There’s a basement bar in City Market known as Pour Larry’s. Not only is this popular pub known for featuring local musicians and cheap drink specials, it’s also known to be haunted by an usually stinky ghost.

The unforgettable nauseous smell of burnt flesh is often combined with unexpected flying drinking glasses aimed at employee’s heads by unseen forces. The overall ‘bad vibes’ experienced in Pour Larry’s, and the unexplainable stench can only mean one thing; it’s haunted by a previous owner, John Montmollin.

John Montmollin was a wealthy plantation owner who owned the brick building at 206 west Jullian Street. He also operated a slave trade business out of this location and kept slaves in the basement. He was an evil sinister man who didn’t treat people fairly and had a devious reputation for crooked dealings. He financed the building of the sailing vessel, The Wanderer, to import slaves. Since it was illegal to bring Africans directly into Georgia The Wanderer secretly wandered up and down the coast with its human cargo. But eventually the ship was confiscated and his lucrative business ended. He was not sent to prison or fined, but instead confined for a week to his luxurious apartment above his business office in City Market. He continued other distasteful rat business ventures for many years after.

And here is how John Montmollin became Savannah’s Stinky Ghost. On June 9th 1859 he was aboard the steamer, J.G. Lawton, 20 miles up the Savannah River when the ship’s boiler exploded and he was killed. He was found two days later with his head and upper body stuck in pluff mud and his legs sticking up like stiff boards. He was burned to a crisp and, after rotting in the Georgia sun for two days, he stunk to high heaven.

But heaven is not where John Montmollin went. Instead he went back to his place of corrupt business to stink up the basement with his rotten burnt flesh smell. He’s not a very happy bar patron (a disgruntled business owner gone mad) and makes his presence known by busting up glasses, stinking up the place and giving off some really ‘bad vibes’.

If you visit Pour Larry’s for a drink and you get an uneasy feeling, and your nose is accosted by the disgusting odor of burnt flesh then perhaps John Montmollin is sitting on the bar stool next to you, or maybe somebody just farted.

In Savannah ya just never know.

It’s all in what you believe …

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Fish Karma

BlogArtFishKarmaI was doing my power-walk around the neighborhood. I was fashionably attired in my stretchy pants, scrunchy top, florescent headband, moisture absorbent socks, and impact power sneakers. I had my iPod velcroed to my upper-arm, ear buds jammed into my ears, and I listened to a motivational power audio book.

I was power walking, power thinking and doing everything in power time. I was full of power!

I reached the lagoon at the mid-point of my workout that I designated my power break. I stretched my legs, flexed my arms, rolled my shoulders, and I was about to arch my back when, only two feet away, a fish flew out of the water and landed on the rocks by the lagoon.

I stopped my power everything and stared in amazement at the little colorful tropical fish. It was absolutely beautiful! It flopped around trying to find water and then, having lost the battle, it lay still gasping for life with little fish lips.

I removed my ear buds and stepped closer to the edge of the lagoon for a better look. My assessment of the dire situation was: this fish would die. It did not have the strength to return to the lagoon. The hot Georgia sun would soon bake it as crispy as potato chip. Or a bird would swoop down and gobble it up. The only way this fish would survive would be by intervention.

There was no doubt in my mind what I had to do; save the fish.

I removed my power sneakers and my moisture absorbent socks. I climbed easily down the rocky embankment and gently scooped up the brightly colored fish. I admired it in my hand for only a moment before I carefully placed it in the water. “Go back where you belong little fishie,” I said.

I guess I expected a gratitude smile bubble or at least a goodbye flip of its tail, but it darted off quickly and disappeared. I did not really need a thank you. I was content and happy knowing I did the right thing.

As I continued with my power walk my steps slowed to a casual walk and I pondered the true essence of fish karma. I had been in the right place at the right time to make a difference and although my action seemed simple to me, it had made a huge difference to another’s life.

Good fish karma is the ripple effect of doing something small, but the outcome is enormous. Take time to make a difference in the world.