A little backstory before I get into things, back when I was in year 10 of secondary school, our Religious Studies class got taken on a trip to the Holocaust centre, we had to go around writing down any information that might come in handy for our upcoming exams. The trip was actually very interesting, our class even got to sit with a real concentration camp survivor, listening to his story from all those years a go was certainly a very moving experience. At the end of the trip we all got to go and have a quick look in the gift shop, I decided to buy a rubber red wrist band, the kind of thing you might see people who work for charity’s giving out, they usually have the name of the charity or their website on them to help raise awareness for whatever it is they’re raising money for. Anyway this wrist band had the words ‘Genocide- never again’ written on it, I figured it’s a nice, fitting souvenir. I put it on my wrist as we walked out and that was that.
About a year and a half or so later, that red wrist band had never left my wrist, it wasn’t hugely sentimental or anything, I just never really saw the need to take it off, after all it was water proof and I just kind of forgot it was even there. The reason for me telling you about this wrist band will make sense later on.
Now at the time this event took place, it was winter, me and my friend lets call her Lucy, we were meant to be going to a theme park early on a Saturday morning, it was a trip we’d been awarded by our school for over achieving in our grades. Coaches would be transporting us there, we had to be at the school 9:00am sharp, no later, or the coaches would be leaving without us. Lucy suggested as it was pretty early in the morning and she lived closer to our school, that I stop at hers the for night so we could make our way together, I happily agreed. I brought my sleeping stuff and change of clothes to school, so we could just go straight back to hers when the day was over. Now like I said, it was winter out, it had reached below freezing temperatures, however there was no snow or anything like that forecast for the next day so we never thought the weather would be an issue for this trip. We just needed to make sure we dressed appropriately.
Well we wake up the next day and low and behold a clear 6 inches of snow had fallen during the night and it was still coming down. Needless to say our trip was cancelled. A little bummed we decided to make the best of it and have a fun snow day. We were up early enough to get a McDonald’s breakfast. The roads were horrendous so instead of getting Lucy’s mom to drive us, we rolled us a few smokes, wrapped up and set off to get our hash brown’s. As we walked there I couldn’t get over how heavy it was coming down, we hadn’t seen snow like it for years. On the way back Lucy suggested we go sledging and that there was a place near by she knew it would be perfect for. Sounded fun to me, plus giving the fact I thought I’d be riding around on roller-coasters by now, it seemed like the next best thing. So we went, grabbed her sledge, I put on some mittens, which I would just quickly like to point out, covered up my red wrist band, again why I’m telling you this will make sense later on. Off we went on our journey.
The place she was taking me to was about a ten minuet walk from hers. We arrived at a bunch of field’s. Now I’m going to roughly explain the layout of this place which is kind of important to the story. Basically we had walk over one big field, at the end of it is a steep slope that leads onto the next field, at the end of this one there is another slightly steeper slope leading onto what I could see was a small football field with a couple of goal posts. I could see at the end of this field there was fencing surrounded by a load of vine and general greenery. I could also see a built up train track, separating the football field from the field on the other side, now that field I was actually familiar with as it was a short walk from my house. I’d never actually walked in the field, but I’d explored the church graveyard that resided right by it as a kid. Graveyards kind of interested me as a kid for some reason. Anyway because I’d never actually walked into that field, I didn’t know that under the built up train track, hiding along the fence, there was a creepy little bridge that lead you to the field’s we were now in.
The slopes at the end of each of the fields were ideal for sledging, so we started going up and down them both. It was no roller-coaster but I was still having fun. It started snowing really heavily again and so Lucy suggested we go and take shelter under the bridge at the bottom of the football field.
Now like I said, I didn’t know this bridge even existed and so obviously I had never been there before. To get the bridge, we had to go down a pretty steep pathway which kind of curved slightly and had all kinds of shrubbery more or less taking over its course. Once we reached the bottom I could see a small gravel pathway which lead us underneath the bridge. Looking ahead, straight away something caught my eye. There lying perfectly in the middle underneath the bridge there was what looked like a red wrist band. I pointed it out to my friend Lucy and jokingly said “Imagine if I picked that up and it was my wrist band”. She laughed and said that’d be kinda creepy. We walked up to it, finally sheltered from the cold wind and heavy snow. Curious I picked it up to see what it said. A chill ran down by spine when I read, you guessed it, ‘Genocide- never again’. I thought to myself, now that’s either one hell of a coincidence and someone who has also visited the Holocaust centre came to this exact bridge and dropped this here. Or it was mine. “But that’s impossible” I said. I rolled up the sleeves of all the layers I had on, took off the mittens that had been covering the band and… it wasn’t there. Now this wrist band hadn’t fallen off me since the day I put it on 1 and a half years ago, any time it had come close I’d always noticed. It was impossible not to as it was made of rubber, so I could always feel if it was rolling over my hand. But still, being the logical person I am, my mind started searching for answers for how it could have possibly ended up here. There were none, it wasn’t possible. Lets say I got caught up in all the fun of sledging and it did some how fall off my wrist without me noticing, (baring in mind I had multiple layers covering it), the ground was covered with a fresh layer of white snow, so surely I would have noticed a bright red wrist band lying on the ground. Again though for arguments sake lets say I didn’t notice the red wrist band against the white snow and that the wind was strong enough to carry it across two large fields, it still would have had to taken a very specific route to end up exactly where it was, it would have had to travel specifically into the corner of the small football field, down the small steep path, without getting caught up in all the vines growing across it, along the gravel pathway, then once under the bridge where there was little to no wind to carry it into the middle.
We couldn’t believe it, we lit a few smokes, and started raking our brains. The whole time we sat there, something just felt off. We decided to call it a day and make our way back, as we approached the bottom of the steep path, Lucy was already half way up when I decided to take one last look back at the bridge, only to see a dark shadowy figure just standing there in the middle where the wrist band had been. I bolted up that path faster than I thought possible giving the fact the snow had made it kinda slippery. I decided not to tell my friend what I had just seen as I didn’t want to freak her out. She’d of probably thought I was just trying to scare her after what had happened anyway. In fact when ever I re-tell the story to my friends I always leave out that part, partly because I don’t think they’ll believe me and partly because the thought of even mentioning that shadowy figure gives me a sicky feeling in the pit of my stomach.
I’ve never personally been one to believe in the paranormal, though I’ve always been opened minded to the idea. But after exhausting all logical explanations for what me and my friend experienced, I’m left believing that what I saw that day under the bridge was as real as it gets.
I’ve since been back there by myself and all I can say is I definitely didn’t feel alone.