About twenty years ago, we visited the very beautiful city of Taos in New Mexico. We stayed at Luan House, which had been turned into a hotel. It was a magnificent villa built in the regional style popular during the 1920s and 1930s by an American art patron millionaire, Mabel Dodge. Everyone of any significance in the arts or literary circles was a guest of Mabel’s. A frequent guest at the house painted the windowpanes in our bathroom: a certain D.H. Lawrence.
One day, towards the end of lunch, I left the table to go and take my nap. “Don’t close the lock,” Marina said, “so that I won’t have to bother you when I come up to join you.” So, I took great care not to push the old-fashioned latch across, and I went to sleep. Shortly thereafter, someone angrily knocking on the door woke me. It was Marina. “Open the latch” – “But I didn’t close it” – “Yes, you did.” Following our gruff exchange, I did indeed get up and went over to the door: the latch was closed. I was absolutely certain not to have closed it. I opened the door for Marina who was not in the best of moods, as was I.
Shortly thereafter, when I went down to the reception desk, I told the director about this strange incident. “What! She’s at it again!” was her reply. And she told me that the room’s ghost was that of the owner Mabel Dodge and very often she found it amusing to close that door latch. She usually did so when there was no one in the room, which meant that management had to call a locksmith. “This time however, she has been generous with you. You were inside, and able to open the lock yourself…”.