Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Niagara Falls: Maid Of The Mist, Lady In Red?


The Truth About Creatures In The Night
Another Travel Tale:

I travelled alone to Niagara Falls and was on the Canadian side. Heard so much about it. One of the greatest tourist attractions in the world. It was my first visit at late morning. I had the usual tourist treats, and even in the 80's, it wasn't cheap. I couldn't remember how I got there but it was a hotel not too far from the Falls.

Got on a boat, Maid Of The Mist tour and watched Niagara Falls up close, pouring its heart out for everyone. But the view from the boat? All we saw was water. 
 Well, it's water, water everywhere
And not a drop to drink
So tell me now 
Oh what else can a poor fella do 
But sit right down and...*

It was like walking in heavy rain. But they gave me this plastic raincoat with a hood. Blue, I remember was the colour. Or was it yellow? Then we got into the lower part of the falls (image above), got into a boat and got wet, just so we could see Niagara above us.

It was supposed to be exciting going on this boat ride. But it wasn't. And the camera got wet (we didn't have iPhones then). And it couldn't function properly.
The mist could be seen behind me. It was cold and wet even with raincoats.

I was in that area for hours, supposedly to enjoy its unique environment and listen to the ever-roaring waters. It was special. Because the last time I saw a waterfall was at Kota Tinggi. Cannot compare. Like looking at an *attap house in Malaysia at one end and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai at the other.

Had lunch alone, then tea, cakes and a simple burger for dinner. 
Then it got dark. A mist fast shrouding the area. I wasn't aware of the time. As the weather was cold, I felt my heart being squeezed tight by some unseen hand... Breathless, choking.

I was in pretty bad shape, bitter cold and fearful. I looked around me. Most folks had left, with only a few young couples idling around. The presence of the frightful heavy mist encompassing the already dark woods was eerie.
In the boat under the waterfall. Tourists were soaked. I was drenched.

Don't ever get lost in the evening, in the open, in Canada. You freeze to death. And this wasn't Winnipeg. It was Ontario. Just as gripping. 

Worse, I had read about a native Indian story, the Maid of the Mist legend where a young woman, in suicidal bereavement, got into a canoe and entered the waters above the falls.

I realised that it was only about 5 pm but it was totally dark and I knew I was lost in unknown territory.  I walked and walked and walked, quite far now from where the Falls were. Then I realised I was walking round in circles beside a high wire fencing. 
 The cold was getting through my Nike track shoes, my blue jeans and even my leather jacket. I had no muffler, no thick gloves and my skinny self could not take the icy pangs of the blowing wind. Mind you this wasn't even Winter.

This was it I told myself. Here lie I, waiting to die. I reached the road after walking up a gradual incline, and looked around, praying for someone to help me. Nothing... but only the mist and I could hardly see three feet in front of me. I trudged on and was walking for about ten minutes with really weary legs when I heard the sound of a car behind me.

'Lady in Red' Chris de Burgh. 
YouTube Video by: Os. Bend.

I turned around and, although dazzled by the lights, I felt the bumper nearly touching my legs, I saw this beautiful sight; a lady inside wound down her window. She was pretty. And de Burgh's music coming from her car radio:

And when you turned to me and smiled
It took my breath away
And I have never had such a feeling
Such a feeling of complete and utter love
As I do tonight

I honestly could not remember what happened after that. From the moment I stepped into the lady's car, up to the time I spoke to the concierge, what happened in between was a blank.

The biggest surprise I got, was when I spoke to the concierge to tell my tale. 

"Oh, there are haunted houses and roads near Niagara," he mentioned nonchalantly.  

"Oh," he added lamely, "you'll never get lost in the woods at Niagara. There's always a lady dressed in red, in a red car, ready to pick people who are lost."

When I asked him for the time, he replied, "It's two in the morning, sir." 


Even till today, I am confused. 


