It was the summer of 1975
(Note: Monica's friends names in this story were changed)
It was the summer of 1975. I was 10 years old then, soon to be 11. My girlfriend Sandy had invited Claudette and Serene (sisters) and myself to spend the night in a tent in her backyard. Sandy also had a swimming pool which we played in that evening after we had set up our sleeping bags in the tent. As always we tied the rubber dinghy to the stairs in the swimming pool when we finished our swim.
It was still light enough to see clearly as we changed into our pyjamas in the tent. I wore a nightie which buttoned up in front. Sandy had shown us the pretty picture on her new pyjamas which we all admired. Because of Sandys dog, Lady, who was 14 years old, there was a strict rule to keep the gate shut at all times. We all loved Lady and understood it could be dangerous for the dog if we ever left the gate open, so we had always respected that rule. That night, as usual, Lady slept inside the house.
After getting dressed we all came outside the tent to hang our bathing suits and towels on the clothesline. We were standing outside the tent talking when Serene pointed towards the gate and said in an alarmed voice "There's a man standing by the gate!" We all turned and looked towards the gate. There was no man there anymore. One of us then said, "The gate is open!" which we all noticed. Serene said again, "I saw a man standing there, I did." Strangely we all just turned around and went inside the tent and laid down. Then Serene said, "I think it might have been a dog that I saw." With that we went to sleep.
It is so odd that we were unconcerned that there was a man standing there and the gate was open. That simply wasn't normal behaviour for us. We were typical 10 and 11 year old girls. Normally we would have run into the house to tell Sandy's Parents there is some weirdo watching us. It would have given us quite a scare normally, but this wasn't a normal evening.
The next morning when we awoke, Sandy stood up and said, "My Pyjamas are inside out!" Instinctively I looked down and I discovered my nightie was also inside out. I remembered buttoning up my nightie the night before and I thought, 'how is it possible for me to button up my nightie while it is inside out, especially without realizing it?' "Mine is inside out too!" I said. Sandy said, "I know I put my Pyjamas on properly last night. Remember me showing you guys the picture on it?" Claudette's and Serene's clothes were not inside out though. Sandy and I were shocked and confused looking at each other in disbelief. "What happened? How on earth did our clothes get inside out?" we wondered. Claudette was annoyed. "Come on you guys, knock it off. I woke up in the middle of the night and you weren't here. 1 know you're joking around." "What?! You woke up and we weren't here!? Are you SERIOUS!?" Claudette told us she woke up and the porch light was on and we were gone, so she figured we must have gone into the house to use the bathroom. By this time Sandy and I were looking at each other with our mouths hanging open and our eyes popping out, and at the same time laughing. We were a little hysterical.
We went outside and found the rubber dinghy floating freely in the pool. Sandy's and my bathing suits and towels were wet, but Claudette's and Serene's were dry. The gate was now closed. All these observations Sandy and I were making were just causing Claudette and Serene to become more fed up with what they thought was some silly charade we were putting on for them. We tried unsuccessfully to convince them that it was no joke. Sandy and I became frustrated from begging them to believe us and we just shook our heads and laughed at our ridiculous situation. (To this day Claudette and Serene still don't believe that we didn't try to set the whole thing up.)
Between the two of us we carefully went over everything that had happened the night before, step by step. (This is why I still remember such details as buttoning up my nightie, etc.)
We finally concluded that the man Serene saw hypnotized us into going for a swim in our sleep. We could think of no other explanation. Since then whenever Sandy and I have bumped into each other we always say "Remember that time.... ? Wasn't that weird?!"
Just recently my husband John had read 'Transformation' and we were discussing the Aliens and peoples' experiences with them. The subject of that night when four of us slept in a tent came up. I always knew that whole evening was quite peculiar, but for the first time it dawned on me just how strange it was. And especially strange that we went to bed unconcerned after Serene said she saw a man standing by the gate and we had all noticed the gate was open. It was also the first time I even considered that possibly we had been abducted. Who knows what really happened? Maybe we just got caught in an episode of 'The Twilight Zone'