(Vanishing Hitchhikers/La Llorona)
One of the Things that Make Me Happy to be a Girl
The aforementioned terms that title this Monster Wednesday [now Thursday, sorry! :/] post are often used to identify a certain stereotype of tortured souls.
A young woman, in a despairing fury over her treatment at the hands of her husband, murders her children. Or she kills them because they prevent her from marrying the man of her dreams. The most known variant of this legend has to be Mexico's La Llorona. In any case, she dies [mostly by killing herself after realizing what she's done] and becomes a spirit doomed to roam the Earth, sobbing and wracked with guilt for all eternity.
[Lets pause and get our facts straight here: The woman murdered her own kids, in cold blood, and we're supposed to let her go around scaring people to death? Someone find out where her remains lay, then salt and burn the b%$^#!]
Not just anyone can hear her cries though, they are like a warning or a foreshadowing for mishap. Her presence is an omen for tragedy, sickness and in extreme cases, even death.
So if you are able to hear her wails, break out the candles and holy-whatevers that you have [supposedly, it is possible to make her keep her distance by brandishing a silver crucifix] and start praying like tomorrow never comes, because maybe... just maybe... it won't.
Now, don't start panicking every time you hear your neighbor's dog bark or howl tonight, it might just be a cat.
Witnesses have often described the spectral appearances as, “the floating shape of a woman”, garbed in a tattered white dress. Sometimes without a clear face or feet, as if she aimlessly wandered the world, but couldn't come into actual contact with it.
My hometown of Vega Baja has its own version of the Woman in White myth. It's an urban legend that's been going around for generations that talks about, “La China”, the spirit of a beautiful young woman with almond shaped eyes that haunted a narrow curve of road 686 of said town. She was said to hitch rides or, more often than not, to simply hop onto the backseat of any car steered by a lone, well-off man. [Gold digger to the end baby!]
She appeared beautiful to them [them = those that stopped to pick her up]. She would ask them to take her home, promising to repay them when they got there, but she'd disappear just as they reached their destination. Some of the men dared to call on the house that she'd pointed out, only to find out that the girl they described had been dead for years.
That would happen if the guy knew how to be a gentleman and behaved respectfully, if the man tried to touch her or made any kind of inappropriate advances toward her, he would vanish, never to be seen or heard of again.
[There in lies the tricky part, because she presents herself in such an alluring way for men. Maybe if she stood there looking like an overweight, middle-aged housewife in a bathrobe, fluffy slippers and rollers they wouldn't stop. But she shows herself as a beautiful maiden and the suckers fall for it every single time.]
They'd be all like, “Ooh!”, and
she'd be there waiting and thinking,
“Hehehe, you're so screwed...”.
Now, the others that chose not to stop and aid her, got off a little easier. She merely gave them a small scare before letting them go on their way.
As soon as they went by her curve, she appeared in their backseat demanding a ride and when they looked at the rearview mirror they saw her true face, a ghastly reflection of death, before she vanished. [Some reported their wallets vanishing as well, but I don't know...]
If you noticed that I'd been using the past tense back there, that's because that road has gone through a lot of transformations in the last few years.
There is no curve anymore, the bit of woods that made it seem hidden were torn down and leveled. The small back-road has been paved over to become an avenue that connects the rural area near the beach to the urban part, bustling with tiny shopping malls and fast food restaurants, near the center of town.
It makes me wonder about what happened to La China, would a reconstruction of such magnitude affect her hauntings in any way? Maybe her spirit is now free to move as it desires and is haunting the unsuspecting male population on the wealthier parts of our island near the hotels and casinos.