Why Are We Here?

Hey folks!

I’ve been working on this blog for a little while now and since there’s a few new followers, let’s take this opportunity to tell you all a little bit about this site and what I hope to accomplish.

WeWoHa is Weird, Wonderful, and possibly Haunted. It’s my way of sharing some of the great places that are in and around New England. I’ve always been interested in the off-beat and the abnormal. Mostly because I think that every place is a little off-beat and every thing has its own unique qualities. There is no normal, just what is. So I hope to visit various sites across the region and share interesting information, pictures, historical data, and whatever else catches my fancy. Perhaps, through this blog, you might learn about a place you never knew of or find reasons to visit a place you’ve only thought of in passing.

I should share with you that this endeavor isn’t entirely out of good will toward tourism. New England is full of old tales. There’s a ghost story around every corner and an urban legend to follow. I want to believe that there is something here. I’m not sure what. I don’t know if ghosts are real. I don’t know if any of the stories we told each other at sleep overs when we were kids is true. I just know that I want to experience something. To see something. Anything. A twitch in the curtain to a world beyond this world. And I know that if I’m to find any type of experience, then it will be where I call home.

I want to share these experiences with people. And I want to know what others have experienced. I want to hear from people that have been to these places and have had their notions about the world challenged. And I would love to hear from anyone from anywhere about what they’ve experienced in places they call home. It’s a wide and wonderful world, full of weird possibilities.

By sharing my adventures, I hope to find the magic int he world. And by hearing from you that read this, I hope to learn from your experiences. I want to learn and to share. And mostly, selfishly, I want to experience.

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WeWoHa Wednesday: Stephen King’s Revival

On Tuesday, November 11th, Stephen King released his newest novel, Revival. He also kicked off a week long book tour with a signing at the Barnes & Nobles near Union Square in New York City. I had the pleasure of being one of the idiots super awesome people standing in line! Seriously though, it was a ton of fun. I got there at around 1:30 AM and there were already around 50 people in line, either sleeping on the sidewalk or dozing in chairs.

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Thankfully there was a 24-hour CVS and a deli across the street. They had something that passed as coffee. Dunkin Donuts didn’t open until 6 AM though. Our spot in line had some great King fans. Everyone was excited and nice and just wanted to chat (when we weren’t dozing of course.) I met people from as close as Long Island and as far away as England. Everyone just seemed genuinely thrilled. There was only one heckler on the street. Some Irish dude that had clearly just been kicked out of the bar at closing time calling us “fools” and asking what we were doing with our lives. He was mostly unintelligible though and it provided some much needed entertainment.

At 9:00 AM the doors opened and they let us into the store in groups of 10. We bought our book then headed up to the 4th floor. Ah, the 4th floor, how do I remember thee? It was hot, ok. And cramped. They shoved 350 people into the space. They had chairs, yes,but they also had the heat cranked. I started to doze off at one point and jerked awake so hard I hit the lady next to me. She thought it was pretty funny though. See, that’s the great thing about this event. Having the shared love of King’s works made it feel like you were hanging out with 350 friends you never knew you had.

Then came the noon hour and the man himself. The room became very still and very quiet. Everyone waiting in anticipation. He came up the stairs and there was a raucous cheer. He’s tall, ya know? Taller than you think he’ll be. He did a little photo op with the Barnes & Nobles people and we all took advantage.

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At this point my phone’s battery was near death. But then King walked up onto the platform and did some stretching exercises and I caught him in one of the greatest poses ever.

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Classic, right? So then my phone died. Guess I shouldn’t have been on various apps all night. King said a few words and the signing began. It moved pretty quickly. There were no pictures and no personalizations, just a nice signature. I planned on just thanking him for the book but I was wearing my Boston Red Sox hoodie. He looked up and noticed it, then gave the thumbs up and told me it was good and he liked it. I told him I hoped we had better luck next season and he agreed that this season wasn’t very good. Then I did thank him. It was a nice interaction and I am thankful for his kindness, especially with so many people wanting his time. But what really makes me respect him is what he did for the person in front of me. She was our partner in line for the entire night and had flown up from Florida just for the occasion. She had never met King before and was nervous and excited and anxious and overwhelmed. I can’t even remember her name because I think I caught it only once. She went up and thanked him and told him how grateful she was. He took her hand and said wonderful words back to her. He was genuine and gracious and she practically floated off stage. Afterwards she was in near tears. It made me proud to be a fan.

I can only hope that everyone gets such a wonderful experience with whomever they hold in high regard.

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The Timex Museum

Today we focus on the “kinda weird” and “definitely wonderful” as we explore the Timex Museum in Waterbury, Connecticut.

