Adelaida Cemetery has had a reputation for being one of the most haunted cemeteries in California, if not the entire country. I have always been skeptical about the concept of a place being haunted. Arriving at Adelaida from the nearest town, one can see how someone would think that it is haunted. Located in a desolate area in wine country, it is accessible down a narrow, winding back road that slowly gets enveloped by moss draped oak trees that makes you feel like you are driving into a horror film. Once arrived, that feeling overwhelms you as you notice it is completely reasonable to think that the oak covered cemetery situated on a hilltop is the perfect setting for such a movie. Entering Adelaida, picking up on seemingly unexplainable smells of flowery perfume and sounds of rustling footsteps while completely alone for miles around builds the suspense; however, upon close examination of the cemetery, all that suspense goes away when potted flowers placed on graves and rodent tunnels are discovered — dismissing such sensory inputs as psychosomatic. Once acquainted with Adelaida, that “horror film” feeling still persists while a sense of peacefulness surrounds you once you notice the beauty of the cemetery and surrounding areas once you forget about the ghost stories. The presence of these juxtaposed feelings is a logical reason for Adelaida’s lasting reputation and mythology.
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