I’m a bit of an anomaly; I started drinking coffee at nine, didn’t like cake till my late teens, and routinely wear authentic Disney Princess dresses (except on Halloween of course), so it’s no surprise that I’m drawn to the unusual.
My latest offbeat obsession is restaurants. That is to say, haunted restaurants. And, to my delight, there is no shortage of them right here in Connecticut!
And so I found myself at Captain Daniel’s Inne in Mystic.
Approaching at sunset it’s easy to imagine this place as an inne of yesteryear, a midsize country farmhouse with soft glowing windows offering rest for the weary traveler, but that is where the time traveling experience ends. Inside, The Daniel Packard Inne
is a shining example.
In their kitchen the owner is constantly observing, making sure everything is perfect for his customers. And when I say owner I’m not talking about a member of the Kiley family (who purchased the inne in 1979 and are still running the place), I’m talking about Captain Daniel Packer himself. Captain Packer never really left his beloved inne, though I’m not sure it explains why mugs and glasses move (seemingly) on their own. Perhaps the Captain disagrees with the staff as to their proper place? After all, if you want something done right, you simply have to do it yourself, dead or not.
And then there’s Aida, Captain Packer’s precocious niece. Aida Bryan Clift tragically died at seven years old in her bedroom on the second floor of the Daniel Packer Inne of Scarlet Fever leading some people to believe her spirit is forever tethered to the property. No one knows why this happens; some people theorize that spirits tend to linger in places where they once felt comfortable and safe, others believe the spirits stick around because they have an agenda…
And miss Aida definitely has an agenda! Everyone at the inne has stories to tell about the fun loving kid who fills the inne with disembodied laughter, runs through rooms for no apparent reason, waves at people from her bedroom window, causing them to inquire about the cute little girl (which is a great way to attract business if you ask me), and iniates games of hide and seek with children visiting the restaurant. And, obviously, the stairwell is the ideal place for the jump scare.
If you’re looking for a place where you instantly feel like you belong, where you can’t tell a tourist from a local, where you are invited to grab a chair and a drink not only by the current staff…but by the (original) owner as well! If your lucky you might even be invited to a game of hide and seek, which, for the record, you’re never too old for…