From the film "The Tommy Steele Story" - 1957 by Lionel Bart / Michael Pratt / Tommy Steele

THE LADY IN RED (You Tube Video)
Into The Light Album - June 1986
British-Irish singer-songwriter Chris de Burgh

Google ones are for illustrative purpose only. A personal collection taken at Niagara Falls shows two pictures of myself in the boat.

This story is absolutely true. I was lost at Niagara Falls, walked in the cold in heavy mist and was sent to my hotel by this mysterious lady who neither spoke nor smiled at me. What happened in between remained a mystery.
Not a spook; definitely a guardian angel.

Thanks Andy !
You really freaked me out and kept me up all night when I was at the Fairmont in Vancouver. Here's why... [Click 'Comments' below to read why blog contributor Henri Gann was scared.]


JAMES KWOK said...

Good afternoon, Abang

I was at Niagara Falls in summer 1997 (while at a company meeting in New York)
then in Feb 2010 with my wife Alice, while it was still snowing heavily.

This 'Niagara Honeymoon' for us was a gift from our daughter Vanda. She and her husband were on 2-year attachment in San Diego's North Island Naval Base.

When Vanda showed us the photo of where she had arranged for us to spend our one-week winter vacation - a 2-storey bungalow called 'A Night to Remember' -
my wife's first reaction was 'Is it haunted?' Fresh on her mind evidently was the
series of 'classic horror nights' on cable, with unforgettable spine-chillers such
Psycho and The Shining.

When we checked in on a Friday, all four bedrooms were occupied, but by Sunday
evening, we're the only ones left. The other three couples were North Americans who were there only for the weekend, and the caretaker came in only in the mornings
to prepare our breakfast and do housekeeping.

We did have a sighting on the Maid of the Mist, in fact within walking distance of
our honeymoon suite, and we're not the only witnesses. There must be at least
another hundred people who will testify under oath (truthfully, not Trump fully)
that we came face-to-face with the larger-than-life apparition of the native North
American maiden who decided to end her life by kayaking over the Falls.

However, she came to us not as a floating ectoplasm, but on the giant screen of
the Niagara Falls IMAX Theatre. as a really attractive beauty with whom any unattached young man would want to spend a night to remember.



DR. A. K. said...

Did you go through this experience?

Matt Tan (not Ice not Fried nor frozen) said...

LMAO, what a tall story??? more than 10 storeys high, as this is Niagara Falls
many stories as tall as the water there !!! it 's all wet, and it's no different from the Loch Ness Monster tail... i mean tale, LOL.. pulling your leg ..
especially when the ghost knows you're from Singapore where there is their cousin Pontianak and that one who enjoys riding at the back of your motor cycle along bukit timah or was it sembawang where there are banana trees all over the kampong???
All that is gone now I am sure, replaced by even taller storeys (no pun intended)..
and the Pontianak has emigrated to Niagara Falls, like so many Singapore-born long haired man ... and women including Ponti herself...who fled the kampong because they won't allow long hair drifting below your ears LMAO.

but it is a very good tale... even if it came from a fish that cannot swim LOL

btw, I am sure it was cold for you in Ontario Summer, as Singaporeans are not used to the cold wet waters of Niagara, even in Summer it must be chilly for all those from a tropical country. But if you're like me, anything warmer than - 25 Celsius
with windchill coming to -50C included, then we will say it is cold here
in Canada. But then again, we are no longer Singaporeans,
we're Canadians, aye!!! LMAO

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Love your comment, Matt. But it's true Matt. Lady gave me a ride home. I must have dozed off or was just too tired to care. But the time factor didn't click.

It was about 7 or 8 when I met her but 2 am when I was at the hotel.

Thanks to James and A. too for replies.


Wow Andy.
That is quite an experience you had! Gives me shivers.
There is so much we do not know, eh?

Hope all is well with you and yours,
Jane in Winnipeg

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Jane for your comment. Coming from Canada, you would know better right?


