Story – Philippines

Ghost Story

“Biata is the ancestral home of my mom’s grandparents.  The family still lives there but no one in the village ever wants to come near it.  Everyone would say that there was a ghost lady appearing there, that it was haunted by the old owner of the house… she was an old, rich lady at the turn of the century in the late 1700s.  She died there and everyone still thinks she haunts it.  Even my family—no one will sleep alone in a room when they are there, even my cousins have stories where they swear they have seen her.  Tita Ada has to pay TONS of money, even now, anytime she wants a carpenter to come and fix something because no body wants to go over there.”

The informant began this story with the disclaimer, “Filipinos are really into ghost stories, people are always seeing faces or a reflection or something… every now and then Biata would show up, then my dead grandmother was seen walking around.  I never saw them, but as a child was still wary of the prospect.”

As far as the general Filipino trend and preoccupation with ghost sightings… I am not sure.  But in this particular case I think there are legitimate reasons for imagined haunting by this particular ghost.  Abukay is not a terribly big village, and Biata is one of its oldest and largest homes.  I do know that that side of the informant’s family has quite the lineage of old, unfriendly women.  Throughout many generations now there have been more daughters than sons, and especially with  the absence of these sons due to various Wars and conflicts.  For at least the last century, this house has been filled with women, who become old maids, and have very long-living genes so they whither in that house until they two are dead.  Even now, the current generation is three old sisters who occupy Biata.  I would imagine, that after a first sighting of a ghost long ago, this story was simply perpetuated by image of the living occupants.  Who would doubt that the ghost of an old lady is there, when the majority of people who live there are a bunch of old crones.