Would You Live In A Haunted House?

The New York State Ghostbuster Law

We drove to Nyack to see the house on the right at the dead end street overlooking the Hudson River. It’s haunted. In 1991, a couple in contract to buy it, suddenly wanted their down payment returned when they learned the house had ghosts. They had to take the case to the New York Appellate Court which ruled in their favor. The case is known as Stambovsky v. Ackley And New York State laws now says that an owner has to disclose if a house is haunted. Not too many people know about the law or the house, except for real estate agents and law students.

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Our Visit to Laveta Place

A Mini Cooper convertible was parked in front of the house when we arrived, but it didn’t look like anyone was home so we took our picture in front and then walked across the street to a similar house that had a for rent sign. I walked up to knock on the front door but I could see through the window that the house was completely empty, except for a rocking chair. The wraparound porch has spectacular views of the Hudson River. We took our photo.

This empty house felt more haunted than the famous one. A former owner of the 1 Laveta Place home described the ghosts as two girls in 18th century hoop skirts and a small man in a red coat, which indicates a British soldier from that era.

No one was home in either of the houses at the end of this street when we visited, but it didn’t feel like we were alone. A case of nerves, maybe…? Or maybe not…

You might thing that buying a known haunted house would mean a discount. The house the law was written for is valued by Zillow.com at $2.2 million. The other house, the one in our Instagram post, is valued at $5.3 million. It’s much larger, modern and has a stone staircase leading to a tile and stone deck at the riverside!

Do you believe in ghosts?

A HuffPost/You.gov poll found that 43% of people in the United States believe in them. A Chapman University poll found 53% of their survey believe. The comments on my Instagram post were a mix. I imagine the four people who have bought the house in these past 28 years didn’t believe in ghosts, but they didn’t keep the house for very long. This is a house by the water and water is a portal for spirits. That’s why bridges are often rumored to be haunted.

This entire Hudson Valley is filled with rumors and stories of ghosts. From the porch in my photo, you can see the town of Sleepy Hollow, the setting in the famous Legend of Sleepy Hollow! written by Washington Irving in 1820. The famous haunted scene of the story is of the headless horseman on a bridge!.

Last Halloween, we visited Washington Irving’s home for a Halloween tour (Instagram post just above). If you had strong binoculars, you would be able to see the Nyack homes acrosss the river.

Spooky Photo

Are ghosts real? That’s for you to decide…

My grandmother always told me, “Don’t be afraid of the dead, be afraid of the living.”

I’ll leave you with this last photo taken during a visit to someone’s house. The window is too high for this to be a person in the window.

It sure looks like Coco is trying to alert us to something…. In this case, there was no one in the window! It’s just a shadow of a wooden post!


Sunday Stills is a great inspiration for new blog posts! I often come up with ideas I would never have thought about. Come join us!


Would You Stay In This Unusual Lighthouse Hotel:

Saugerties Lighthouse: This Hotel Is Like Nothing You’ve Ever Imagined!

Drunk With… The Emotion Of The Moment! France Wins The World Cup 2018!

Our sunset cruise on the River Seine in Paris was at the same time as the World Cup semi-final between Belgium and France.

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It was a perfect hour for a river cruise as we got to enjoy each phase of the sunset, the golden hour, the pink clouds… and as we passed restaurants along the river, we could see the large screen televisions and hear the people cheering on France. We heard France’s first goal from the boat and we felt the excitement of the people of Paris! Travel is at its best when you feel you are part of a place!

At the end of the cruise, the streets around the Eiffel Tower were wild with honking horns and people wearing the French flag as capes. Our metro ride back to the hotel was exciting and a little scary when the train stopped in the tunnel and the power went out. There was very little air and it was very hot!

It wasn’t all of Paris in euphoria. We had to transfer to another train and this one was very calm.

The Final Game: France vs. Croatia

We arrived in Montpellier and went to the beach late that afternoon and when the game begin, the restaurant on the boardwalk was absolutely full. We asked for a table for dinner to watch the game but they weren’t serving dinner. The cooks and waiters were watching the game too.

We drove back to the hotel, changed and ran into the plaza up the block where each restaurant had a crowd of people in front, cheering on France.

The streets were lined with police vans and riot police. My Insta-friend Emma (@blugalen) from Florence, Italy, started messaging me through Instagram, excited that I would experience the European soccer euphoria up close! My other Insta-friend Mai (@lotus_jazz) from Paris was messaging me the night before during the Bastille Day celebrations. I will never forget how they thought of me at these moments!

All of the tourists watched from a distance in the plaza, a little concerned about how people in the town would react.

We still hadn’t eaten but now it was impossible. The restaurants were completely full to capacity with people getting very drunk. We found a tiny supermarket which was also full of people buying wine and beer. The streets were a little frightening. The next morning, part of the hotel window was shattered.

