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Ghost Marchers

BY CLAIRIE

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In the 1970s I traveled to Paris, France with a tour group. We stayed in a hotel on the Left Bank called something like Hotel Luticia Concorde. Several days later, I was in my room getting ready to meet the others in the lobby for an afternoon of sight seeing, when I heard a rather unexpected sound outside my hotel door. This was the sound of cadent marching, which was becoming increasingly loud, as if a flank of people were marching down the wide corridor. Listening inside the door, I waited to open it until it sounded as if the last of the marchers had passed by about 10 or 15 feet. I then opened the door, curious as to why someone would be marching in a hotel hallway.

What I saw was absolutely nothing and absolutely no one. However, the cadence of the marching was still audible, as if travelling down the hallway. Deciding that this must be some odd echoing effect, and that the marchers must have turned the corner at the end of the hallway, I followed the sound down and peered around the corner. Still nothing and no one there. Looking around rather confused, with the sound gradually fading away, I returned to my room and then hurried down to the lobby.

Meeting in the lobby with the tour group, I inquired if anyone had seen the marchers I had heard and was met with rather puzzled looks. No one had. I would likely then have forgotten the incident entirely, filing it away as odd and not understood, but that is all. I had not been left unnerved or nervous, just somewhat curious.

What is then even stranger, however, is that about two months after my return to Canada, I happened to meet an acquaintance who during conversation mentioned she had borrowed books from our newly opened public library. She had decided to read up on the history of France. After mentioning a few historic facts, she happened to mention the name of the hotel where I had been staying, commenting that it had apparently been occupied by German soldiers during World War II.

Now very interested, I asked if it said anything else about "my hotel." To my complete shock, she replied, "No not really. Well, just some nonsense about it being haunted. Apparently, some people claim they can hear the sounds of the German soldiers marching through the halls."

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