Ghost Story – Ojai, California

Ghost Stories- The Bridge Girl in Ojai, California

A while back, there was this girl in Ojai.  I forgot her name, but uh, she was a very young girl with a big future.  One night, she was walking alone along the road back home.  Everything was fine until she started going over this bridge.  So, as she starts walking across this bridge, a car came zooming out of nowhere and hit her dead on.  The car was speeding and she was pronounced dead shortly after the police arrived on the scene.  As the story goes, her ghost lives on and never hurts people unless they come speeding across that very bridge.  So, uh, rumor has it that if you speed along this bridge anytime of the day, especially the night, her ghost will get in your car and kill you.

My roommate Daniel told this story to me shortly after his return from Ojai, California.  Supposedly, Ojai is filled with ghost stories and this one is not only interesting, but has a lesson behind it as well.  He said this story was told to him a couple minutes before he crossed the bridge.  He also explained that the person that performed it told him in a very serious manner and seemed to believe the story.  “The way Kaes told me the story, I almost believed it right away myself.  It was kind of scary and interesting at the same time.  I was not sure whether to believe it or just slow down.  Either way, I did not want to get killed!” When I asked him what he thought of the actual story and its relevance, he said that he thought it was probably true, but he wanted to look it up in newspaper archives to make sure.

Daniel did not really give a detailed analysis of the story, but his reaction to it gave way to my theory of why the story is told.  I searched online and could not find anything about a girl dying in Ojai on any bridge.  This leads me to believe that this story was made and told to do three things.  First, I believe it was told to make sure drivers are safe crossing the bridge.  Many stories are told to teach a lesson and to make sure safety is always on everyone’s mind.  If people have to scare you to make a point, they are definitely willing to do that.  The second reason is pure entertainment.  I cannot imagine that driving through Ojai is much fun, especially when you are driving slow and cautious.  This ghost story could be used to pass time and invoke the imagination.  Lastly, this story, like many others, is told to create a sense of belonging and identity within the Ojai community.  Anybody that knows this story has either been to Ojai or lived there.

One other interesting fact to point out is the time period of the story.  It is easily relatable with events that happen today.  Most people in America of driving age drive a car and many even speed.  This story, minus the ghost emerging and killing you, can be identified with most people easily.  Frequently, you hear of car accidents caused by speeding so this is definitely not out of realm of possibility.