Ghost hunting in Menlo Park

In the spirit of Halloween, my friend and host Lori Palfreeman drove me past the nearest reputed haunted house in her area – Peninsula School in Menlo Park. It was around 9 at night when we rolled through the affluent neighborhood and idled the engine outside this elegant old mansion-turned-school.

The legend goes: a man built this for his bride, Carmelita Coleman, in 1880. She was killed by a gunshot wound. Her spirit now haunts the place, along with other possible spirits. This website has a longer explanation:

The gate was chained, so we sat in the Corvette and looked in from the street. The foyer was brightly lit, but the rest of the building was dark. We stared and stared for a few minutes, but we saw nothing.

“OH!” Lori cried. 

“WHAT?!” I exclaimed, rising out of my seat. I am, truth be told, a scaredy cat. I wouldn’t know what to do if I actually saw a ghost. And I lack the ability to see ghosts.

“Let’s take photos with our phones and see if we capture any orbs or images!” she suggested, delighted with her improv sleuthing skills. 

So we did. We each shot a dozen or so photos from different angles, rolling the car forward a foot at a time. 

In the end, we don’t believe we got anything on camera, though someone I know with psychic ability says she sees something in this photo. If you’re psychic, do you see it, too?

More about the actual school here:

Diane Ako

Peace of mind By Diane Ako I like to reflect on life. Sometimes it’s philosophically. Sometimes it’s humorously. For all its beauty, life is far too difficult a journey to take alone. You need the support and connection with others to help carry you along the way. Writing brings me that connection– within and without. It clarifies my thoughts and feelings. It helps me reach out to others for advice, wisdom, or feedback. Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions become you. A wise yogi- Patanjali- said, “Speak what is true. Speak what is pleasant.” Let’s speak of things pleasant to one another and seek some peace of mind along the way. ABOUT Diane Ako joined Hawaii: In Real Life in October 2016. She likes being part of a community of local bloggers – people who like writing and sharing, like she does. Ako is an anchor/ reporter at Island News (KITV4 – ABC) in Honolulu. She previously anchored and reported at KHON2 (FOX) and KHNL (NBC), and at stations in California, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania. She freelance writes for NMG Network's magazines. In between news jobs, in 2017, she launched and ran her own p.r. company, Diane Ako PR. From 2010-2014, she headed the public relations department at Halekulani Corporation, which oversees luxury resort Halekulani and boutique hotel Waikiki Parc. She’s been blogging since 2009 – before Hawaii: IRL, she wrote for The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the state’s largest daily newspaper, where her stories garnered a dozen journalism awards and an Emmy nomination. Ako has a BA in Communications from Menlo College and an MA in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa. She volunteers as a board member of the Honolulu Gay & Lesbian Cultural Foundation, a Shinto shrine maiden at Daijingyu Temple, a citizen-scientist studying shrimp, and a yoga teacher at a senior center.

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