Our Spooky Tales: A Presence in New Orleans

by Pam Renteria

4 min readSep 29, 2023

October is one of our favorite months of the year. These are our favorite scary stories to share with each other when sitting around a campfire or when traveling together for work.

I have so many interesting paranormal and spirit-related stories but my favorite to tell friends is my visit to New Orleans in 2017.

My husband and I were visiting the city for the first time and booked a rental next to the race track where the famous New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival takes place every year. For context, my husband likes to say that I’m sensitive to spirits because I’m quick to mention if buildings and rooms feel “off” and share offputting encounters I’ve had throughout my life. This trip was a turning point for both of us and our self-proclaimed obsession with the paranormal.

We tried to stay in this rental for three nights. From the moment we got into the one-bedroom apartment, something felt off. There was an energy in the bedroom that felt as if something or someone was not happy we were there and wanted us out immediately. The room was decorated modestly with a wardrobe (that I didn’t dare open), an armchair, a bed, and two bedside tables. It felt like we were being watched from both the bedroom closet and the wardrobe at the same time. I’ve sensed an energy similar to this in other locations before but nothing to this extreme. I asked my husband if he felt it too and he said something along the lines of, “It’s probably creeping you out that it’s an older space”. So I tried my best to not let it get to me or acknowledge it and pushed it to the back of my mind to enjoy our vacation.

We spent every day exploring the city and partaking in the Bourbon Street scene at night. We would get back home late and my husband would usually doze off to sleep while I got ready for bed. This was our pattern the first two nights and I hated being the only one awake in this space. At this point, I could feel the negative energy in the bedroom getting stronger. It felt as if we were being watched from a wardrobe in the corner of the room. I did my best to ignore whatever was in the room with us, take my strongest melatonin pills, and distract myself as I went to sleep while Parks and Rec played loudly from my tablet. (Because who would dare try to haunt me while Leslie Knope was problem-solving??)

Our last night got cut short because, in an unexpected turn of events, I was the first to fall asleep this time. I was awoken at 4 in the morning by my husband and I will never forget the look of terror on his face as he woke me up and said, “You’re right. We need to leave right now.”

Turns out he had been tossing and turning all night and had been feeling a weird “I’m being watched feeling” from the corner where the wardrobe was facing the bed. For context, we always joke that my husband can fall asleep anywhere, so at the time, this was extra alarming. He couldn’t fall asleep for hours in the eerie silence, and felt so desperate to leave that he had to wake me up. I didn’t think twice about it and we threw everything into my car, driving out of town around 4:30 am.

It’s by far one of the spookiest experiences I’ve had, but my favorite part of the story is that we survived… and then we stopped by Cafe Du Monde to pick up coffee and beignets before our long drive back to Austin. Once home, my husband confessed that he hadn’t believed in the paranormal until he experienced it firsthand in New Orleans.

There is nothing Pam loves more than storytelling and spending time talking to people about their favorite things. Her passion for pop culture and community building has been the backbone of her 9+ years of experience in public relations, social media, and marketing. Her past lives include Schlitterbahn, SXSW, and the Long Center for the Performing Arts. When she’s not online, she likes to hike with her dog & catch the latest movies.




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