ad in the paper.
She didn’t check the weather report or read her daily horoscope.
She just let go.
She didn’t analyze whether she should let go.
She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter.
She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment.
She didn’t call the prayer line.
She didn’t utter one word.
She just let go.
No one was around when it happened.
There was no applause or congratulations.
No one thanked her or praised her.
No one noticed a thing.
Like a leaf falling from a tree, she just let go.
There was no effort.
There was no struggle.
It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad.
It was what it was, and it is just that.
In the space of letting go, she let it all be.
A small smile came over her face.
A light breeze blew through her. And the sun and the moon shone forevermore…
~Reverend Safire Rose
Olalla Cemetery, Kitsap County, Washington
The Olalla Cemetery, located on the Gig Harbor Peninsula just over the Pierce County Line in Kitsap County, sits high on a hill overlooking a small inlet in Puget Sound. It was established, according to early records, at a meeting of the electors of School District 17 on 2 Feb 1901, and consists of one and one-half acres. The cemetery was abandoned in 1930 and there have been no burials in it since that date. It is a pioneer cemetery, overgrown and seemingly forgotten, with many stones tipped and broken or completely lost. Amongst the tilting headstones are pipe markers topped with red paint.
It is said this is the cemetery where the victims of Starvation Heights are laid to rest. It is also said that the markers represent where headstones of the victims used to be, but popularity and/or vandalism compelled them to replace the stones with the poles. I have seen nothing to confirm that story, however. There are a lot of these markers and are very difficult to count because the cemetery is laid out in such a rambling manner. Overgrowth was also a factor and I stopped counting when I got to 40.
The old Olalla cemetery has a fascinating past. I read the book Starvation Heights when I first moved to the area and have wanted to go explore this particular area since.
Story of Starvation Heights and Linda Hazzard
Because of the tragic nature of the story, many people believe this cemetery is haunted and it is listed on several paranormal sites.
I found it nothing but peaceful. It is not far from the road (150 yards or so) so you can hear the occasional car going by but the setting of the cemetery itself is quite tranquil. I saw a previous youtube video from 2011 that was slightly different from my photos and video. We had a recent windstorm earlier this year 2014 and it completely uprooted one of the larger trees which in turn lifted a burial sites/marker and narrowly missed a few others.
The site of Dr. Hazzard’s home is not far from the cemetery. The hospital and surrounding buildings have been torn down, unfortunately. I find it almost criminal when such fascinating pieces of history are deliberately destroyed. There are people who live in the home but they do not want to be bothered and it took me about 15 minutes (and I have years of online investigative experience) before I found the address.
The cemetery is public. But boy howdy, they don’t make it easy to find. Several websites have misleading directions. In the interests of accuracy I will be providing accurate directions along with pictures of the entrance. If you are the type of person who is going to be vandalizing a cemetery, this is one of these few occasions that I hope the cemetery is indeed haunted and the ghosties will take a bite out of your disrespectful derriere if you try to disturb the peace. Honor the past, folks. It is the right thing to do.
Here is a map. The trail is right off Olalla Valley Road. If you are meandering around Orchard Avenue you are in the wrong place. Also, if you hit Al’s Market and the bridge that goes over the inlet you have gone too far.
You will hike up 150-200 feet in an upward SE direction before arriving at the cemetery.
Peaceful Ambient Scenes from the Cemetery
About the Castle and its Hauntings
Manresa Castle was originally completed in 1892 as the home of Charles and Kate Eisenbeis. Charles Eisenbeis was a prominent member of early Port Townsend (He was the first mayor), when the port was the most active in the Pacific Northwest. The twelve inch thick walls of his thirty room mansion were made of brick from Charles Eisenbeis’s own brickworks. Locals came to call the building “Eisenbeis Castle.” In 1902 Charles Eisenbeis died, and the mansion was left empty when Kate remarried.
In 1925 an attorney bought the property and made it a vacation house for nuns who are teaching students in Seattle. However, this did not work out quite well and the castle became a training college for Jesuits. In 1927 it was purchased by Jesuits who turned it into a training college and renamed it Manresa Hall. It is the Jesuits who built the large extension to the original building and covered the brick walls of the original section to keep it more in line with the new wing. In 1968 the Jesuits left and it became a hotel.
There are reports that hotel’s rooms 302, 304 and 306 are frequented by two resident ghosts. There is reportedly a monk who hung himself in the castle’s attic. To this day, people can still hear the footsteps of the monk in the attic. The other ghost is that of a young lady who had been waiting for her beloved to return from war. When she heard the news that her beloved died in war, she threw herself out of the window and fell to her death.
In the café, which was once the chapel, drinking would spontaneously explode even when they are on the hands of servers. Empty glasses would also turn upside down on their own.
We stayed in 314. The hotel personnel were really great about accommodating my request to see the special places of the hotel for my blog. I asked about the basement “dungeon” area and was told it was completely converted to a laundry for the hotel.
This was a very fun visit, and very reasonably priced. We got a coupon to return for half price so we will be back!