It was fun to be part of the moment but I also loved this Croatian team. The following day, someone sent me a video about the Croatian players who were refugees. I love watching the exciting World Cup games but in sports, the human stories are always my favorite part.

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How easily can I influence you?

Sunday Stills: Summer, or Kissing Bats (Bad Idea)

On July 3rd, three adventurer Youtubers died in action. When 29 year old Megan Scraper slipped and fell into Shannon Falls in Canada, her two companions jumped in to try to rescue her.

Their group, High On Life, presented this emotional eulogy:

For me, the deaths were tragic but not sad. They lived the lives they wanted and the two companions didn’t hesitate to risk their lives for her. True adventurous spirits.

Sadder is a colleague who hates her job, dreams of moving from expensive NYC to a simpler life in a small town… but her unemployed husband (for three years) doesn’t want to. He wants to stay near his family.

So every day she goes to work, where the supervisors pressure her to do a better job, and she counts down the years she has left in the job (Eight!!!)

Jobs tie you down but maybe you love your job. Children tie you down but having them is a special part of life. There are always trade-offs. I’m not saying to live like these High On Lifers. I don’t live that way. Just make sure your trade-offs aren’t making you miserable.

I never heard of these Youtubers before the news story came out. Have you? Here’s a video where one from the group kisses a bat:

Summer theme connection

Summer is a time to get out and enjoy life. NYC is too cold for me so this will be my last year here. Until then, I’ll enjoy it while I can.

Every Sunday evening, Gantry Park has tango 💃

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I also enjoyed this street of restaurant tables:

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(I wrote this blog post entirely on my phone at the airport 😉👍)

Sunday Stills: Tourism

On Instagram, I came across a quote that I loved so much, I actually bought an audiobook about Mark Twain called “Around the World with Mark Twain”. The quote is:

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

I’m glad I bought the book because it’s very interesting, but I discovered that Mark Twain never said this.


I just read an article about an Instagrammer with over 100K followers who was caught using stock photos, sometimes adding himself to the photo or making other slight changes. The Instagrammer says he has receipts for all of the stock photos he used, but it’s disappointing to know he was posting fake experiences.


Before we went to Turkey last summer, everyone tried to warn us not to go. ISIS was going to kidnap us. When we arrived in Istanbul, the customs area was deserted.

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We enjoyed Istanbul so much and felt so safe that we go be back one day. I saw Turkish Insta-friends (women) who dressed Wow! Very sexy! (Look up: Nazila and Hatice.) I saw women dressed in all ways all over Istanbul. I had conversations and subtle interactions with women in burkas who made me feel very welcome in their city. (You can read about my experiences here.)


When we booked tours in Mexico City and Michoacán a few years ago, we were alone with the tour guide. Tourists were so afraid to visit Mexico that we had our own private tour! Two weeks after we left Michoacán, an navy admiral was ambushed and killed on the highway. (You can read our Michoacán post here!)


Before our 2016 Guatemala trip, Dan told me that www.insightcrime.org located our hotel in a zone where La Marasalvatrucha, the infamous drug gang, operate.

Also, we were planning a trip to Tikal to see the Mayan pyramids. But Tikal is in a tropical zone, and the Zika virus scare had just begun. Some airlines had announced that they were willing to cancel bookings to the most dangerous destinations.

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We saw this billboard in Guatemala City: “They freeload while you pay the bill”

We went to Guatemala and had such a good time in this interesting country that we promised ourselves that we would return. (You can read about our adventures in Guatemala here!)


Like many news stories, these turned out to be greatly exaggerated. Yes, there are dangers, but you know what?

😮 In New York at that time, gang members were cutting some pedestrians’ faces!

😮 That March, New York City announced that they had registered 18 cases of Zika virus.

😮  And if you still think you might be safer wrapping yourself under the covers and staying in bed, two years ago a construction crane fell and crashed into a building below, killing a woman who was in bed sleeping.


So, before planning your trip, perhaps you’d like to update yourself of the 50 most dangerous cities in the world or check out where were the world’s most devastating earthquakes in the past decade, but I don’t recommend it. Instead, look at the TripAdvisor forums and communicate with other travelers who have visited your destination. Sign into Instagram and follow people from all over the world to see how normal their lives are. Then get on a plane and go! Go with your eyes wide open and see the world as it really is. Stay alert to the dangers and don’t take unnecessary risks. “Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Sunday Stills: Furry Friends & Future (2-in-1)

I have had a two week blogging break but I’m hoping I am back to blogging now (and reading my friends’ blogs) with a combined “Furry friends” and “Future” post!

I am always busy but I’ve been very distracted Instagram and by my dog Coco’s back left leg. I was walking him one day and all of a sudden he barked and then sat on the sidewalk. I had to carry him home.

