Kilronan, Aran Islands, Ireland
by Shane M
(Cobh, County Cork, Ireland)
I have never "officially" reported this to anyone but it has been on my mind that I should do so because it was such an unusual experience.
About 15 years ago when I was in college I went with a friend for the weekend to Inishmore, the largest of the Aran Islands, off the west coast of Ireland. After a night in some of the local pubs we went back to our hostel. On the way we stopped at what appeared to be a large and very old bordered grave by the side of the laneway. It was very dark. Not very wisely, probably because of the fact we had both had a few drinks, we sat down inside this grave and smoked a cigarette. I can distinctly remember feeling troubled and having a thought that I was going to see something strange. The next instant there appeared the image of a woman on the road end of the grave. Only the top half of her body was visible (which means, given the topography, half her legs were in the ground!) and she was indistinct but it was clearly a woman with long hair. She was translucent and slightly glowing as if she was composed of mist (like your classic ghost really). She appeared to be brushing or stroking her hair or at least her hand was moving up and down the side of her head. The image lasted only a few seconds, she then turned towards the trees, moved a few feet and just vanished into the air.
I was very excited by all this (although my friend was freaked out and for years didn't want to talk about it) and I stopped a local and told him what we had seen. He said, "Oh yeah, that's the banshee," as if it happened every day. I think he thought we were nuts or drunk or both. In any case my understanding of the banshee legend is that she is supposed to shriek and someone in your family will die soon afterwards. Neither happened in this case.
I am not religious and this experience has not changed that. However I am adamant it did happen. Some people I have told have dismissed it as an alcohol fueled hallucination. I would be willing to entertain this as a possibility (although I have been plenty drunker since and never hallucinated anything, ghosts or otherwise!) If it weren't for the fact that we both saw the same thing.
I think the odds against the same hallucination being seen by two people are pretty small!
I have been meaning to go back to the location and see does anything happen and I will one day.
Hope this adds something useful to your collection!