Last night I recalled a memory that I hadn’t thought about in a long time, but one that I will never forget as long as I live. It was the one and only time I have been overwhelmed by a feeling of pure fear.
Twenty or so years ago, when I lived in South Miami, I used to join the early morning park walkers, if I was up in time from a late night in the restaurant. This one particular day I knew my walking friends would be long gone and at their jobs, but I fancied my walk anyway. It was around 11am, a typical beautiful Florida sunny day and the park was only a five minutes walk from my house, so off I went. The park was totally deserted, surprisingly not even Mums and babies in pushchairs, not a soul around. The walking circuit was around the perimeter, a nice even pathway, mostly very open, but two or three places where you would walk through trees, but not in any kind of darkness. As I walked around the circuit, suddenly I had the most terrible feeling come over me, I don’t think I can explain it well enough to do it justice, and this feeling was pure fear, and it grew inside me rapidly. I speeded up, still not a soul around, no strange noises, no cracking twigs, no footsteps behind me, nothing at all to explain this utter terror wrapping its claws around me. I started to jog, then run and didn’t slow down until I left the park and was on the road home. It took me a couple of hours to calm down fully.
To this day I cannot explain why I felt this way, all these years later I can vividly remember how I felt. This has never happened to me since, it was without explanation, unfounded and made me think perhaps I was going mad. But that day I felt something evil and that something really terrifying was going to happen to me.
I never returned to that park again.