Apr 06, 2016 I Nick Redfern

Pill-Poppers of the Paranormal Kind

As my forthcoming book on the subject reveals, the mid to late 1960s was a period when encounters with the Women in Black reached near fever pitch levels. While there were a few earlier cases, for the most part it all began in the spring of 1967. That was when reports began to surface of black - and also gray - garbed "gypsy women" roaming around certain, quieter parts of New York. They clearly weren’t regular gypsies, however. That much was made clear by the fact that they regularly targeted those who had undergone UFO encounters. Odder still, and on more than a few occasions, the alleged gypsy women were seen in the dead of night, standing as still as statues and staring malevolently into the homes of people who claimed close encounters with alien entities. Attempts to confront them were often met with outright hostility – something which made even the homeowners back away in fear.

One of the weirdest of all the early 1967 cases occurred in the vicinity of Melville, New York, and involved a rancher whose farm was located in a rural, isolated part of town. Only days before he received a most unwelcome visit, the man saw a definitive flying saucer hovering over one of his fields. Somewhat amazingly, and according to the man himself, what was described as a "ladder" was seen hanging from its underside. At least, until the ladder was hastily retracted and the saucer shot away, high into the sky, and vanished from view. That was hardly the end of the matter, however. Something stranger, and far more sinister, was looming on the horizon.


Just a few days later, the man heard a knock at the door. Given that his home was in the middle of pretty much nowhere, he opened the door both slowly and cautiously. Stood before him was a "Gypsy lady" who was dressed in a gray dress that reached her ankles and who wore sandals. Just like so many of the Men in Black, her skin was noted for its deep, olive complexion, and (also like the MIB) her eyes were described as "Oriental." The rancher added that the woman stood around five-feet and four inches tall, and had long hair that was "so black" it "looked dyed."

The woman said to the more than slightly alarmed man: "I have traveled a long way. May I have a glass of water? I must take a pill." Baffled, the man decided not to risk incurring her wrath and quickly fetched her a glass of water. He watched as she swallowed a round, green-colored pill. She then thanked him, turned around, and walked away – which the man found very strange, given that he lived on a back road, and walking to the nearest town would have been an arduous task, to say the very least.

John Keel 570x792
John Keel

John Keel said of this acutely odd and disconcerting episode (in the pages of his 1971 book, Our Haunted Planet): "'I have traveled a long way' is an old Masonic pass phrase and is frequently used in these contacts." Keel added the following: "The pill-taking ploy is also a common procedure. When a most peculiar being visited a family on Cope May, New Jersey, early in 1967, he also took a pill. He too had 'traveled a long way,' and after conducting an inane interview with the family, he stepped into the night, got into a black Cadillac, and drove off with the lights out."

In view of all the above, should you ever encounter someone on your doorstep - someone looking and acting more than a bit strange - who needs to pop a pill, it's probably not a good idea to let them in.

Nick Redfern

Nick Redfern works full time as a writer, lecturer, and journalist. He writes about a wide range of unsolved mysteries, including Bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster, alien encounters, and government conspiracies. Nick has written 41 books, writes for Mysterious Universe and has appeared on numerous television shows on the The History Channel, National Geographic Channel and SyFy Channel.

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