The Staircase

At a young age, I hung out at an Italian Restaurant in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It’s been about 40 years since then, and the only memories that I have of it are images and smells.

The lighting was low. The furniture was red. It was crowded but comfortable.

The staff was young and kind.

The smell was Italian, or at least became Italian forever in my mind.

The people who are present in these memories showed a genuine interest in me as a young child. I suppose that’s a good thing for a kid to have. The restaurant didn’t have a lot of room to romp around in. I could have been made to feel in the way.

I was always made to feel welcome. So were the other kids.

Somewhere in this happy memory of youth, there also lies the presence of the supernatural. The only thing that I remember about it is standing in the middle of the dining area. One of the cooks was telling a story about a presence that occupied the restaurant.

It lived in the attic, which I had never seen. I was only shown a door, and told that on the other side of it was a staircase.

I can still see the door in my dreams.

I can only imagine what the staircase looks like.

My mind has painted a picture of what was up there.

I don’t remember much time at the restaurant after that, only that it didn’t feel as carefree after that story. The few memories I still have of being there after hearing about the presence that lived in the attic are filled with emotions of not being alone there any more.

It is an experience that is somehow incomplete, and has left an impression on me to this day. The memory has followed me, and I wish I knew what was up the stairs.

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