Skinwalkers

--Informant Info--
Nationality: American
Age: 21
Occupation: Disneyland Cast Member
Residence: Fullerton, CA
Date of Performance/Collection: 4/29/2020
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s):

Text:

Informant:

My mom’s family came from Mexico and they moved up into California through the desert. They have these stories that have been passed down about skinwalkers. They’re kind of like witches that can take the shape of something else, but there’s something physically wrong with them. If they took the shape of your mom, the eyes would be too big or the teeth would be too sharp or the fingers way too long. There’d be something really weird that would let you know something’s wrong. That side of my family has always said one of the skinwalkers married an ancestor so we’ve partially got skinwalker blood in our veins. 

I was taught at a very early age to always keep every single seat in the car covered with something when you’re driving through the desert. If it is empty, that’s how they get in the car. I don’t know what they do though. (a beat) Marry your ancestor I guess. I don’t know what the threat is, but I still always keep every seat in my car filled so I never have to find out. 

Context: I asked a group of friends to share anything they knew about cryptids. This was one of their replies. The informant is of hispanic descent.

Thoughts: I am slightly familiar with the concept of skinwalkers as a Navajo legend, but not as a hispanic one.

For more on skinwalkers see: https://www.legendsofamerica.com/navajo-skinwalkers/