When I was 20 years old, in school for photography, I won a contest for a shoot I did for a cologne company. My photos were featured in an art exhibit. It was there that I met a woman. She was about 55 years old, a painter, and came from one of the most influential families in New York. We began to talk and hit it off; it turned out she was also from Yonkers. She offered me a ride home, gave me her number and invited me to come by her estate to take photos of her home and property.

Her estate overlooked the Hudson River and The Palisades. As I wandered the property I began to get bad vibes in certain locations. When I went into her home, the mansion, there was a dark presence about it.The place was filled with things that I would associate with the devil. She brought me upstairs to see her studio. The room looked like a observatory. It was a 360 degree circle with windows from ceiling to floor. The view was amazing during the day and at night.

We became very close and she shared with me a family secret. She explained that her family was part of a secret society which dated back to the dark ages. She said the people in this society where powerful, wealthy, and very influential. The members could help me become a very successful photographer. If I wanted to join she could get me accepted.

I asked her how to join this group. She told me of a ceremony in which I would be required to denounce all that I believed in and devote myself to the dark arts. She spoke of powers that could make me successful and wealthy. She told me that in the basement there was an alter with caverns that led to the river. After the initial ceremony we would go through theses caverns to the river. Once at the river I would be baptized and then return to the alter for the final ceremony.

I told her no thanks, that I would make it as a photographer on my own. She became enraged and told me she would “black list” me and I would never work as a photographer in New York. She told me that she would put a curse on me which I took very seriously. Being Italian I know all about the evil eye and curses.

I went to my aunt who was knowledgeable in these things. She told me that I did have a curse on me and that she would try to remove it. She did her ceremony and said it was gone. I don’t know for sure if I was ever cursed or if my aunt was truly able to remove it, but there have been many times in my life that I have felt like I was still cursed.

Written by Al Santariga, edited and posted by Cyndy Schuessler