Tag Archives: ghosts

White Watchers

Nationality: Cantonese/American

Primary Language: Cantonese

Other Language(s): English

Age: 58

Occupation: Engineer

Residence: Yorba Linda

Performance Date: 19th of November 2023

This story was recounted through email to me and takes place in their family’s apartment in Hong Kong between during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Unfortunately due to how young the informant was at the time, they do not remember a lot of details and also did not feel comfortable going into more detail than they provided. After recounting the story, they commented that they are glad they no longer see the apparitions. They still believe that we are not alone and that other beings can cross into our dimensions even though they are not supposed to.

P as a child saw apparitions in their family apartment. They were described as white shaped human figures that would float across the apartment. The figures would float aimlessly and not interact with anyone, they would simply move across the house. P described their movement as if they were flowing through the air. One night when P and their siblings were sleeping, they woke up and P saw the figures in the room watching them. P said that that was the first time they really interacted with anything or anyone in the house. From then on, the figures would make a habit of watching P and their siblings sleeping, just silently watching, staying completely still. In the day when P saw the figures, they would continue to float around like they normally did, but at night sleeping became horrifying. P recalled that they would often times be unable to fall asleep, but be too afraid to open their eyes because they could feel the figures’ presence. All P could do was tightly shut their eyes and hope the figures would leave or that they would fall asleep soon. Shortly after, P and his family would move to the United States where they would no longer see the apparitions.

P is my uncle and is known in the family for having this “3rd eye” or “true vision” and my dad, his brother, used to tell me all the time that P used to see things because of his special sense. Often time when I see P at family functions he stares off into the distance, he’s very well known for doing that. My dad thinks he does this because he’s seeing something. I always thought this was a little funny seeing him zone out, but after hearing his stories and how uncomfortable he was about talking about it, I can’t help but think it’s at least a little bit true. That being said, my family is already pretty open about superstitious belief, it’s not just my dad’s side of the family as my mother believes in ghosts too. I think being raised around the idea that ghosts are real definitely makes this story more believable to me too. Admittedly, this was the first story P recounted and he wasn’t feeling entirely open just yet, so the details of the story were heavily limited.

The Lady in the Green Dress

Nationality: Italian
Primary Language: English
Other language(s): n/a
Age: 52
Occupation: Civil Defense Attorney
Residence: North Salt Lake, UT
Performance Date: 11/25/2023

Tags: Green Dress, Ghosts, Gothic Hotel, Dreams

Text: “Ever since I could remember, my mom had this recurring nightmare of the same figure. In her dream, there was this lady with long hair who was wearing a long, green dress. Everything about her seemed stretched. The dreams were so prominent that the Lady in the Green Dress was a household name. She never extended her reach outside of dreams, however, until her and her second husband’s anniversary. To celebrate, the couple booked a night at some old, decrepit hotel. She can’t remember the name of it, but said it reminded her of the Bate’s Motel from Psycho. On the first night at midnight, my mom said she woke up and felt the air around her go heavy, and when she opened her eyes, the Lady in the Green Dress was hovering no more than six inches above her. The fog immediately cleared from her head as she froze, staring at this floating apparition from her dreams. After a few moments, she registered what she was seeing, bolted out of bed, and screamed.”

Context: KV’s mom was not a spiritual person. She always took a practical, scientific approach to things. Therefore, it’s surprising that she’d share, and more importantly believe, a story like this. As for the informant, KV firmly believes in ghosts, therefore this story was not difficult for her to share, in fact, however, she made it known her mom constantly talked about the lady in the green dress throughout her childhood. She mentioned how this was the one exception her mom made to her belief in the supernatural. 

Analysis: This is a classic ghost story involving many examples of liminal spaces. For example, the initial appearance of the apparition occurred, and recurred, in a dream. Dreams occur in the REM stage of the sleep cycle, a paradoxical stage in which the mind acts as if it were awake, but the body is paralyzed. Additionally, the couple stayed at an old hotel, giving the impression of a classic, gothic haunted house typical of many ghost stories. The apparition appeared to KV’s mom at midnight, the liminal period between two days. While all of these elements are reminiscent of a classic ghost story, I myself am not completely convinced of an actual haunting. I believe the Lady in the Green Dress was in fact a character in a recurring nightmare, however, as the supposed physical appearance occurred during the night, I believe it may have just been a very convincing dream. However, who is to say the Lady in the Green Dress did not appear to KV’s mom that night, for dreams may exist in a space between the living realm and the realm of the dead.

