Drunk/Sober/High: Providence Ghost Tour

Drunk/Sober/High is a series started at New York University’s blog NYULocal. It sends a drunk person, a sober person, and a high person to all go enjoy (and endure) the same experience together. We love it, so we thought we’d give it a try. 


Who says that Providence can’t be spooooooky all year round?! That’s right, no one. Thanks to our lovely friends at Providence Ghost Tour, you can learn about paranormal activity on good ol’ College Hill while partaking in the hour-and-a-half-long walking tour. We sent a few brave souls to hop on a tour to report back on their adventures. All who participated recommend the experience for all fearless Brunonians. Read the highlights after the jump and let the shenanigans ensue.

Thoughts at the start of the tour

Drunk: Morticia Addams meets librarian welcomes a crowd of grannies and tots to an enjoyable treat. Two dudes come late and she welcomes them for being real. Tour guide has nice gloves and is using the word “pow-wow” more than I’d like. The tour is approximately 73% female.
Sober: The tour guide was a big Italian woman with gloves. I wanted her to make me some spaghetti with garlic and Parmesan cheese. She mentioned that Roger Williams was actually buried in the park, but a tree ate all his skin so it’s just his bones. Dark.
High: Well we’re here at Prospect Terrace Park. It’s cold. I’m hungry.

Walking in the Providence streets

Drunk: So many peeps and not enough room to move. That house reminds me of fireside chats.
Sober: I was alternating a little there between being irritated at how long it took to cross the street and being terrified that one of the blonde kids was going to get hit by a drunk driver and that we would end up being some story that ended up in the tour.
High: If I ditch now, I’m only four blocks away from Meeting Street Cafe. There was a murder on Meeting and Prospect? Does that explain why my heart raced every time I walked home to Machado at night last year? No, that’s because I lived in Machado…

Quantum physics of ghosts

Drunk: Whoa there, lady! Introducing quantum physics?! I did not come to Brown for this.
Sober: These blonde women were obsessing over the EMF detector that “detected paranormal activity” and got incredibly excited when it actually went off. I am fairly sure it was the traffic lights. Speaking of being sensitive to ghostly energy, our lovely tour guide pointed out H.P. Lovecraft’s house at the top of College Hill and mentioned that some people who are particularly aware occasionally feel weak in the knees or short of breath when they walk past it. This could, of course, be connected to their having just finished the hike up from downtown  but what do I know?
High: This lady is explaining the existence of ghosts with quantum physics. Matter doesn’t exist in a definitive place, so a spirit can exist outside the body. This makes SO MUCH SENSE.

Orbs and spectres

Drunk: If I capture a ball of light, I have found an orb. Lol, lady that’s called a flashlight.
Sober: Our tour guide stopped us at RISD’s admissions building and told us a harrowing tale of an old man spectre with a long, long, beard and piercing blue eyes who wanders the halls whenever things get rearranged. I think that I got yelled at by a guy on Thayer who fits that description. Also, apparently some RISD students spilled wine in the basement and it looks like a blood stain. Spooky.
High: Can I Instagram an orb? Did a spectre just graze my butt? Nope, someone just bumped into me, never mind. Flog at the other writers for trying to scare me. I am in a delicate state!

One tourist’s obsession with picture-taking

Drunk: Wow, lady whips out the spirit reader and some betch on the tour is already fixing her hair to take a picture with it. Aha! The camera is out. Take it easy there, cowgirl.
Sober: Watching our drunk friend try to explain technology to the blonde women who think that ghosts are interfering with their phones was amusing, to say the least.
High: The lady’s EMF (magnetic field tracing thingy) is going off! Pictures pictures now! I want a pic with a spectre!

People on the tour find an “orb”

Drunk: Betches find an orb. Some old ladies are freaking out, they just don’t know how to use flash.
Sober: I think I have an Instagram filter that does this effect. Also, #BitchesLoveOrbs.
High: Blog crew just called bullshit on a ghost sighting. Ah, is the old woman next to be a spectre? Her big coat and peculiar walk are suspicious.

Brown’s beloved book made of human skin

Drunk: Not sure how I feel about this…
Sober: According to our tour guide, the skin books feel “like butta.” I bet she puts on her Italian garlic bread.
High: “Supple like butter”: words that should never be said to talk about skin. Especially when it’s referring to books bound in human skin.

Thoughts on the ambiguous horse incident near University Hall

Drunk: I am on campus what if my friends see me?! I KNEW UNIVERSITY HALL WAS HAUNTED!! Every time she says “Brown University,” I want to yell, “I go here!” She doesn’t even go here! It’s nice how orb hunting has given me a good excuse to take a whole lot of pictures. I have taken a liking to sitting on the steps under tour lady so I too can be an orb. Apparently horses carry a lot of energy.
Sober: So apparently this guy rode a Revolutionary War horse up the steps of University Hall to make his friends feel better (note: HOW DID THIS NOT BREAK THE STAIRS??) and now people have seen this horse around. My first thought was that was probably the result of some LSD…did this happen on Spring Weekend? Besides, anything happening near University Hall is probably just KBerg playing pranks on people.
High: Nooo, not Brown Campus, noooo! Ghosts are not something I want to add to my list of concerns when I’m walking out of the Rock at 2 a.m. According to this story, a man rode up the stairs of University Hall on a horse. But how did he get back down? Those stairs are narrow. He didn’t die? Are you sure the sound of hooves students hear before meeting with advisors isn’t just the new Scandinavian drumming album reviewed by Pitchfork? #SundayMorningHipster.

The tomb of Ann Mary Brown (and the Buxton party in the background)

Drunk: Kanye’s “The New Workout Plan” and Ann Mary Brown’s tomb are two things I never thought I’d mention in one sentence. First time for everything. Ghost sex was NOT advertised on this tour. Grown-ass lady singing Pitbulls “Hotel Room Service.” DALE.
Sober: I wish I got as much ass as those two…but I could do with some nicer music. Buxton kept playing “Ego” by Beyonce and I couldn’t stop thinking about Jay-Z’s penis while she was talking about ghost sex. I also noticed that one of the figures on the door of the Tomb had really perky nipples.
High: Buxton prepping for a party as we’re listening to the story of Ann Mary Brown and her hubby Rush. Currently playing: “Ego” by Beyonce. You talk like this but he can make it up.

Faculty club dancing ghost:

Drunk: Awkward because the dancing girl on the third floor is me…
Sober: After passing Keeney gym and the ghost of my fat freshman self, we got to the Faculty Club and heard about some crazy pink-dress-wearing slut who keeps terrifying people. Our drunk friend is convinced it’s her, but I’m skeptical.
High: I just really want to go to the Blue Room.

General thoughts

Drunk: If tour lady sings “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah” right now, I will die a happy girl. After all, there is a full moon…on the sabbath.
Sober: Quality tour. Make sure you bring your iPhone to look out for some orbs.

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