The paranormal activity in Indonesia is unlike anything that I’ve ever experienced. There’s no escaping the presence of religion, ghosts, and psychics and my black-and-white, science driven logic is really struggling to get a good grasp on what exactly is going on here. I’m not going to touch religion, but here’s what I’ve worked out so far with the ghosts and the psychics.
Ghosts are not spirits of dead people, but separate beings. Certain ghosts are recognizable, but you really don’t want to see any. People who can see them can see them everywhere (I cannot) and apparently, our old house was riddled with them. Ghosts especially like to spend time in the trees. One student told me that after seeing a ghost in his grandmother’s tree, she immediately cut it down. Another student expressed that they struggle with the tree issue because ghosts live in the trees and that’s bad for people, but if you cut down the trees, it’s bad for the environment.
This picture is mostly up to show off last night’s sunset, but do you see anything hanging out in our trees?
The police system here is pretty inefficient. Thank you, corruption. That being said, when you need to get to the bottom of something, you take it to your trusted paranormal specialist. This became especially relevant to me a couple of weeks ago when $200.00 USD went missing. Two different psychics said that that it was a female who is close to me. Amy is not a suspect. But who knows. Maybe he had a clear vision. Maybe it was made up. But either way, I’m out $200.00 and there’s nothing that can really be done about it.
The ghosts and the psychics really remind me that I’m operating in culture extremely different from the United States. It’s easy to forget that sometimes. You see a lot of traditional Indonesian clothing, but you see a lot of jeans and t-shirts too. I work in an English school, so I often hear these accounts from English speakers. I definitely have never heard someone speak so definitely about paranormal activity in English before I came here. Other moments that remind me how far away I am from home, geographically and culturally, are riding past the traditional markets being set up in the wee hours of the morning when I’m driving home from a night club and the frequent call to prayers. I also can’t forget the fact that I’m an outsider since people constantly remind me by shouting “bule!” (foreigner) as I pass. Yes, the bule shouts are getting old. Now that I’m over my culture shock hump, am settled into a routine, and can get around really well with my bahasa, the little intricacies of Indonesian culture are starting to show themselves. Who knows, maybe I’ll even see a ghost.