I thoroughly checked his paw, thinking something got stuck in it, but I couldn’t find anything. The next day, our vet told us he tore the ligaments in his knee and would require surgery.

We had noticed that he would fall once in a while, but with all the running around, we didn’t think it was anything serious. I guess we weren’t paying enough attention.

I changed his diet to a vegetarian diet, full of sweet potatoes to ease the swelling. His leg isn’t perfect, so he still limps and falls sometimes, but he’s walking a lot and even runs sometimes. He’s so full of energy. Fortunately we never allowed him to become overweight, which would have put a lot more stress on his fragile legs.

He walked for an hour this night

Was the vet wrong that he needed surgery? I don’t know. Only time will tell…

Some of us are full of optimism for what the future holds and others are full of pessimism. Some people live for the weekends and others are waiting for retirement… but we don’t know what’s ahead for us, even just five minutes ahead. Coco’s problem came suddenly. The time to find happiness is now. Of course this wasn’t my grand awakening and I’m sure you’ve heard this many times before. It’s just another reminder with an example attached.

So hopefully I can get my interest back into blogging and I promise to catch up on everyone’s posts.)

And I hope you participate in the Sunday Stills Challenge!

Sunday Stills: Embrace (Plus, A Brief history of NYC That You Never Knew)

The NYC skyline

Welcome to Terri’s Photo Challenge: Sunday Stills! This weeks them is Embrace.

I embraced New York City, my home for the past 20 years! In this post I will tell you briefly an important story of NYC that you never knew!

 

At one time, New York City consisted only of Manhattan island. Brooklyn was its own city too, but it was much smaller than it is today. Queens was made of many separate towns.

The old railway tracks by the river

Ferries brought merchandise to the water fronts where the merchandise was transferred to trains.

So How And Why Did All Of The Towns And Cities Unite?

Brooklyn was incorporating many of the surrounding towns and growing fast. However, Chicago was growing very fast and was in a position of becoming the largest city in the United States. This meant that the largest corporations might move to Chicago, causing a collapse in New York City real estate prices.

The NYC skyline

The decision to incorporate into New York City was left to a vote by all of the surrounding towns and cities. The results were so close, but after millions of Brooklyn votes were counted, the yes vote won… by just 277! If Brooklyn hadn’t recently incorporated the neighboring towns of Bushwick and Williamsburg, the results would have been very different, since people in these two towns voted overwhelmingly in favor of becoming part of NYC. Some people stilll call this The Great Mistake of 1898! Only the town of Yonkers voted no, and it remains its own town, just north of the Bronx.

We went to the Long Island City waterfront on Friday night to take photos for this post 😉 Of course, Long Island City was its own city, although it’s now part of Queens.

The Bowery Boys do a fun podcast about New York City, full of interesting facts and highly entertaining stories!


Upcoming Themes

May 20 Recreational
May 27 Aroma

Sunday Stills: Refreshing

Welcome to Terri’s Photo Challenge: Sunday Stills! This weeks them is Refreshing.

Everyone is welcome to participate! Click the box above to add the link to your blog post with a photo about the week’s theme.


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Coco enjoying the cool spray from the fountains around the Unisphere.

 


Coco is so happy the warm weather time at the park are back!

Upcoming Themes

  • May 13 Embrace (courtesy of Hugh)
  • May 20 Recreational
  • May 27 Aroma

Sunday Stills: Recreation

Welcome back to Terri’s Sunday Stills photo challenge. This week the challenge prompt is recreation. I love a photo challenge because they stretch my photography skills and my story-telling skills, too. Click the link below to see how others interpreted the prompt.We would love to see what you come up with, too, so add your link to the challenge.

Ironically the recreation theme came on a week that I didn’t have any.

Sunday was a day of errands. We had six straight days of rain and Coco didn’t get to go out much, so we didn’t want to leave him home alone on the day it stopped.

Our first stop was Home Depot. Coco was excited by all of the people in the store. Some stopped to pet him.

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Next, we went to a little market called Raspberry Farm. They sell regular food items and gourmet products from all over the world, but at affordable prices. I bought two baguettes they sell that are from an artisan bakery in Brooklyn, prosciutto, and Coppa dolce (a dried salame) to make the sandwiches [bottom of the post], which also have dried tomato paste, Balsamic vinegar and Kalamata olive paste.

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I was only in the market for 10 minutes, and my husband waited in the car with Coco, but when I came back, it was like he hadn’t seen me in so long haha

But not haha really because just being together is special for Coco, even if we’re not doing something that’s fun for him.

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Upcoming Sunday Stills themes:

    • June 3 Fur and Feathers
    • June 10 Future
    • June 17 Twin
    • June 24 Tourist