We’d Better Go In

Nationality: American
Primary Language: English
Other language(s): n/a
Age: 78
Occupation: Retired Nurse
Residence: Bountiful, UT
Performance Date: 11/25/2023

Tags: Ghosts, Ancestors, Family, Hospital

“I remember when my dad was in the hospital, dying of bone cancer. He was simultaneously stricken with horrible Alzheimer’s, which meant he could never tell you his pain level to give any indication of the necessary dosage for his medication. Therefore, he was under perpetual surveillance. My sister, her husband, and I paid him a visit at some point in time. My husband was out of town, otherwise, he would have been there too. I remember us three sitting outside on the porch, it was an old-folks hospital so they had porches like that, positioned right in front of the entrance to my dad’s room. We were talking about the ball game we had watched the night prior and some family gossip when all of a sudden, my brother-in-law said in the calmest tone, “B. just walked in, we’d better go inside.” B. is my older brother, well, was my brother as he died a few years back. Naturally, I was shocked when my brother-in-law reported his ghost entering my dad’s hospital room. We did as he suggested and went inside to see my father in an otherwise empty room. The nursing staff arrived shortly after, just as my dad’s eyes went big – he looked startled at something on the ceiling – and just a short three minutes after we walked in, Daddy died.”

Context: This story is from CV talking about her brother-in-law, GP. CV reports GP has always been a spiritual person, frequently recounting his encounters with the dead and ghosts. Before this occurrence, CV believed that when we die, familiar people come and “pick us up.” This story, then, was a confirmation of that, as her brother, B., supposedly came and picked up her father. She claims his eyes bulged and he looked shocked just before his passing, as he could see B. standing there to collect him, but nobody else could.

Analysis: This is a sort of ancestral ghost story, reminiscent of many religious perspectives, particularly Christian, of the afterlife. Dealing with the liminal moments just before a person dies, this tale gives an optimistic take on what happens after we die. That is, we rejoin with our deceased relatives and watch over our living ones. Many elements, such as the naming of the deceased B., walking inside the hospital minutes before CV’s father’s passing, being isolated from the hospital room, and the nursing staff arriving nearly simultaneously make this story difficult to explain via coincidence. However, I am okay with that, as I’d rather accept a positive afterlife over one filled with horror and eeriness.

Dia De Los Muertos “Ofrendas”

Text: “Every year in late October we make a shrine of all of my family member who have passed away, like the one in Coco, and we put out their favorite things. For example we put tulips for my grandma and one of the great grandpa’s ties on the shrine. The idea is that in November 1st they will come visit the shrine and interact with the items and watch over us for the rest of that year in return for us honoring their memory. The shrines are called ofrendas and the kids usually make them but the parents make sure they are structurally sound and beautiful. Making ofrendas is one of my favorite things to do with my siblings and cousin.

Context: GB is originally from Madrid Spain but his mother has strong roots in Mexico, where the tradition was created centuries ago. GB told me stories about making the ofrendas with his siblings and was excited to show me pictures of an example of a shrine from a past holiday. The tradition is very important to GB’s mother because she would make a family ofrenda with her siblings as a child and it seems to be a very long standing tradition from her side of the family.

Analysis: The ofrendas are a central part of the Day of the Dead celebration, which is a time for families and communities to come together to remember and celebrate the lives of those who have passed away. The brightly decorated shrines are meant to welcome the spirits of the dead back to the world of the living, and they are often decorated with offerings such as food, drinks, and personal items that were important to the deceased. The twist of this tradition regards the fact that making these ofrendas means the ghosts of the dead will look over them for the rest of the year, because traditionally the dead can only interact with the living on the days of dia de los muertos. I think this addition is sweet, especially for younger children, for them to be able to feel close to loved ones they may have never gotten to meet. Furthermore, it is a great way for them to get to know what their family members were like based off of what they put on the ofrendas.

The Fort Point Ghost Walk

Text: “I think like 3 years or so ago I went on a tour of Fort Point underneath the golden gate bridge and there was like this scary tour pertaining to the ghosts of soldiers who served in the fort in the past. Part of the tour contained people in ghost costumes but it also included explanations of supernatural events and examples of the tour guides communicating with ghosts in the rooms or sites where they are believed to be.

Context: CH is a resident of Mill Valley in Orange County where he claims to be an hour or so away from the fort where he went on this tour. The scariest part according to him was the setting of the tour, the dark and twisting corridors of the old fort, which added to the overall sense of unease and tension. He also remembered a point where his tour guide tried to talk to the ghost of a soldier who passed away in the room he was in which was very scary. CH said this was a Halloween tradition that people could experience annually around that time of year but that the tour would likely lose its charm after going again.

Analysis: While there have been reports of supernatural activity at the fort over the years, including sightings of ghostly apparitions and unexplained sounds and movements, these claims have not been scientifically verified. It is important to note that many of the stories and legends surrounding Fort Point are based on historical events, such as the fort’s use as a military prison during the Civil War, and the deaths and tragedies that occurred there over the years. These stories have been passed down through the years and have become part of the folklore and mythology surrounding the fort. The people dressing up as these ghosts and telling scary stories of ghosts believed to be inhabiting the fort are ways of perpetuating this belief and are not only a way to attract tourists and visitors, but also a way to keep the rich history of the fort alive and well. The way CH described it the tour he went on seemed to involve some examples of ritual where the guides tried to communicate or interact with apparitions.