Following my posting on Ghost Bites, friends dropped by my cubicle at the office and asked, "Kat sini ada, kan?"
I told a colleague that sometimes its simply our imagination running wild.
"But Encik XXX heard suara perempuan bagi salam kat office dia," she said. "Dia jawab tak?" I asked. "Dia jawab, kemudian dia lari," she said. We burst out laughing.
That's one of the reasons why I have stopped watching horror movies at home (besides the fact that I now live alone and I don't have anyone to wake me up if I have a nightmare.) You tend to "hear" and "see" things when your mind wanders.
But I did watched Hantu Kak Limah Balik ke Rumah (some people make the mistake of saying "balik kampung" instead) on Astro First. Well, I cheated … I had watched it at the movie theatre with my niece Mysara and nephew Danial earlier and knew what it was all about before watching it alone at home.
This Mamat Khalid's latest is a horror comedy. And what these horror comedies do is to take the fear factor out. In this Mamat Khalid's movie, the non-hantu ie Kak Limah looked scarier that the two hantu, Nin and Ayu. You will also hear children singing "Enjit-Enjit Semut" now. Also "ce citer, ce citer" (short for cuba cerita) has become a household slang. Who doesn't know who Usop "angkat tangan macam saya" Wilcha is.
Another movie I watched on Astro First with Danial and Mysara was "Sini Ada Hantu", about these two characters driving a hearse engaging each other with horror stories. There was some comedy in it, too.
But I can tell you that real life experience is not something that one can laugh about.
We used to live in a government bungalow behind the Istana Negara. For privacy reasons, I'm not going to tell you which house it is. We were later told that we shared the house with "orang bunian". A rojak seller, who makes his rounds there, said we were the only family which had stayed at the house beyond three months. We were then into our sixth month at the house. We still didn't know why he said that then.
But my parents were wary of noises in the night especially sounds of someone walking up and down the front staircase. My brother's rocking horse would go rickety-rackety in the middle of the night. An aunt who came visiting and slept in the upstairs bedroom had complained to another aunt that we had played tricks on her. She said we had turn the lights on and off while she was trying to sleep in the second level bedroom. We did no such thing.
Later, my father met the female "orang bunian" in his sleep, who had asked him to marry her. My father refused to do so. A day after, my mother suffered a stiff neck. A doctor diagnosed it as "angin" but jabs could not cure her. A medium the family sought asked my father to "spit" sireh which he (my father, not the medium) had munched onto my mother's neck at the stroke of midnight with the front door of the house ajar but that too didn't work.
It was about the same time that we were to be transferred to Johor Baru and my father decided to move the family to his sister's Kampung Pandan house first.
They (him, my mother and my uncle and auntie) returned to the Jalan Bukit Petaling house to pack. They would packed one day and return the next day to find that whatever they had stored were taken out of the boxes.
A medium, who stayed next door to my aunt's, was taken to the house. He raved about the beauty of the female "orang bunian" and that there was this "wangi" smell permeating throughout the house. He confirmed her existence and that of a small boy, who he said was her son. He was the one making all the racket at night. He told us they didn't want us to move out of the house.
We moved to Johor Baru eventually and my father's bomoh cousin "cured" my mother of the stiff neck with the recital of some verses from the Quran.
We also found out much later that there was "something" at the Johor Baru house also (at the entrance) but "it" didn't 'disturb' us as the one in Kuala Lumpur.
Six of us had gone to an island off the coast of Terengganu. With the assistance of the Fisheries Department, we managed to stay at one of the two hillside chalets on the island. We stayed two nights there. The first night was uneventful.
It was the second night that some of us got freaked. Earlier in the day, we took the boat out to the other side of the island and swam in the sea. Later in the day, we helped the department officials cleaned up the island and also went to the village in a nearby island. We returned quite late in the evening.
We had dinner at one of the quarters by the beach and it was close to midnight when we left for our chalet. It was raining.
I was feeling feverish and decided to sleep while my colleagues ended up played cards.
I don't how long I had slept but I woke up to find someone laying beside me, with her back towards me. I thought nothing of it, thinking that it could be one of my colleagues.
At about 5.30am, I woke up when the air-conditioning went off. I was in bed alone. Then I heard faintly the sounds of kompang. There were no villages on the island we were on and it could have come from the kampung we visited in the nearby island but why this early in the morning?
At breakfast, the Fisheries Department officials asked us if we had trouble during the night. We looked at each other and that was went all the stories came out.
A colleague heard her name being called out that night. Another heard chains being dragged. I told the officials about the kompang.
They laughed. We were told we were a bunch of brave girls.
"Dua orang lelaki dari XXX (a Malay publication) duduk di chalet yang sama seminggu yang lalu tapi lari turun tengah-tengah malam," one official said.
They related to us some incidents that confirmed my suspicion that there were something else there besides us on the island.
It was later in Kuala Terengganu that I found out I had slept alone on the bed throughout the night while the girl who was supposed to share the same bed decided to sleep with the other colleagues on the floor when she heard the chains being dragged.
The same "being", twice at the same place in Langkawi!
The first time, two friends and I went to this place on the other side of Pantai Cenang. I "sighted" it as a friend was making his way to the beach. It was hanging down the tree. A glimpse but enough to tell me it was the ugliest "being" I had ever seen.
The second time I saw it was on another visit passing the area. We had just left a hotel there and it was Maghrib when we drove passed the area. I saw "it" perched on the signboard along the road. "Tengok monyet tu," I told Fahmi, the friend who was driving. It actually looked like the macaques that roamed freely in the area. Another friend, Helen, in the rear passenger seat, was sleeping.
Fahmi kept really quiet. After we got back to Buray Bay, he told me, "Kak, saya tak nampak apa-apa tadi." That freaked me out!
That night, I couldn't sleep thinking of what I saw earlier in the day.