A very strange thing happened to me last summer.  As I was driving home from class one evening, I saw what appeared to be an unusually bright light in the sky.  I was waiting to merge into heavy traffic that night, so I spent some time looking at this thing.

Because my studio is situated on the southeast approach to Midway Airport, it’s normal to see a line of commercial aircraft hanging in the sky.  On that particular night, the August sky was very clear and I could see an unbroken line of jets waiting to make their descent into Chicago.  But the brightly lit craft hovering above my car seemed different than the rest.

For one, it had a huge bank of front landing lights, three rows deep, and no vertical stabilizers.  I stared at the thing, not quite sure what to think.  I was puzzled; it seemed too low for a Midway landing yet far too large for the nearby regional airport.

It slowly banked and headed north.  As it turned, I saw the underside of the craft.  It was immense, triangular and covered with multicolored lights, and the hull had a strange sheen.  It wasn’t quite matte and it wasn’t completely reflective.  It seemed to absorb the ambient light about it.

The hair stood up on the back of my neck; this was not a man-made space craft.  I immediately turned the car around to follow it.  It never occured to me to be frightened or concerned with my safety; this was a once-in-a-lifetime moment!  I couldn’t let it slip by.

However, in the ten seconds it took to turn my car around, the strange thing vanished.  It absolutely disappeared from view.  In the wide expanse of prairie about me, there were no treelines to block my sight or hills to provide cover.  The thing had simply gone.

I was crushed.  My one and only close encounter and it was over before I even realized it.  I turned the car around once again and drove home thrilled, but disappointed.  What would I tell my husband?  Would he even believe me?  Would anyone?

My ruminations didn’t last long.  As I drove up a railroad overpass, I again caught sight of my strange quarry.  It was travelling north, lazily parallel to my own route, but the entire craft had turned onto its side, moving vertical to the ground.  A huge strip of tail lights, brilliant white, faced me in the dark.  But I was behind the wheel and couldn’t stop to gawk.

I spied it one last time before I turned off onto my street.  It was still following its north trajectory, heading for the south shore of Lake Michigan in a slow, unhurried manner.  I wondered why the people around me weren’t pointing and exclaiming, and crashing their vehicles in the confusion.  No one but myself seemed to notice it.

My husband ribbed me about my experience.  I don’t think he really believed me until we happened to watch this Discovery Channel program.  It seems I wasn’t the only person who had witnessed the appearance of this strange aircraft, albeit my own was nearly seven years afterward.

I have no lurid story to tell, no tale of alien abduction or weird experiments.  In fact, there is no proof that it was of extraterrestrial origin.  The only result of my encounter is that it left me with a compulsion to write and an unshakable conviction that we are not alone.



  1. Of course we are not alone. Look at the number of planets there are. About your sighting, you are definitely not the only one. I don’t know about the percentages anymore, but there is always a number of sightings you can’t explain away by saying it was just another airplane or satellite. I have been spending my holidays in a part of England that has been known for sightings like this, but I haven’t seen anything of the sort myself yet. But who knows … Anyway, I’m really glad to know that there are still some mysteries that can’t just be explained away by sience. It makes life so much more interesting, don’t you think?

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