I once worked in a nursing home that was ancient. I mean really ancient. And it looked like a haunted house. Probably because it was. Haunted that is.
The interior wasn’t much better than the exterior. There were places you could step on the floor and it would sink a little bit. Dark corners abounded. You expected to see cobwebs and Morticia Addams around every corner.
The building had been around so long it had had at least three iterations. The ghost seemed to be attached to the first iteration, and fortunately stayed on the top floor, which was unused except for storage. But nobody wanted to go to the top floor to get anything out storage, for some reason.
When it was built, the building was a rooming house. I understand that mostly coal miners stayed there, and they had “working women” on the top floor for the convenience of the miners. Or so I heard. At any rate, the ghost was supposed to be one of these girls. I never saw her, but then I’m not very visual with psychic phenomena. I’m more likely to hear or feel them. But my skin still crawled every time I had to go up to the storage room.
The residents in this place were almost as spooky as the building. The corporate office, somewhere in who knows where, decided to make money by making the nursing home a head trauma center. Only problem was that they didn’t give the staff any training on handling people with head trauma. And some of those folks can be hard to handle. More than once we had to call the cops to arrest one of the residents who had gone off his nut. Usually it would take four or five big, burly officers to get them out of the building. And they’d boomerang back when they settled down, until somebody finally recognised that we couldn’t handle them. I didn’t like to go to the third floor, either.
Most of the rest of the residents on the other floors were about as old as the building. Some of them should have been dead years ago, but were being kept “alive” by their families. IMHO, tube feeding a 95 year old with Alzheimer’s who doesn’t seem to respond to any stimuli is just wrong. By the time most people get to this stage they have run through any money they had put away, and are guests of the state. Make out your living will, folks, so that YOUR wishes are followed.
The ones who were responsive were even more fun. Families would insist that mom be given huge calcium pills for her osteoporosis. We’d have to crush them and put them in applesausce. And I’d usually end up wearing it all over my uniform. You really needed an Haz-Mat suit to work there. Dad was even more fun. He was grabby. More than once I went home with big bruises on my boobies.
Of course, a lot of the residents were just sweet little old things. They don’t stick in your mind, however. Unless they didn’t start out that way, like Miss Sally. Then you remember.