February 16, 2012

Location #3: Isla de las Munecas

Those of you with a phobia for dolls are not going to like this next location I have chosen. Consider yourself warned.

No, this isn't a creative shot of that one stray doll someone always finds in a creepy location.

The entire forsaken island is covered in broken, rotted, decapitated old dolls. Hence it's name, 'Island of the Dolls'

Isla de las Munecas started out with good intentions, as many creepy places do. The island’s only occupant, Don Julian Santana, found the body of a drowned girl in the canals of Xochimico near Mexico City some 50 years ago. He was heartbroken and disturbed by her death, so when he founda doll floating by in the canal soon after, thinking it was hers, he placed it in a tree to please the girl's spirit, and to hopefully shield the island from being haunted by her or any other vengeful souls.

As what usually happens to those who live alone, Santana soon developed an obsession. Convinced one doll in a tree was not enough, he continued to snatch up any dolls, or doll parts, that floated past in the canal, and hang them somewhere on the island. It soon became less about the girl, and more about easing his own tortured soul, and he began wandering from home to tear through trash for more parts, and even started trading his home grown crops for dolls.

Man, it's..... it's good I'm not freaked out by dolls, or.... or this would get hard to write...

*clears throat* Anyway... The tale becomes even more depressing in 2001 when Don Julian drowned in the same canal as the little girl did. People said that the dolls, possessed by tortured spirits, murdered the old man out of fury for him gathering such a collection. A far more likely story is that Santana’s death was an accident... even though he'd lived there for so many years and was a talented swimmer...

Getting to the island is laborious and exhausting, but witnessing all the dolls and the disturbing manner they now all hang is an incredible sight. The majority of the dolls were given up by their previous owners due to being worn out and broken, which made Santana pity the poor toys all the more. Now, they hang from trees, fences, buildings and wires, serving as homes for insects and spiders, and creeping the ever loving hell out of visitors, who often choose to leave their own dolls, thereby carrying on Santana's work, long after his death, and perhaps easing his own tortured soul in the process.

Alright, I get it, lots of messed up creepy dolls. I'm out.

The Dullahan

The next beastie on this list comes from the Emerald Isles, lovely Ireland!

With many similarities to the Headless Horseman, the Irish Dullahan is a kind of unseelie fairy. This is no Tinkerbell, though. The Dullahan is a figure of death, a headless creature riding a huge black horse, which is sometimes also headless, with the dullahan's own head carried protectively under its arm.

The eyes are massive and bloodshot, moving constantly in an attempt to locate the unfortunate soul it's been sent to collect. The flesh is a feted green, and sags loosely from the skull.

Sometimes the dullahan drives a funeral coach, decked with candles supported by skulls, wheel spokes made from thigh bones and a wagon covering made from a stretched dried skin.

When this fairy stops riding, it is apparently where a person is supposed to die. Once stopped, the dullahan's cracked lips will part and call out the victim's name, causing said person to drop dead.

It's impossible to lock out a dullahan. Locks and gates of all manner and design open without being touched as they approach. And if you are unfortunate to come across one at night, and you are not its intended victim, keep your eyes firmly averted and do not speak to it. The Dullahan despises being watched while working, and if witnessed, they will dump a tub of blood onto you, marking you as the next to die. Or, if you are fortunate, they'll merely blind you with the whip they carry, fashioned from a human spine.

The only known way to drive away a dullahan is with a bit of gold, be it a coin or a pin. This is not proven to work for those meant to die, however, so... just stay in at night when visiting Ireland.

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

Woman in White

Women in White are seen all over the world, and often go by other names, White Lady, White Widows, and even La Llorona, Mexico's Weeping Woman. There are as many variations on how the lady died and what she wants as there are names for her.

A rare variation of the Woman in White is a beautiful woman who, due to insanity over being betrayed by a husband or lover, kills her children, most often through drowning. When she realizes what it is she has done, she kills herself out of grief and madness. Now, she prowls the world, seeking her lost children and punishing unfaithful men.

The more popular versions of White Ladies tells of brides killed on or shortly before their wedding days, but these ghosts are usually benevolent, the bride often simply seeking her groom, or wishing for a ride to her wedding.

Mexico's La Llorona tells of a woman killing her children by drowning them, in order to be with the man that she loved. He of course rejects her, and she kills herself. Challenged at the gates of heaven as to the whereabouts of her children, she is refused entry until she finds them. The woman is forced to wander the Earth for all eternity, searching in vain for her drowned offspring, with her constant weeping giving her the name "La Llorona".

All in all, Women in White are more saddening and heartbreaking than creepy, but still deserve a place here, I feel.

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

Location #2: Pripyat

Oooh, yes, Pripyat, you definitely have a place on my Creepy Places list.

 Pripyat was founded in 1970 to house workers for the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, but was abandoned in 1986 following the Chernobyl disaster. Said disaster being when there was a small malfunction in the Chernobyl reactor, so for safety reasons the city was evacuated. The 'small malfunction' led to an explosion at Reactor 4.

People flooded to this bridge to watch the reactor, seeing a blast of colorful flames shoot up past the very top of the smoke stack. Every person who stood on that bridge died shortly after, having received over 500 roentgens of radiations, which is fatal.

The rest of the town was flooded with powerful waves of radiation, so strong that the entire population of 50, 000 was evacuated, requiring people from the Soviet Union to be FORCED to come and help evacuate people and calm the danger in the plant. Most of said people also died from the radiation.

