When I first moved to Maine I was working security at a local hospital. Part of my duties was to patrol the satellite buildings the nearby towns in case there were any break-ins, or something along those lines. Before this time I lived in the Southwestern US near Colorado. I had no exposure to the wildlife in Maine, which leads me to this story.
Every patrol I’d have to stop by this little outpost in the middle of nowhere that I came to call the Umbrella Facility after the Resident Evil mythos. It was a ‘lab’ with way too much stuff on the outside to justify such a small building. I was convinced (still) that there had to be an underground portion of the facility, and if zombies were ever going to appear it would be due to this lab. It was the perfect storm for such a thing too. Thick forest surrounded the building, there were a couple of houses dotting the area, and the nearest buildings that were bigger than a one-story home were either a hotel or a long term care facility. To make matters so much better, there was a disproportionately large parking lot nearby that I also had to patrol.
I would usually get to this building around 2 am, just after the coffee had lost its pull, and as my mind started to get a little funky for being awake. From spring until mid-fall there was this sound when I would get out for my patrol. It almost sounded like a birdcall, but it was two in the freaking morning and all the birds native to the region were asleep. Now, here I am, alone, in the woods, with a freaking flashlight and this sound is all around me. It’s not some gentle hum to lull creatures into a peaceful slumber, it’s practically a screeching heartbeat coming from three different directions.
I thought maybe it was bats. Nope, I never saw a sign of them. I did research on native nocturnal wildlife, but I couldn’t find anything that would match what I was looking for. I even asked my coworkers what it could be and all I got were some very strange looks. It got to the point where I would hardly get out of my vehicle to do the patrol and found every reason to rush through that portion.
Later, a good year or so after I had left that job, I found out that the sound was a native frog call. They like the damp wooded area and that was their mating call. I’m not sure if that knowledge would have helped late at night in the middle of the woods, but in the comfort of my own home it does.
I did learn one thing though: Maine provides plenty of inspiration for horror stories. No wonder Stephen King knocks out like 3 a year.