Thursday 27 September 2012

X-Files : The Thing In Manchu Costume

X-Files : The Thing In Manchu Costume

My maternal grandmother shared this experience with us. She did not believe in ghosts and the supernatural. She was an atheist. But my maternal grandpa was a very staunch Buddhist and a very god-fearing superstitious man who toed the line and observed all the taboos.

Back in the old days, a few families lived together under the same roof. One day, my grandpa's relative passed away. The Chinese believe that the soul of the newly deceased will come back to visit his home and his loved ones for the last time on the 7th day of his death. On such a day, a feast will be prepared to welcome him and his "guardians" (bull head and horse face) who will be accompanying him back for his home visit. This feast will be laid out on a table in front of the altar table waiting for the return of the soul of the deceased. The entire household is supposed to retire to their rooms early and locked up all their doors. Lights must be switched off. Everyone is to stay as quiet as possible until dawn. Nobody is allowed to come out of their rooms.

My grandmother was her usual sceptical self. She retired to her room as instructed but she refused to switch off the lights. She sat reading by the open window until late into the night, or possibly until the early hours of the following morning, absorbed in her novel. 

Then, all of a sudden, she heard footsteps outside her window. Not feeling afraid at all, she just looked out of her window and she saw the back view of a man. Well, nothing scary at all, right ?. But then, she noticed that the man was wearing a Manchu costume and the man sported a queue down his back !

She wasn't living in the Manchu era. So who the hell walked around in the middle of the night wearing a Manchu costume ?

I leave it to your imagination.

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