When we think of ghosts, we think of Scooby-Doo.
There must have been a lot of ghost episodes on Scooby-Doo back in the '80s.
The ghosts on Scooby-Doo were usually villains covered in white sheets. And they would have gotten away with it, if it wasn't for those meddling kids! [If you watched the show, you'll get that]
Anyhow, we're really here to talk about Peg-leg Jack, who died in suspicious circumstances in Minmi back in the early mining days.
So says Bob Skelton, the bush poet and raconteur known as the Minmi Magster.
Apparently Jack died a pauper, but some people didn't believe it.
"Miners didn't get bad money," Bob said.
Legend has it that he kept money in his peg-leg, so someone dug up the body.
"The peg-leg was missing," Bob said.
According to folklore, Jack came back to Minmi as a ghost.
"He came back looking for his peg-leg," the Magster said.
We've heard of peg-leg ghosts before. Usually they're pirates. So why not a miner?
University of Melbourne students came to investigate the peg-leg ghost story.
"They made a movie on a Beta tape. That's going back when the old video tapes came out. Of course, we bought the bomb one - we got the Beta. They reckoned Beta was a better unit, but everything went to VHS."
Beta tapes. Now there's a ghost story.
The Magster doesn't believe in ghosts.
"A lot of people do. I think they like to try to believe in the supernatural," he said.
That aside, he does have another ghost story. He and a young bloke were riding horses at Minmi back in the day.
"When we came back, I didn't have the key to open the gate at the bottom of the paddock," he said.
The Magster walked to his property to get the key.
When he returned, the youngster was "laying on the ground in a state of shock".
"He reckoned he'd seen this ghost go across the paddock. He probably imagined it. All in the mind, like a dream. He might have dozed off. How real are some of them dreams?"
In another ghost story, the Magster recalled that a bloke saw a ghostly figure "flapping across the cemetery" early one morning when it was still dark.
"It shocked him. He ran home and didn't speak much about it, it frightened him that much.
"It turned out to be a sheila in Minmi sleepwalking in a white nightdress. Others say she might have been down there meeting her lover."
A Bit of Peace and Quiet
Meanwhile, we were talking to a Hunter-based doctor recently.
He recalled early in his career the story of an old and frail man, who was a widower.
He had a cardiac arrest and a near-death experience. He thought he'd crossed to the other side.
The doctors successfully resuscitated him. After he awoke, the man recounted that he'd seen a woman in white who he interpreted as being his wife. He recalled feeling profound peace and quiet.
In contrast, the hospital ward was quite busy and noisy.
This led to the joke that the man probably preferred the peace and quiet.
In the end, he was more than happy to be alive and looking forward to going home.
IN OTHER NEWS
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