Transient Visitors: Strange Humanoid Encounters
By Scott Corrales, © 2014
At some point in the 1990s I had a conversation with Dr. Rafael A. Lara Palmeros, director of research for Mexico’s C.E.F.P organization regarding the motives of individuals who develop an unhealthy attraction to UFO and paranormal phenomena. Dr. Lara mentioned a case involving a certain gentleman from Central Mexico who openly expressed his wish to be “contacted by aliens”, as that would be the solution to all his problems, real or imagined. He went as far as to offer money – not small amounts, ether – to any researcher, contactee or psychic who could make his wish come true.
This wish was not granted, as far as I know. Indeed, the gentleman should have been admonished about being careful about what he hoped for – the time honored admonition. In fact, some people would gladly trade away their negative experiences for free.
Some cases involving humanoid encounters appear to go unnoticed in the vast rush to publish stories in magazines or make them known to TV production companies. One of these unsullied gems was researched by Ramón Nava-Osorio of Spain’s IIEE organization (readers of INEXPLICATA will often see mention being made of the IIEE’s branch in Chile) while looked into the experiences of Juan Soler, a Spanish experiencer of the kind referred to in the 1970s as a “repeater”, a person who has multiple brushes with the unknown over a lifetime.
The “Michelin Men” of Lérida
In the spring of 1977, Soler had gone to a farm which his brother-in-law had just purchased at Binéfar, in the Spanish Province of Huesca, hoping to lend him a hand with plumbing and sundry duties. Once the chores were complete, both men boarded their respective cars and drove away. Soler, however, had trouble with his ignition and made a wrong turn down a country road that lead him to an open field. The road came to an abrupt end, marked by a large toolshed surrounded by farm implements, and it was at that inopportune moment that the engine died.
Things were about to get markedly worse.
According to Soler, who was struggling with the ignition, he noticed a strange figure appear out of nowhere – an entity with a shocking physical appearance. This is how he described it to Ramón Nava –Osorio: “It had no neck and its big round head was directly joined to the body. Its head was enormous and ended in a green-colored crest that resembled a fin. This fin seemed to have something like a corkscrew halfway down. The body was covered in large scales, some 3 centimeters in diameter, green and darker than the rest of the skin. Stunned as I was, I then saw a second and third figure appear, all of them having similar characteristics. The third figure walked to the middle, and all three turned to look at me. They all came from the same place and walked like regular people. I was able to see their eyes, which looked like a horse’s eyes - round, bulging, black and white – and they showed anger. There was considerable distance between the eyes, they had no noses and small mouths, carrying something in their hands that I couldn’t see clearly.”
“I felt invaded by a sense of terror,” continued Soler, “it was a hellish nightmare. As I kept looking at them, I continued to turn the key over in the ignition until the engine started. I put the car in reverse without looking and got out of there the best I could. I normally tend to revisit places where I’ve had experiences, but I’ve never gone back there.”
The last few words of Soler’s testimony are important. Since his earliest experience with non-human entities, he has felt compelled to learn more about the phenomenon with an intensity that researcher Nava-Osorio compares to that of the Roy Neary chacaracter in Spielberg’s “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”. These experiences went back to his early childhood, but none was as vivid as his encounter in September 1966 on the banks of the Marganell River.
At that time, Juan Soler had taken his then-girlfriend on a picnic to a highly wooded area frequented by families from the Manresa area. Around 1400 hours, Soler went off to a spring to bring back water, but something caught his eye: a metallic structure he took at first for a motorcycle’s sidecar, but as he approached, he realized that the object was a long white cylinder standing some 60 centimeters over the ground, “looking like a small submarine” – relatively speaking, as the witness placed its length at some five meters and its width at 120 cm, featuring portholes through which brown seats could be seen.
Nava-Osorio notes that Soler was at least ten meters distant from the object at this point. It was then that he saw two humanoid figures who must have descended from the sub-shaped structure shortly before the experiencer’s arrival.
Soler described the occupants as follows: “They were two beings, dressed in white, wearing helmets similar to those worn by motorcyclists. They were dressed in segmented outfits whose rings made them look like the Michelin Man (a reference to Bibendum, the logo of the Michelin tire company, whose image has been used as a descriptor in many CE-3 cases), although their segments were much thinner than those of the advertising character. The vehicle and the occupants’ clothing was the same color. I couldn’t make out their faces clearly due to the fear I felt and the swiftness with which it all occurred. But they seemed Nordic, although I had the impression they’d gotten suntanned, given the look of their skin. Their suits ended where the helmet started – it had no support or collar. They walked ponderously, wearing short-leg boots and gloves. They looked at me in surprise.”
