I was intrigued to read recently that strange things have been happening in Dunedin.

Which isn't to say there is something disturbing or wayward about that fine town — it's more about the unexplainable.

I like the unexplainable...have done since I was a youngster.

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"Explain yourself young fellow," the growling teacher demanded as me and a couple of other kids got rounded up at primary school for throwing water at some of the girls.

"I can't sir," was generally the standard reply.

So when I got home and gave the note from the teacher to dad he'd ask "why were you throwing water at the girls?" and I'd sort of wither and shrug and say something along the lines of "I can't really explain".

Being a chap who liked to sort things out quickly and without undue fuss he'd usually reply with something like "oh they were probably asking for it anyway" and then mum would come in and say "well there's no need to throw water at them" and dad would reply "well at least it wasn't milk...it's gone up to fourpence a bottle now."

And the time I was picked up by a traffic chap while barrelling on two wheels through Dannevirke on the way to the Boxing Day bike races at Wanganui many years back.

"Can you explain why you were doing 122km/h mate?" he asked.

"No I can't," I replied as the pen in his right hand went to work.

Yep, some things can't be explained.

However, the inexplicable happenings of this latest story to emerge revolved around unseen things...which were doing seen things.


Ghosts which are apparently residing in the grand old Regent Theatre down there in the south.

A couple of weeks back, in a dark and unoccupied upstairs function room, a tap turned on in the dead of night and the resulting torrent of water flooded the venue.

It was the second time a tap had mysteriously turned itself on, and the watery events added to other "unexplained" incidents involving lights and fans suddenly turning on.

As one of the theatre crew remarked...there was no one to point the finger of blame at because no one had been around at the time the taps and lights sparked into life.

How marvellous to have ghostly mysteries shrouding such an old and atmospheric theatre which is now in its 90th year.

The questions have been asked...could it be the work of the previous residents of that site?

For the theatre had replaced the Ross Building which was destroyed by fire in 1879, claiming the lives of a dozen people.

Some have suggested that while their physical bodies may have been taken away their spirits were still restless and perhaps frustrated over their unwanted fates...so they were making the occupants of the site today aware of that.

Hey, it makes a good story, and good theatres always need good stories to keep the punters wandering through the doors.

I'm five each way about ghosts like I'm five each way about anything that can't be explained and therefore can't be entirely dismissed.

There have been some famous sightings of these restless entities although I've never heard of any seen wearing a sheet with two silly eyeholes in it.

Kind of like flying saucers.

Until someone can come up with absolutely 100 per cent unarguable proof that they can't or don't exist then I'll keep my options open.

Until one turns up in the backyard.

Ditto for ghosties...because I like a bit of mystery.

However, anyone seeking proof across the landscape of Google images can forget it.

Oh there's a lot of photos allegedly of ghosts posted on there and many have been published in some leading papers across the globe, but so many appear just too eerie, too staged, to be plausible, while others simply leave you pondering that in this day and age of digital sorcery anyone can do anything to a photographic image.

I have only had one real brush with the unexplained.

Many, many years ago when I was working at the wool stores I went up to the bar after work, as it was my round, and I went to get the $10 note out but it had disappeared.

And no one believed me.

Gosh it was spooky.