Throughout my travels the one question that I am asked on a regular basis, aside from what is the craziest thing I have seen, is what is it like being on a paranormal investigation team? Unfortunately there isn’t a one or two sentence answer for a question like that. As with any job, and I do mean "job", there is both exhausting and very rewarding aspects to the field.
The preliminary stages of an investigation are filled with client interviews and research searching through old newspapers and books and contacting local historians for any information on the site of interest is very time consuming and at times turns out to be fruitless due to lack of information recorded. Luckily, we have a handful of team members that help in that process so that way we have as much data as we can before our investigation begins. Even during the investigation, it is filled with long hours of waiting for activity, collecting a large amount of data, and debunking most of what we find. Plus, we conduct our investigations in the middle of the night and most of us have families and day jobs which can take a bit of getting used to. The most draining component of our job is in our post investigation analysis. Our team spends countless hours watching video, scanning through photographs, and listening to EVPs searching for evidence. Even after the evidence has been accumulated, it has to be further analyzed and scrutinized. This method may be tedious, but it is very thorough. Then after we have made our final decision, we present our findings. Oh no! We do not stop there! We have to promote, advertise, keep up with social media and other websites, and find all sorts of paths leading to favorable PR which can be tricky in this racket. In conclusion, what we do is exponentially time consuming the larger we grow as an organization. This is definitely a labor of love sort of gig.
With that being said, having been a part of the Thames Society of Paranormal Investigations definitely has been 100% worth it and I am proud to be in the field for many positive reasons that far outweigh the bad. I have learned so much since I started with T.S.P.I. so many years ago and not just about the paranormal field either. These experiences have taught me quite a bit about American history and have given me the opportunity of extensive “behind the scenes tours” of these rich locations. Even the residences that we have investigated have led me through avenues where I found out a lot about a local area’s antiquity that I might not have acquired otherwise. Another rewarding factor is that I am working in a profession that has always interested me and hopefully will give me a little incite as to what went on during some of the paranormal experiences that I have endured in my lifetime. Although these are very beneficial to me the most profitable is the team itself. During these past years, I have come to know and love each and every member. Every one of us has our own talents and areas of expertise that make this group so extraordinary and wonderful to work in.
Usually when I explain to someone that I am a paranormal investigator their assumption is that we just explore cemeteries and sneak into abandoned buildings with a camera or camcorder and mess around with friends. So, when they ask the question “What is it like to be a paranormal investigator?” the answer is never quite what they expect.
Associate Director & Photographer
Thames Society of Paranormal Investigations