This is where the “Marganell CE-3” - as we might well call it - took a detour into high strangeness.
Gripped by fear, Juan Soler felt the urge to flee, which is understandable in such a situation, but rather than escaping back to the picnic and his waiting girlfriend, he ran *toward* the humanoids, charging between both figures, brushing against one of them. Even more startling was the fact that the owner of the property containing the spring – described as an older man dressed in blue and wearing a cap – was standing there as if witnessing the proceedings. “He shouted an order, and the two humanoids hurriedly boarded their craft. Once aboard, the managed to touch me at the with the sharp end of the vehicle. I also felt something in my head. I turned around a little and told them: Go ahead, go ahead, I’m not about to do anything to you. When the vehicle had reached the height of my own head, I was gripped by excruciating pain. I felt as though my hair was on fire and the pain spread down my arms to my legs. Fully turning around to look, I saw the portholes [on the vehicle] were closed. They both looked at me from their seats and took off uphill […] The pain was similar to an electric shock, like something I’d experienced in the factory I worked for.”
Nava-Osorio did not press the witness for a better explanation of the events. The description as to the vehicle “going uphill” is unsatisfactory, and no mention is made of Soler returning to his girlfriend’s side.
“I showed up late for work on Monday morning,” Soler added. “Rather than reporting at 0500 I showed up at 0900. In the afternoon I went to see the doctor, but he didn’t put me on leave. He did on the following day, and I was on leave for fifteen days. I told the story to a number of people: friends, contemporaries and people at the factory, all of them serious, well-informed people, but no one believed me.”
There was an added detail to the story. Soler’s description of the entities as resembling Bibendum the Michelin Man was ironic in view of the fact that he worked at the Pirelli tire factory for many years, and his buddies began calling him “Gagarin” after the history-making Soviet astronaut.
Soler made efforts over the years to speak to the landowner who had fearlessly barked at the non-humans, prompting their departure. On one occasion, he went to the man’s home to discuss the bizarre experience, only to be slapped by the old man’s fiery tempered daughter. “The man died in later years, and I never had the pleasure of talking to him. In 1994, the daughter’s husband agreed to speak to me, but he had nothing new to say. His father-in-law died nearly at age 90 at the farmhouse.” An effort to discuss the subject with the parish priest also earned Soler a slap in the face.
“A long time after the incident,” Soler reminisced, “and while I was in the town of Peralta de la Sal, I got to speak to José Rami, the community’s jack-of-all-trades. He described an incident very similar to my own. He was a kilometer outside the town of Peralta with some mules and their tackle when he saw a white vehicle with two pilots. He was so frightened that he covered his eyes for a while, allowing the mules to lead him into town.”
The fact that Juan Soler would later drift into contactee circles would only cause serious researchers and journalists to overlook his experiences. Scientists are tired of telling us that the odds of finding human-looking intelligent beings somewhere in the universe is impossible, citing a number of evolutionary and genetic factors. But one researcher, Edward Ashpole, allows a loophole that will be of interest to those interested in humanoid CE-3s and which many will find vindicating. “This line of thinking,” writes Ashpole in his book The UFO Phenomena: A Scientific Look at the Evidence for Extraterrestrial Contacts
(London: Headline Books, 1995), leads us to the conclusion that creatures with some kind of primate form, though not like us, might emerge from flying saucers, should flying saucers have a physical reality with biological beings inside them.” He then adds the important cautionary sentence: “But no ET could be like the beautiful people reported by many contactees and abductees, unless they were specially bred from human stock.”
Sidestepping any pro-ETH pathway for a moment, could the answer to the humanoid riddle lie in manipulation of the human race not by “ancient astronauts” but by advanced “next door neighbors” from another dimension, who have meddled with humanity since the earliest days of recorded history, and certainly before that? After all, the Sons of God looked upon the daughters of Men, and found them fair…
Humanoids from a Parallel Universe?
Science fiction enthusiasts, or perhaps more specifically, devotees of the oeuvre of Gerry and Silvia Anderson (UFO, Space:1999
and the supermarionation classics Captain Scarlet, Joe 90
and others) surely recall their motion picture Journey to the Far Side of the Sun
, whose plot involves the discovery of a planet similar to Earth occupying the same orbit, always concealed by the fiery bulk of the sun. A mission is launched from our planet and promptly crashes on the alien world, where the protagonist, American astronaut Glenn Ross, portrayed by Ray Thinnes (The Invaders
), finds himself on a world that mirrors our own in every way. In a way, the movie explores the ages-old legend of “the land on the other side of the looking glass” for a contemporary audience.
