When I read the Think Kit prompt to write about an experience with a stranger, one particular story popped into my head, and it still scares me to think of it. Everything about this story is strange, but hang in there with me.
I’ve always set an alarm to be the first one awake, so I can have that quiet time alone in the morning. It was often my habit to sit in our window seat, covered in a blanket and sipping my coffee, just thinking and daydreaming. One morning, in the glare of the streetlight, I could see a coyote trotting down the middle of the street. Yep, a coyote in the pre-dawn dark, running towards College Avenue in Broad Ripple as if he did it every day.
Naturally, the next morning I was in my spot, watching for him, and sure enough – at the same time, he came running down the street again. Now my mornings had intrigue and mystery!
On the third morning, I was determined to see if he actually crossed College or if he had a hiding place near my house. As I’m gazing towards the streetlight, waiting for my coyote, I spot something in my peripheral vision, closer to my house. I turned to look, and there was a stranger standing in the street. He wasn’t walking a dog, and he wasn’t dressed for running. He was dressed in a newsboy-type cap, a windbreaker, and khakis. His hands were in his pockets, he was facing me, and he was LOOKING AT ME. You know that fear that instantly coils in the pit of your stomach? Yet the sensible part of my brain reasoned that he can’t possibly see me, sitting in the dark – he’s probably just looking at the house. I moved my face to the next window, and his head turned to keep eye contact. Like something right out of a Steven King novel, it was weird and creepy at the same time. I bolted upstairs.
Of course the man had disappeared by the time I awakened my husband to look out the window. That always happens in the scary stories, right?