Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The Mysterious Thing

In those photos of the house, I mentioned a strange thing in the infrared image. What appeared to be a square-trimmed hedge overlying the wall. I have not yet been back to get another photograph because the weather has been dreadful.

Here's a clipped-out section of the ordinary photo:

As you can see, it's a very low wall. Consider the distance from the windowsill to the wall. Sorry about that obtrusive date stamp. I've worked out how to turn that off now.

Now, here's the same section from the infrared image:

This isn't a great image, but then I wasn't looking for anything. I was testing a filter. However, compare the distance from the windowsill to the top of whatever-it-is. I took the photos from across the street, and was standing for both.

You can make out the image of the wall (on my screen: whether this will transfer to Blogger I don't know).

Here's that image again with the wall outlined:

See it now? It could be just an artefact. I won't make any definitive claims until I've taken more photos there.

I did visit the library to look for old images of the town. There are many, but I didn't find an image of this particular house, unfortunately. It was connected with the long-since-closed railway works which lie behind it, and which are now used as business premises. Probably a manager's house.

What I did find were several aerial views taken in the 1920's. Again, this particular house is not clearly visible, but every house, every garden is surrounded by a square-clipped low hedge. It was quite the thing at the time, it seems. A photo of the town's mill, in the 1860's, shows it protected by a taller hedge. Later photos show these hedges gradually replaced by walls and railings.

It is therefore possible that such a hedge did exist. Whether this infrared image shows that, or is a coincidental artefact, remains to be established. I am, in any case, encouraged to carry my infrared filter with me at all times, along with at least one digital camera.

What puzzles me is why any spirit would want to display a hedge, instead of showing themselves? I don't believe we can be haunted by dead plants--otherwise I would be surrounded by the wailing spirits of many, many houseplants.

So if it is a hedge... why?


Southern Writer said...

Okay, I did see that, but didn't know if it's what you were talking about. I'm going to go look again. I'll be back.

Anonymous said...

There's definitely a difference between the two pictures. I looked at the slightly different camera angles, too, but the slightness and the angle couldn't have made the hedge appear, I don't think.

Y'all have funny hedges there. Our hedges generally run horizontal to our buildings, not stick out like a tongue from the front of the house.

It is intriguing to wonder why a hedge, of all things, would appear. Didn't you talk about the difference between ghosts and apparitions in your book? So the hedge would be an apparition. Maybe there was something special about that particular one. Maybe someone was very proud of it. I know I get attached to things in my garden.

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