25 June 2008, JellyBean @ 3:16 am

Brick cells in the Tuol Sleng Genocide MuseumFeeling a bit shaken from my experience in the V.I.P. room, I made my way to the next level.

It was here that lines of prisoners were kept chained together. They were not allowed to talk to each other and were brutally beaten and electrocuted for the most minor of offenses.

The hall was pitch dark and I had to use the torch which I was still clutching onto for dear life. I walked slowly down the length of the now empty hall but saw and felt nothing out of the ordinary. I decided to move on to the next building. As I came to the door, out the corner of my eye I swear I glimpsed movement about halfway along the hall. Whether this was ghost, shadow person or imagination I have no idea but when I looked properly, it was gone.

Even though the evening was warm, I shivered as I walked down the stairs to exit the building. What had I heard? What had I seen?

I made my way past the outside torture area and prepared to enter the second building. This building housed the middle-tier prisoners. Each prisoner was housed in a tiny brick or wooden cell. Again, they were not allowed to talk or even groan loudly after they had been tortured.

I decided to go into the ‘brick’ cell area first. The passage between the cells was dimly lit from the outside light. The first thing I noticed when entering the passage was that the temperature dropped noticeably. I had not noticed this when I had been there earlier in the day. Could this be a presence?

Brick cells in the Tuol Sleng Genocide MuseumSlowly, I walked down the passage, shining my torch into each cell. These cells did not have a door, just a small opening. At the end of the passage I stopped, switched the torch off and turned to go back. Again, out the corner of my eye, I saw a flitter of movement in the closest cell. As I looked in the cell, again I saw a movement in the passage. However, each time I looked there was nothing there.

Quickly, I left the room and made my way to the ‘wooden’ cell room.

Wood Cells in the Tuol Sleng Genocide MuseumThis room is pitch black. Unlike the ‘brick’ cells, these ones had doors with tiny windows in them. Prisoners were kept in virtual darkness and again, no talking or moaning was allowed.

On entering the room, I felt an uneasiness with a definite sense of foreboding in the air. I was feeling decidedly uncomfortable. However, I decided to continue.

I walked slowly up the passage between the cells, opening the door and looking into each one. As I moved along, the temperature started to drop as in the ‘group’ hall. After a few minutes, I reached the end of the passage. Again, I focussed on the energies of the place and still got the strange uneasiness and foreboding.

As I was about to walk back along the passage, I heard a slow, long creaking sound. I quickly shone the torch’s beam onto the area. The door of the cell closest to the exit was slowly closing.

Cell door at Tuol Sleng (photo by Djeyli)“It must have been left slightly open when I looked inside” I thought. But before the thought had finished, the next door started swinging slowly open! A second later the next door started moving. It was as if a wave of activity was heading directly for me and there was nowhere I could go!

Suddenly, everything went quiet. Part of me wanted to run out, but part of me was morbidly fascinated by what could still happen. Before I could make the decision the door furthest from me started banging. Bang! Bang! Bang! Bang! Silence.

“Oh sh!t” I thought. “What the hell do I do if I am caught here with an angry ghost!?!”

I started edging my way toward the exit, suddenly realising how narrow the passage was. As I reached the third door from the end, it started rattling slowly, as if wind was blowing on a closed door, or something inside the cell wanted to get out!

This was all the motivation I needed to get the heck out of there! I ran toward the exit and as I reached it, the sound stopped. I paused to look back down the passage, saw nothing, and left hurriedly!

To be continued …

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