Feb 11, 2015


Once I was camping by myself in the woods in Western Germany near the French border. I had hiked remote forest road for a few miles and stumbled across an old German bunker, which wasn't unusual for this area. The top was caved in, but the walls were intact. I climbed around it and peered inside. It was more like a fortified guard shack than a fortress, and I spent some time exploring the two rooms. By the time I had finished, it was starting to get dark and I decided to camp at a spot I had seen a short distance away instead of staying in the bunker. After setting up my tent, I made a small fire and had dinner. Then I settled down to listen to the woods and enjoy nature. The fire burned down to embers and only gave off light when you looked directly at it. You could see the stars through the forest canopy and it got very quiet. At some point I fell asleep next to the fire.

Some time later I awoke. The fog had rolled in and it was so thick you couldn't see more than twenty feet. I couldn't figure out what had woken me up until I heard someone speaking a short distance away: the kind of loud laughing you hear around a campfire as friends share a beer and tell each other lies about the women they've known. It was far enough away that I couldn't follow the conversation, but it seemed to be coming from the bunker. I figured the place must a local hangout for the adventurous and decided to go down, have a look, maybe introduce myself and make some new friends. Moving carefully through the night fog, I made my way down the hill towards the back of the bunker. The laughter was louder as I approached and I started to see what appeared to be kerosene lights.

Just as I was about to say something, it struck me that the roof was back on the bunker. And the figures moving around the light appeared to be dressed in gray uniforms. I froze in place and watched for a few minutes as they appeared to play cards and joke with one another. I'm certain they were wearing Nazi uniforms. I backed away and quietly made my way to my camp. I checked the fire, but it was out. I spent the next several hours awake listening to the them. Then the fog began to clear out and sound faded away.

In the morning, I could see down the hill to the bunker and the roof was caved in again. And there was no sign anyone was there. Was it my imagination? Or a Nazi reenactment group (which is illegal in Germany)? I don't think so. I'm convinced the fog opened a window back to an obscure checkpoint on a wooded road into France. And several bored soldiers were passing a quiet night while waiting for any vehicles that happened to drive by.

That's not the only time I've seen something in a deep fog I can't explain. It's like a bridge between worlds. When it's so thick you can't see ten feet in front of your face, I try not go outside anymore.

Story source.

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