Just off a dark stretch of highway in Quebec, at certain, specific hours of the night, one may find a deserted Econolodge, hidden in the shadows of industrial buildings and surrounded by yawning wastegrounds, litter, dereliction. We rolled in around 2am, delirious and tired, having driven from Ottowa where everything was booked. Maybe it was this fatal exhaustion that led us to ignore all the warning signs.
Because if this Econolodge existed at all, and was not merely a group hallucination, it was most certainly haunted. Observe the evidence, and quake in fear:
1. reception staff with a manner that definitely suggested they had something to hide; indeed with an appearance that had a kind of indefinable intangibility about it.
2. a bloodstain that inexplicably appeared over two beds during the night.
3. an open door to an empty room, which we kept finding re-opened, despite closing it each time we passed.
4. whining noises of static and a cacophony of tv channels playing simultaneously from this cursed room, despite no one being there.
5. one of the band members had a dream of a black dog and awoke so frightened they were almost screaming
6. the few other guests we met were old old enough to seem decrepit, with odd accents and 1920s clothing
7. upon discussing this hotel with locals once we got to Montreal, we were told there hadn't been a hotel in that area for nearly 80 years!
8. ok that last one was a lie
Needless to say, after our evening of curious hauntings we felt bound to stay for another night, and Mel even dared to do her laundry. Yet I am still left with the lingering feeling that this hotel never really existed, and passers by - if indeed there were likely to have been any passers by in that remote and desolate hinterland - would have seen five figures giving the impression of sleeping, doing laundry, talking to hotel staff, all out under the night sky, the wind whistling around them, surrounded only by the littered flints and rusting wires of what seemed to be the ruins of a once-elegant hotel, marked with the scars of a horrible accident.