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Alright, I know what you’re saying: Waterbury has a museum?! I thought it only had hills and crime.

Well, you’d be right about the hills and the crime but you’ve been missing out on this great museum experience. At $6 admission for an adult and a whopping $4 for kids 5-12, (free for the youngins) it’s a damn good deal in my book. Parking is at the shopping center next to the mall so no extra expense there.

The first thing you notice as you pull up to the building is this huge freakin’ guy:

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What does he have to do with the museum? We’ll answer that later. For now, on to the tour.

As soon as you enter you’re greeted by desk attendants. They give you the rundown of the museum and guide you in the right direction. They instruct you to start at the third floor and work your way down, which is exactly what we did.

Right off the elevator is the Timex portion of the museum. Spacious and comfortable, you peruse the gallery of clocks first produced by the Waterbury Clock Company and then make your way through time as it grew into the Timex Company.

I’m sure pictures aren’t allowed but this was too creepy to pass up:

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Best part? Making your own watches!

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(Yeah, grown adult here. It was awesome.)

Favorite exhibit: The Disney watches! Who doesn’t love Mickey Mouse?

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So then you make your way downstairs to the 2nd floor. Continue through time as the company grows and changes through the decades. They have a fun section that features the creation of the Indiglo watch. Making things glow is always fun.

After that things get weird because out of nowhere you find yourself in an exhibit that details the discovery and exploration of Easter Island! What the heck that has to do with watches and clocks, I don’t know, but I’ll take it. Now the guy outside makes sense. Remember him?

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A fun, interactive, and informative display for all ages, this exhibit is a great addition to the museum. Oh, and you get to play with toy boats in water.

Move down to the first floor and there’s a smaller exhibit about earthen mounds that are found all over the Midwest. Much of the first floor refers back to Timex and, of course, the Timex store, but the mound exhibit is still informative. Much appreciation of the addition of a little bit of weird in this already wonderful experience.

 The Timex Museum is family friendly and affordable. Definitely a place to visit if you have a spare hour or two as the tour doesn’t take much time at all. Well worth the visit.

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Paranormal Bucket List

Has it been too long between posts? It has. But we’ve been discussing Bucket Lists of the paranormal kind.

A bucket list is those things you want to do before you… well.. kick the bucket. We decided to put a twist on ours and make a Paranormal Bucket List. All the things we want to experience and/or see within the realm of the paranormal. The list is in no particular order.

1. Stay at the Stanley Hotel: Nestled in the Rocky Mountains sits a looming, grand hotel with glistening white sides and a striking red roof. And it is most noted for being Stephen King’s inspiration for The Shining. It’s the inspiration because the place is famously haunted. And of course… you have to stay in room 217, the most disturbing of them all. Of the three of us, one (the writer… we’ll call me Big Red) has been there. I went a few years ago around Halloween time. It’s a pretty amazing place and area, regardless of the paranormal side, and they offer tours and free wandering of the grounds. However, even I haven’t stayed there yet and am very interested in doing so.

2. Tour the Warren Occult Museum: Living in Connecticut, we’re pretty well acquainted with who the Warren’s are and the legacy they have in the world of the paranormal. Just to see all of the items they’ve collected over the years would be a treat.

3. Meet Lorraine Warren: Since we’re on the subject, it would be extremely interesting to pick the mind of one of the foremost paranormal investigators of our time. to hear her stories and have her share her experiences would be an incredible honor.

4. Stay at “Dracula’s Castle“: The famed castle in Romania is long rumored to be cursed and haunted. The history buff in me would love to tour the grounds to see the different centuries worth of architectural building styles. The paranormal buff in me wants to experience the unseen forces that lurk within.

5. Experience…. something!: Catch a great EVP, see an apparition, feel a cool breeze in a warm room, any experience will do. It’s the quest for the unexplained that drives this field. The wonders of the world beyond this world lay open for us to appreciate and be baffled by. And then to not only experience the thrill of the unknown, but to document it as well? It would be fantastic.

6. Visit Eastern State Penitentiary: Another notoriously haunted site, this one is actually pretty accessible to most anyone with an interest. So this item might happen by the end of this year.

7. Investigate New Orleans: A place such as New Orleans holds so much history, myth, and legend of the paranormal that I’m not sure anyone with a deep interest in the paranormal would leave this place off their list. It’s a modern place rooted in the past and that past contains spiritual elements unlike anywhere else int he United States.

8. Visit Dudleytown (legally): This might not be well known outside of Connecticut, but this is supposedly a very haunted place. Unfortunately, it’s on private property and is pretty well watched by the State Police. We attempted to visit once… but that’s a tale for another day…

To be continued….