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Monday, February 20, 2012

Bhutanese Ghosts

My First Night Alone:  Did You Say Ghost?

Chamkhar Shops!
Goodbye BCF Friends
After I saw my house and dropt off all my things, I went with the remaining BCF teachers to Dekiling Chamkhar to drop off Martin and Tera at their location, which is only about 35 minutes from Chumey (my location).  The inside of their house is way cuter than mine and I was jealous because they have a geeza (hot water/shower) and a western toilet.  Chamkhar is great because it has a tiny cheese factory, pizza, French fries, disco and tons of little shops.  I guess you know where I will be spending most of my free time.  I stayed the night with the teachers in a Chamkhar hotel and enjoyed my last hot shower for the year.  The next morning, I said my goodbyes and watched the bus drive off with the only friends I had made in Bhutan.  I stood there all alone for the first time, wondering what next?  Little did I know I was about to get a new family, one that I would quickly come to adore.

My principal and his wife
Soon my principal and his family picked me up to take me back home.  They were so kind to me and I instantly recognized them as my new parent’s and kid sis.  Before we ventured home, they took me out to lunch and to several monasteries.  I even got a little taste of my first holy water and it was a great introduction to Bhutanese culture.  I found that my new family has a great sense of humor and our conversations flow with ease.  I love talking to them and we share tons of laughs.  I frequently find myself thanking the heavens above for bringing me such kind people.  It seems like my prayers don’t stop in Bhutan.

Dechin  helping me unpack.
Once we got back to my house, they called some friends and everyone scurried around like ants helping me unpack.  I felt exhausted from the road trip and really needed the extra help.  My principal’s daughter helped me set up my entire room and I couldn’t have done it without her.  Every time I would set something down, she would be right behind me to reorganize it in a neater way.  I was so grateful for her company while she answered all my silly questions, like which blanket goes on top and can a bear break down my door?  Although she’s only 15, I felt like she was the older sister.

My principal insisted that I stay the night at their house for the first day since my neighbors weren’t home from vacation and to ensure I wouldn’t be lonely.  They fed me an amazing dinner of rice, eggs, and green bean curry loaded with tomatoes, onions, and cilantro.  I slept like a baby in their beautiful, warm alter room.  They did a great job distracting me from feeling homesick and they eased me into my transition.  The next day, my neighbor who lives above me came home and I decided that I should try out my new bed.  However, I have to be honest, I was a little scared to sleep alone because I was worried about whether or not my house was haunted. 

Here’s why, a few days before we left the capital, one of the teachers had a book that said my region (Bumthang) was known for the most ghost sightings and spiritual activity.  If you’re a close friend of mine, you know that’s the last thing I wanted to hear.  I have experienced way too much paranormal activity in my lifetime and ghosts freak me out more than these stray dogs.  There’s something about my aura that ghosts seem to like and sometimes they try to give me messages, which always scares the crap out of me and I’m not open to it.  Most people don’t worry if their new home has a spirit roaming around, but I do based on my past experiences.  I was angry that I found this out right before I was to about to live alone for a year and I wanted to throw the book out of the window.  However, it was too late and off I was to ghost central Bhutan.

So there I was in the heartland of Bhutan ready to be brave and face some Bhutanese ghosts.  I knew that I shouldn't get comfortable in my principals alter room because I might never want to leave.  I reminded myself of the power of prayer and that I could pray for protection or try to pray them away, if I felt like there were any ghosts trying to hang out with me.  I wasn’t surprised that I attracted myself to the most spiritual place in Bhutan, but how do I always get the ghosts?  Seriously, does anybody know why?

My home is the bottom left unit.
It was the first night that I was to stay alone in months.  In fact, I have never lived alone in my entire life.  That first night, my home didn’t feel like my nest yet; it felt empty, dark, eerie, and cold.  I looked out the window and it was pitch black.  No lights anywhere and the only sound I could hear was the rushing river.  I was scared!  This was very different from the bright downtown lights of San Diego that filled my high-rise bedroom like a supersized nightlight. 

My Collection of Flashlights!

Therefore, I slept with the lights on, my grandma’s rosemary, three flashlights by my side in case the ghosts turned off the lights (they like to do that) and a beanie stretched over my eyes so that I wouldn’t see any ghosts.  Then I pulled my blankets up to my nose, but left it out so I could breath.  I realized that I looked so silly and if I were a ghost, I would want to honk my nose for fun since it was the only thing sticking out.  So next I made a cave out of the blankets, burrowed myself in and finally felt safe enough to fall asleep.  The second night, I felt like there were no ghosts sharing my space and I convinced myself to sleep with the lights off.  It’s been about a week now and I haven’t felt the presence of anything, but then again a spirit always seems to find me.  Whenever I hear a creepy noise, I convince myself it’s a cute mouse upstairs.  Wish me luck! 


  1. Hey Sabrina I love your humor and the way you describe everythink.You are so spirtual thats why you feel ghost presence they like you.You must be a comfort to them they feel your good heart.Keep us informed.Love you!

  2. Thank Tia, I hadn't thought about it that way before. Awe the ghosts like