It’s very likely that Miguel Herrero, a resident of Alcalá de Henares on the outskirts of Madrid, had never seen Journey to the Far Side of the Sun
when fate catapulted him into the pages of UFO history in the early hours of 18 December 1977. An avid fisherman, Herrero had borrowed the company truck to visit a favorite fishing spot, the Buendía Reservoir. Well on his way around six o’clock in the morning, the fisherman’s borrowed vehicle suddenly died on the road (National Hwy 320), and despite Herrera’s best efforts, he found himself unable to restart it. He pushed the truck to the curb and waited for daylight and the possibility of assistance.
He suddenly heard a voice calling out in the morning gloom, and suspecting it might be another stricken motorist, proceeded to go off into the distance to render assistance. He found that the source of the voice was a man wearing a white outfit, asking him to follow him. Thinking it might be a mechanic, Herrera fell in behind the figure.
To his astonishment, he found himself being led to a “hat-shaped object” that projected a metal cylinder to the ground, and a door opened. Herrera would alter tell Madrid’s “El Diario” newspaper: “I found it foolish to think about running at the time. If they wanted to hurt me, they would have done so already.”
The cylinder – described as “metallic and icy cold” – contained an elevator that led them to a large control room. Herrero suffered a brief blackout after his first view of the craft’s interior, subsequently being able to write detailed notes as to what he remembered seeing. The crew, from his notes, were all dressed in white overalls, except for one who bore a red circle on the upper left side. The character introduced himself as “Major Martins”, advising Herrero that the vehicle was able to materialize and dematerialize upon command. Unusually talkative, the humanoid described the crafts operation and other intricacies. Herrero was told that the non-humans “had come to our world by chance. They had calculated a given speed at which to travel, found a void, and reached our dimension two thousand years ago.”
But this Jules Verne-like presentation of technological wonders to an unsuspecting Earthling soon took an ominous turn. Herrero was at first shocked, then frightened, when he saw a man looking exactly like him seated at one of the stations. “My first reaction was to approach him, not to strike him, but to see someone who looked just like me up close.” He was prevented from doing so, advised that he could not come into contact with his doppelgänger, or “his negative”, as Herrero put it. “He was exactly like me, except that the scar which I bear on my left cheek was on his left.” He adds that his double was asked to leave the room, and was not seen again.
It should be noted that a more detailed version of the above appeared in The Journal of Scientific Exploration
(Vol 8, No.1, 1994) in a report by Vicente Juan Ballester Olmos. This version includes photographs of the hypnotic regression session performed on Miguel Herrero Sierra and other cases (dismissed as hoaxes by the author) in which the subject of doppelgängers also plays a part. One such event is the 1985 Vallgorguina Incident, in which Xavier C., a young man, develops a roll of film taken after a visit to a megalithic site. The developed images show claws and “monstrous green faces”. Under hypnosis, Xavier C. claims that strange creatures manufactured “a double” of him which he would later see getting onto a bus in Barcelona.
Rodrigo Andujar of the Zona Ovni podcast reported a humanoid case of the 1950s involving "little men from a strange artifact" seen in the province of Cuenca (1 July 1953 Villar del Sainz). Maximo Munoz, the protagonist, was described as an illiterate shepherd who heard a sharp whistling sound - common on these cases - that prompted him to turn around. To his amazement, he found a tank-shaped object on four legs projecting a powerful light. Intrigued, Muñoz approached the device, and a "door" opened in its upper section. Two diminutive figures, referred to as "tietes"
(little guys) by the witness, emerged from the structure. The "little guys" were described as 60 centimeters tall, with dark features and slanted eyes. They surrounded the young shepherd, who at no point felt any fear, by his own admission, only as sense of curiosity. He described the creatures' language as "very odd". Apparently losing interest in the human, both entities looked at the landscape before boarding their "tank", which "took of quickly" according to the witness.
Despite his protestations of fearlessness, young Maximo returned home in tears and deeply shaken, according to his parents. The father would eventually return to the scene of the alleged humanoid encounter in the company of the Guardia Civil (state police) captain, being able to ascertain the presence of "many footprints as if from children" on the ground, as well as four square impressions supposedly made by the unknown artifact.
The thoughts of the late John A. Keel on the matter bear repeating in this case: “One basic fact should be obvious from the foregoing – these entities and things are not necessarily from some other planet. They are actually closely tied to the human race, are a part of our immediate environment in some unfathomable fashion, and to a very large extent are primarily concerned with misleading us, misinforming us, and playing games with us.”