The Ghosts and Spirits in My
When I was around six years old, I was living in
my country, Guatemala, with my family. We lived in a house that had belonged to
my grandmother and was very old. It was a mill house with a lot of rooms, a big
patio, and a beautiful garden. But there was something weird about that house.
Sometimes at night after everybody went to bed,
we would hear weird noises coming from the kitchen where my grandfather died.
Some other nights it sounded like somebody was walking on the terrace. One time,
somebody knocked on the door of our room where my mom, my brother and I used to
sleep. However, when my mom opened the window there was nobody outside.
I was scared of going down to the last room near
the laundry because that was the scariest area, even though I had never experienced
anything like my brother had. After my grandfather died my brother Manuel was
around 12 years old. He was very depressed after the death of my grandfather because
he was really close to him. One night, my brother didn’t want to eat anything
so he went outside and sat on the patio while everybody was in the dining room.
Suddenly he came running into the dining room. He looked really scared. His face
was pale with a sick look on it and he couldn’t talk. When my mom saw him,
she jumped off her chair and asked him, “What happened? What did you see?”
“I don’t know,” he said, “I
saw this old man coming down the stairs wearing my grandfather’s boots.”
Everybody was scared. We knew he wasn’t lying by the look on his face.
But no more than a week later something strange
happened to me. It was a cold afternoon. The sun was going down and the sky looked
red from my terrace. That whole day I had been playing around by myself. I remember
I was wearing my favorite dress, the one that had pockets on each side. It was
dark green and white-dotted. I also had my doll with me - an old blond doll that
had lost one arm.
From the patio, you could smell my grandmother cooking
fried plantains for dinner. It was that old, delicious smell that I had smelled
for years. My brother was buying the bread for dinner at the old lady’s
bakery. That bread really tasted good. That’s why my grandmother always
sent my brother to buy the dinner bread from her.
Finally my brother came back with a basket full
of delicious bread. I was so hungry that I was waiting at the table. I thought
that grandmother was ready to serve us the food, but she said that there were
no clean dishes, so she told me to come with her to wash some of them. I followed
my grandmother down to the laundry room where we washed the dishes.
As I had mentioned, I was scared to death of going
down there. But at that time, I was with my grandmother, so I wasn’t really
afraid of going there.
My mom and my brother stayed in the kitchen taking care of the food, because,
if nobody was in the kitchen, the cats that hung around the roof would always
come down, go into the kitchen, and eat our food.
When we got to the laundry room, my grandma placed
the dishes on the table that was near the sink and started to mix some soap with
water so she had enough for all the dishes. While she was doing that, I sat on
the floor of the hallway that took you to the last room. Nobody wanted to move
there, even though it was big, because that is where more noises were. Also there
was an earthquake that touched Guatemala and one of walls in that room had a crack
across it so it was really unsafe to live in that room.
While I was waiting for my grandmother I was having
fun playing with my doll in a pot of flowers that was next to me. I remember the
only light there came from an old lamp that swung back and forth from the tall
ceiling. Every time the wind blew the lamp moved making your shadow move too.
I was having so much fun, that I didn’t really hear when my grandma told
me to stop playing with the dirt. Suddenly, I looked toward the room down the
hall and saw something like goat’s feet with big claws.
At that moment I felt my feet getting heavy. My
heart was beating so fast that I couldn’t get up and run. So my reaction
was to keep looking up to see what was in front of me. I saw a giant goat. Some
parts of his body looked like a man’s body. His skin was dark, but not hairy.
His legs looked like a cat’s legs when it is standing up. His face was weird,
like a goat’s face, with big dark eyes and big cheekbones. He had two arms
going back from the sides of his head. They were brown and pointy. He looked really
built and strong. The strangest thing of all was that there was a blue cage that
wasn’t made out of any hard material surrounding him. It was like made out
of light. He looked mean with a terrible look on his face.
After a minute, I finally reacted and started running
to the kitchen. I didn’t look back at any time. I didn’t see him or
hear him do anything else other than just stand there.
When I got the stairs, I ran to the kitchen and hugged
my grandmother. I was screaming until she splashed some water on my face. I told
her what I had seen and she said, “See what happens when you don’t
listen to your elders!”
© Copyright Silver International Newspaper, Montgomery Blair H.S. 2003
(This page was created by Maria Torres)