Hi Andy,

I should also tell you that my Mum believed in ghosts, and always wanted to see/meet one. She would have been thrilled (and chilled) by your encounter with the lady in red.
It is quite a moving story.
We had family in Niagara Falls until a few years ago; I spent part of every summer of my childhood there.

Best and warmest,

Matt Tan (Canada) said...

so what car does a ghost drive? a Booick??? that's what Canadian who believe in ghost say . Another thing, you can't photograph a ghost either, so you really have to be drinking alot, like many who come from Canada, to be able to photograph or drive in a ghost being driven by a ghost.
btw, did she pick you up on the US side or Canuck side?
even that is a problem when she gets past the to the other side of the bridge.
Unless she pulls the wool over the eyes of the border patrol too LOL
Coming from Canada does not make you a ghost expert either ...
I 've lived in Canada longer than many who "come" from Canada... I would know even better LMAO Sorry Andy... the water does funny things to people, both Canadians
and foreigners .. esp when it 's white lighting, which also comes from Canada.
Oh , last thing, the ghost can't drive a Booick or a FauxWagen , since her licence is expired. She's probably back down in Niagara because she lost her boarding pass or her passport was reject at St Peter's Gate.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you, Matt.

You have the mind of a genius and the cunning of a FauxWagen.
I wasn't drunk but cold.
I don't drink at all and ignorant about border passes.

But one thing was clear, that of de Burgh's music and the lady was in red.

Car? No not a BOOick? Could be a FURrari. She was in furs, you know, like a "Faux".

henri gann said...

Thanks Andy !
You really freaked me out and kept me up all night when I was at the Fairmont in Vancouver. Here's why...
"The Lady in Red is one of Vancouver’s most famous ghosts. According to legend, she haunts the historic Fairmont Hotel Vancouver at 900 West Georgia St., built in 1939, walking the top floors in her elegant red gown, occasionally stopping at the window to stare wistfully out at the city." from harrison mooney in vancouver,bc

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Hi Henri,
Writing this note from Perth Australia at a seaside resort at Madurah. No ghosts here but quiet since it's Winter.

I heard about this Lady in Red but didn't know she also operates at Vancover, Fairmont. My nieces used to tell me about it when I used to visit them before.

She could be the same Lady from Niagara Falls. Travelling far I presume across provinces.


CTV Vancouver
Published Saturday, May 27, 2017 3:49PM PDT
Last Updated Saturday, May 27, 2017 3:51PM PDT

A famous ghost purported to haunt the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is the talk of the town after a social media user snapped a spooky picture of something – or someone – looming near a window.

Legend has it the ritzy downtown hotel is sometimes inhabited by a well-dressed spectre dubbed the “Lady in Red.” She’s said to be the ghost of Jennie Pearl Cox, a socialite who frequented events in the hotel ballroom in the 1940s before dying in a car crash.
On Friday, Scott Graham shared an image of the hotel on Twitter and suggested he had spotted her floating figure from outside.


A picture of a red figure at a window of the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is creating a stir on social media. May 26, 2017. (Twitter/Scott Graham)

“She’s in this picture in a window near the top right. No Photoshop,” Graham said.
CTV News visited the hotel and found there is something red in a window near the top floor, though it appears to be a curtain or a tarp used for renovations.
The Fairmont did not respond to requests for comment.

Ghosts of Vancouver, a website dedicated to local paranormal history, said most sightings of the “Lady in Red” have taken place on the 14th floor, but she has also sent a chill down the spines of people in the ground floor lobby.

“She sometimes passes through elevator doors on those floors and glides along the hallways,” the site reads.

A family from Japan also once encountered the spirit in one of the rooms, according to Ghosts of Vancouver, and called the front desk to ask if it had been double-booked.

With files from CTV Vancouver’s Ben Miljure

Joey said...

<7 wonders of the World!>
Yes indeed,brother Andy for bringing back so many beautiful memories, especially the Maid of the. Ist Boat Tour. Yellow rain coats or blue rain coats, i think both eh🤣😂Truly, it's amazing how magnificent is this place of attraction in Canada has attracted tourists from all over tve world every day, even during the freezing temperatures in the winter.

