Encounter at Saint-Jean-du-Gard

Encounter at Saint-Jean-du-Gard

Date: August 9, 1972

Location: Saint-Jean-Du-Gard, France

A woman, professor of French, and her husband, professor of music, were camping in the south of France in Saint-Jean-Du-Gard when she experienced a close encounter of the third kind.

Apart from the fact that they asked in their vicinity if someone else had seen something, they talked about their experience only to one friend, a student. This student had been interested in the phenomenon UFO for a few years, and the couple knew that he at least would have an opened mind about this matter and would listen to them without scoffing. The student did better than that, he recorded their account on magnetic tape.

2 years later, an investigation of Jean-Paul Guguen, of the French national TV and radio O.R.T.F. in Poitiers, resulted in the discovery of this recording which the student had kept at the bottom of a drawer, among his personal file, and it was then broadcast on February 27, 1974 to 8:30 p.m. in the show Pas de Panique, Donít Panic, of Claude Villiers, Olivier Nanteau and Monique Desbarbat, on the main national radio channel France-Inter.

Here is the transcription of what the French professor woman recorded on this tape:

What I saw happened in Saint-Jean-du-Gard, Wednesday, August 9, 1972, around 2:30 a.m. We had returned rather late that night and camped at friendsí who had a garden in terrace. This garden is on the road to Nimes, at the exit of Saint-Jean-du-Gard. We were on one of the hills bordering the valley. I went outside around 2:30 a.m. because I heard the noises of the party in Saint-Jean-du-Gard.

Above the city I distinguished a rather sharp gleam, produced by the lights of the festival. But, on our side, the sky remained dark. There were large clouds and absolutely no light. All was extinct in the pathways which dominated over the hill. Thus, I was taking some fresh air when my glance was attracted to a sort of white ball, the size of a Fiat Isotta. It puzzled me. It was very shiny. I did not understand how this car could be so shiny whereas all was dark around there and that there was not one light on. This car was parked in small car park reserved to the residents of the 3 or 4 villas built on the hill.

I was observing this car, phosphorescent, while trying to understand why it was so luminous, when I heard footsteps behind me. Odd footsteps, not too close one of another, not too heavy either, as if a child had pressed dry grasses while progressing rather regularly and slowly. Having heard these steps, I turned myself towards the left, at 10' or 15', a shape was turned towards me. I do not want to say a being was looking at me, because, at the time, I did not feel this impression.

This shape measured approximately 3½' of height. It was completely black. A curious fact, was that this body was of parallelepiped typed. It seemed to me, that this form was made out of wood from 14" thickness. This parallelepiped was topped by an ovoid shape in the place of the head. 2 white rounds at the level of the eyes, 2 white rounds of 2" in diameter were the only things which were apparent on this black mass, turned towards me, motionless. I saw neither the feet nor the legs, letís say, what was to be used by it to walk, because the tall grass hid them.

I will never forget the impression I felt, a morbid fear, incredible, not natural. It did not come from me, it seemed emitted by the shape Iíve seen, as if it wanted to neutralize me. I had never felt that before. I had this feeling during 3 seconds approximately, the time that my vision lasted. Nature appeared dead, like frozen, around this thing.

One had the impression that this being exerted an extraordinary power on all that surrounded it, whether animated being or plants. All was reduced to the same state, solidified, I repeat.

Then, I returned in a rush in the tent to join Michel, my husband. At the time, I had not made a connection between this being and the round phosphorescent shaped seen on the car park.

The next day, I started to understand that there was a relationship between the 2. After this short, but powerful vision, we slept.

The next day in the morning, we did not want to speak about it, but finally we asked to the residents of nearby villas if they had not seen anything abnormal. We encountered a total incomprehension. All remained locked up in their prejudices. They tried to rationalize by telling us:

What you saw, was in fact small gravels shining in the night or the lights of motor cycles which passed.

I was sure that that did not have anything to do with what I saw. However, a lady thought about it. She told us:

Hold on, it is true, at 2:30 a.m., I heard walking on my terrace.

Her house was located at 100' of our tent, a little lower. But this person did not go out to see this famous prowler. She fell asleep again. The others remained skeptic. We ran up against walls.

It happened that the reporter, Jean-Paul Guguen, managed to locate this couple of professors, and they were invited to the show, 2 years after the sighting. Without having heard what was on the tape recorded 2 years ago by the student, they spoke about the event again, answering Jean-Paul Guguenís questions. The lady said:

The tent was behind me. I heard footsteps and I believed that my husband had left or moved inside the tent. I turn myself of a quarter of turn to the left, and there, on the same terrace that the tent, I see within approximately 15', something.

In fact, I cannot say something because I had the impression that there was life in this. I saw somebody or something who looked at me, or at least which was turned towards me and did not move.

Imagine a piece of sugar which you paint in black, you put a rather oval head on the top. The whole not shining, mate black. At the place of the eyes, 2 white, very large disks. And that is all. No mouth, no nose, no arms. I could not see whether it had legs because tall wild grasses rose rather high. It measured about 3½' of height.

Did you have the impression that it stared at you?

I do not want to say that it stared at me, because there was no glance. There was simply a head turned towards me, but with a very frozen attitude. I had the impression that something occurred. That nature had stopped living.

How much time did you look at this humanoid?

It hardly lasted 15 seconds. I was afraid. I rushed inside the tent and I made an enormous jump.

Jean-Paul Guguen then listens to the husband:

I was laying in the tent, all of a sudden I saw my wife rush in, with an enormous jump. She said to me:

I have just seen something terrible, dreadful!

I did not understand what she had seen but I understood that she had just seen something out of the ordinary.

Why didnít you get out?

Her face was literally deformed by the fear. I couldnít find the courage to get out. I closed the tent from the inside. We waited while listening.

When I understood that it was a small humanoid Iíve been seeing, I did not want to go out for I had read that movements of fright we may make could be badly interpreted by them.

If I follow you correctly, you were already conditioned by your readings?

No, I did not think of an extraterrestrial being or a flying saucer immediately. I was initially very afraid and I remained under the shock of fright during 10 minutes. Only after that I started to think and I established the link between the round luminous shape seen lower in the cark park.

The following morning, did you feel a curiosity to go check for possible traces?

Yes. We located the places. First, close to the tent there was pressed grass. But it was not significant, because people could very well have printed these traces. Lower, on car park, we sought traces, in vain.

Her husband continues:

When we told our history, the next day, a person which lived within 150' of us remembered that this night, at 2:30 a.m., she had heard footsteps on her terrace. She almost stood up, thinking that it was a prowler. Finally, she had fallen asleep again.

Jean-Paul Guguen asks the lady:

If, tomorrow, you see a humanoid again, would you push the experience further? Would try to establish a contact?

For my part, certainly.

Without any fear?

This time without fear. Letís say all the same that perhaps that if it were in the same circumstances, in the night, I would have the same reactions of fright. But if it were in full day and if I saw it coming out of a saucer and coming towards me in a way much more brutal and sudden, I would push the meeting further, by curiosity.

Do you think that the discovery of these beings brings something to science?

I do not think that it brings something to science, but rather to each one of us. That enables us to have a more opened mind, to widen our horizon and way of life. You need to consider that it is totally possible that there are other life forms than us in the universe.

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