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The Mennonite Enquirer first learned of the mysterious activity after being contacted by Mrs. Jacob F. Plett. She called the activity "paranormal". The occurrences were first told to her by Annie Martens. Mrs. Plett is a cousin to one of the previous owners of the house. Peter Froese bought their house from original owner in Steinbach and later sold it to Henry Bergen before they moved to Mexico in 1979.
According to the Jacob Plattshu, the strange occurrences began shortly after moving into the house. “It all started with things going missing”, she says. First knipsbrat tjlats started vanishing. Strangely, it was always the black crokinole pieces that went missing first. Then pages 7,9 and 16 of the Mennonite treasury were suddenly gone. “But there was more”, says the Plattshu. “One Autumn, some off the the firewood went missing and then a few days later it mysteriously reappeared! Residents on either side of the house were horrified and said there had to be something paranormal going on! Word spread quickly about the house that everyone deemed “haunted”.
Possibly, the most terrifying occurrence of all, is what happens every night, shortly after all the lights in the house go out. Neighbors have reported moaning noises . They also claim that rhythmic squeaking sounds can be heard during this exact same time and then suddenly all the noises abruptly stop! On Sundays, these same eerie noises occur in the middle of the afternoon!
The Mennonite Enquirer decided to contact Annie Plett and verify these reports of paranormal activity. She says that, “Mrs. Martens is a bit hard of hearing. I said that the strange happenings were probably because of a pair of Normans, those being Norman Plett and Norman Broesky. I remember when they kept moving Abram Friesens' woodpile every weekend. It drove him crazy! I just figured they had to be responsible for some of the funny business going on."
While it seems that most of the events can be explained away, the source of the nocturnal noises still remains unknown. We reached out to the former owners of the house but they could offer no explanation. Fifteen of their children who lived there are now grown up. The Mennonite Enquirer asked them as well, but they had no idea of what spooky sounds the neighbors heard. It would seem that some mysteries are better left unsolved.
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Plautdietsch word of the day: aunjeschmäa't
The situation: Jacob Rempel felt that he had been a bachelor long enough and decided on a mail-order bride. He thought that this might be the one time that he shouldn’t bargain shop and so he decided on the best available option. However, instead of a the bride that he expected, he only received the ladies girdle that was pictured on page 177 of the Eaton’s catalog. (and not the woman that he was expecting). For a brief moment, he thought that this was a clear case of false advertising.
Used in a sentence: Jacob haud sich eeint aunjeschmäa't.
What it means: Having dupped / fooled oneself. Not what was expected in any given situation.
(Jacob sent the girdle back to Eaton's and received his full refund of $3.98 which he promptly deposited back into the Credit Union). Ultimately, Jacob felt that he'd get a better return on his investment by leaving his money in the bank (based on compound interest at 2.75%).
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