Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Ghost in a restaurant

Ghost in restaurantYou never know when you might se a ghost. I was wandering through a shopping mall recently when I noticed someone eating in a restaurant ahead of me. I thought nothing of this unremarkable event until, a second or two later, as I got a little closer I noticed the figure had gone! Indeed, it turned out that the restaurant was closed, dark and empty. And yet the person had been brightly illuminated, moving and very solid-lookingl. So, a hungry ghost then!

Slightly shocked, I walked closer to the restaurant and suddenly saw the ghost again, this time outside the restaurant, eating at a bench.

To see what happened, a diagram (right) helps. I originally saw the ghost at the position marked 'witness'. The ghost was visible in the window of the restaurant at the position marked 'ghost'. The ghost was actually a reflection of the (real) person sitting at a bench marked 'M' on the diagram. I could not see the person from my original sighting position because there was a building (marked 'B') in the way. The 'ghost' was a reflection of the person in the restaurant's window. Crucially, the whole scene was in shadow except for one bit - the person at the bench who was brightly sunlit. Also crucially, the reflection put the person in a place exactly where you'd expect to see someone dining in the restaurant. So this dramatically good ghost effect relied heavily on coincidence, as do so many xenonormal sightings.

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