I'm fortunate that Niagara Falls was the 1st wonder i had visited in 1982. Throughout the years from 1981 to 1986, i had visited the Niagara Falls about 3 times with different friends. I am also very pleased to bring my family to Niagara Falls in 2003 when my son was 1 year old.

My wish is to go for another family holidays in the near future... 5 Great Lakes of Canada which i still remember vividly how our Geography teacher, Mrs Goodenough taught us and tested us about.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Joey,
I think Mrs. Goodenough knows that you're good enough to pass any of her tests and make it as a successful student and now a successful entrepreneur in life.

Yes, it's time we all start our new journeys to other places in the world and perhaps back to Niagara to meet that lady in red.

Cheers and appreciate you writing in during your rather busy period.

Cedric Collars said...

I love a good ghost story and the follow-up that goes with it. Puts a smile on my face 😃


What an adventure, and an amazing story Andy! I love it!! Very Stephen-King-ish, with the suspense and some comedic relief. Certainly a memorable day for you in a beautiful place, an interesting back story, and a mysterious woman.

If you had been frightened when you realised you were lost, I am sure it was quickly replaced by both relief and intrigue with the appearance of the red car and the lady in red!

Worthy of a song to commemorate a personal journey of discovery perhaps.


I'm scared already; reading till the image of the lady with blood on her face. I dare not read further.

You know you write very well and I could imagine when you describe. I will have my ow drama broadcasting in the brain. Wahaha. I won't continue reading.

This is an old article. Probably read it and 'flush' it away. Is this the only eerie posting?

Henri Gann validated it. Why were you travelling alone?

A. LAW said...

No I am not as I personally had some scary experiences myself. There are people who are more sensitive than others with respect to these unexplained unknown. The sensitive ones will feel the presence. Those who do not believe or have not had such experiences will brush it off as stories being made up and the same applies even if they feel or see something.

I have not seen but felt the presence and witnessed unexplained happenings. They don't bother us, we don't bother them.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks for the interesting comment. What you say is true. But I lost those few hours not realising where I was.


Wow! What a story! It belongs in the twilight zone.
Luckily you were unscathed then, but it was definitely a scary and an unforgettable experience.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

If you visit Niagara, go in the morning and leave by the afternoon before the sun sets. It get dark by 4pm actually, if I remember, even in Summer [uncertain].

Otherwise it's easy to get lost wandering around that area. This encounter happened many years ago in the 80s and I won't want to be blamed for giving wrong information.

It's my own personal encounter and I am not asking anyone to believe or disbelieve.

Thanks to everyone for the comments. And the song is lovely though. Never forget the LADY IN RED.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Koh Daisy
Jimmy Appudurai-chua
Jalani Mohamed
Hiroshi Deguchi
Yip Dick
Yen Chow
Chow Wen Hing
Tracy Ng
Ann Rowena Lim
Myo Min Htun
Charlie Bogosoff
Gracie Mary
Ser Kiong Tan
Chee Chien


DAISY KOH [MRS] said...

You should tell your story at Halloween Andy.

Yes, Niagara is breathtaking…had never seen so much water before …amazing…remember walking through a tunnel or cave …reached a landing where we could stretch out our hands and feel the coldness of the water that came thundering down from above the landing … this was as close as we could get apart from the Maid of the Mist…on the American side… awesome. 😁

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

hi. Yes, it was an experience to enjoy and recall if it weren't for my own folly to loiter so late. It has been categorised under 'Halloween' on the 'Content' Column.

Thanks for the description. You explained it so well.


Lady in red, what an experience. I would laugh if the source was second, third or fourth hand. But this is your own, I am petrified.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

hi. Indeed. Go early and leave early. Best advice if anyone wants to visit it.
Even Henri Gann from California confirmed it. Thanks for the cute comment.