The Traveling Shoes

This story, from Sharon Catley, is one of the oddest I’ve heard. It’s ghostly, but so weirdly eerie it could fit into any number of categories.

I worked at the same company for 33 years. During that time I was moved into several different office locations within the same building. My department consisted of three offices – Mine, another coworkers and a large foyer that was used for storage. One of the things that were stored in that room were these special safety shoes. They were made of rubber and were kind of like galoshes with steel toes that you could put over your regular shoes to enter areas of our location that required additional safety.

There were about 10 pairs in various sizes and colors. We would laugh because they looked a bit like clown shoes. Anyway every morning when we came into work the shoes which had been stored on a two level shelf would be all over the floor. They stayed in place on the shelves all day but every morning they were off-the-shelf.

One morning I was just arriving and had not had a chance to pick up the shoes yet when the payroll lady came in to talk to me. She asked what the shoes were doing all over the floor? I told her the story. She was of Asian descent and said that in their culture this would be the sign of a ghost and that shoes in the house are considered bad luck. The shoes continued to be jumping off onto the floor for the next few years until it was decided to do a rearrangement of that storage foyer. The shelf with the shoes was placed at the opposite end of the room and for some reason the shoes suddenly ceased their night time wandering.

We had done quite a thorough investigation before to see what the cause for this movement might be (breezes or being moved by the night janitor but he did not come every night) We later learned that the ashes of a former employee had been stored in the shelves original spot. The urn had been brought to facilitate the scattering of the ashes at sea but had been forgotten there behind some boxes. It had been found and removed just before we and the shoes moved into those offices. The payroll lady and I concluded that the ghost of the person whose ashes had been there felt disrespected by us placing those stinky shoes in his area. The shoes have since been moved into a closet just outside these offices and are still behaving themselves. Just thought this was an interesting event and wanted to share.

Sharon later sent a postscript to this story, a bit of explanation:

The reason that the lady brought the urn to us was we are a marine transportation company and the employee whose ashes were in the urn had worked for us for many years. The urn was left in the storage room for a number of years as well. Perhaps another reason for the ghost’s displeasure was having to sit in the urn for so long, forgotten while he had been expected to be out floating freely in the Pacific Ocean. And maybe he was just expressing his displeasure by tossing the shoes around.

A bit of a trickster spirit, that one!


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3 Responses to The Traveling Shoes

  1. Robmacgregor says:

    Wonder where his family was. Strange having one’s ashes end up at work and next to some shoes.

  2. lauren raine says:

    What a great story! But it makes me sad to think that a man who worked for many years, maybe decades, in a company, was so forgotten and unloved that his ashes were kept in a closet and a promise to offer respect to the deceased by scattering the ashes in the ocean was forgotten. No wonder this restless spirit was pissed off!

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