The funfair built in Pripyat was to be opened on May 1st. The Chernobyl disaster occurred on April 26th, leaving the fair completely abandoned. The ferris wheel remains one of the most irradiated parts of Pripyat since the disaster, making it still dangerous today.

The hospital that took in many of Reactor 4′s first victims for treatment was already exposed to huge amounts of radiation, rendering any attempts to save people useless.

The looming ferris wheel of Pripyat, as well as many broken buildings, inspired a creepy level in Call of Duty. Honestly, it just inspires me to find a fairground that's not creepy as all hell.

Location #1: The Abandoned Takakanonuma Greenland Park, Japan

Note: Locations are numbered merely to stand out from the creatures & ghosts. They are not rated in any particular order

Of course, my first creepy location is located in Japan!

Takakanonuma Greenland Park in Japan first opened in Hobara in 1973 but closed without warning just a few years later. The official claim for the shut down is repairs and improvements, but locals claim the park had to shut down after a large number of accidental deaths on their rides.

Oh yes, that looks completely safe.

The reason the two versions circulate is because information on the park is virtually impossible to find. The only other information that can be discovered is that the park opened again in 1986 and stayed open for a good 13 years, at which point it closed down permanently.

Now it simply sits there, rusting in the middle of no where and being slowly hidden away by fog and trees. I say middle of no where because I cannot give an exact location. The park can no longer be found on a map. Anywhere. People of the area just pretend it's not there.

If you're still willing to try and locate this place, bear this in mind. To get there, you take Highway 4 north for about an hour, then take a left before the train station in Hobara. Also, you take Highway 4 from Fukushima, whose nuclear power plant had a meltdown after the powerful tsunami that hit Japan, and radiation swept over the park as a result.

Rust, creepy trees, fog, and radiation. Yeah, I think I'll go to Disneyland, thanks.

The Manananggal

Besides having a mouthful for a name, the manananggal, also from the Philippines, is a very strange creature indeed. During the day, she appears every part a normal-looking lady. By night however, especially during a full moon, something disturbing happens. She grows fangs, long claws, huge leathery wings sprout on her back, and most disturbing of all, her upper body separates from her lower half with her guts hanging out.

This lady beast, like every other creature here, eats humans, chowing down on all the vitals of the chest. She seems to especially favor pregnant women. When night falls, she flies to rooftops, looking for those with weak points she can take advantage of. Once locating one, her long, thin, needlesharp tongue slides in through whatever gap or break she found, and pierce her victim with it, draining blood from their body. If her victim was pregnant she would feed on the unborn child. Eating unborn children extends the life of a manananggal.

The only known way to kill such a creature is once the upper body detaches, if the lower half can be found, then one has to sprinkle salt or crushed garlic onto it, causing it to burn. This doesn't kill the upper half, but it prevents it from taking on its human guise, forcing it to hide in shadows at night, or risk burning in the sun.

So rather than having a pretty lady wandering around town during the day, we'll now have a pissed off flying torso looking for more people to eat out of spite... lovely.

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

The Wendigo

This particular beastie comes from my homeland, Canada, and the Northern States, a creature of Algonquian folklore.

The Wendigo creature appearing in the tales of the Algonquian people. It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit that humans eventually changed into after having to resort to cannibalism after being stranded in the harsh cold for too long.

They are strongly associated with the Winter, the North, and coldness, as well as with famine and starvation. They are disturbing looking creatures, featuring a skeleton-like body with the bones pushing out on its dried out ash gray skin, much like that of a corpse, sunken eyes, if not glowing hollow sockets, dried bloody lips, sharp yellow fangs and long slimy tongues. Some versions claim the creature is made entirely out of ice, with long, nasty claws that it uses to slice up its prey to more easily devour the entrails.

Wendigos represent gluttony and greed; never satisfied by eating one person, they are constantly hunting for their next meal.

Wendigos are said to be giant, usually fifteen feet tall. Whenever a Wendigo ate someone, it would grow larger, so that it could never sate its hunger. Wendigos are therefore constantly gorging themselves and constantly starving.

Proof that you don't have to go too far from home to be too freaked out to go in the woods!

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

Teke Teke

Something tells me a vast amount of my posts are going to include Japan origins.

Teke Teke is the ghost of a Japanese schoolgirl who wanders the train stations of Japan. In life, this girl was a shy, easily spooked girl, and other students often played jokes on her. One day at the train station after school, her friends decided to put a cicada, a bug that appears in the summer in Japan, on her shoulder.

Things did not go as planned.

She was so scared by the bug that she fell off of the platform and was hit by a shinkansen (The fastest train in Japan). Her body was cleaved in two at the waist. Now she is haunting the train stations of Japan, dragging herself with her elbows and sometimes her hands.

She is known to kill people with a scythe and split people in half with the same brutal speed of the Shinkansen to make her victims feel her pain. Another version says she pushes those she sneaks up on onto the tracks to be run over themselves. Her name is “Teke Teke” because that is how the noise she makes as she drags herself around by her hands is described.

I'm not sure which is more terrifying, a murdering torso, or a torso that can wield a heavy scythe with one hand...

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

The Tiyanak

This creature, which makes me rethink parenthood, comes to us from the Philippines.

The Tiyanak (also Tianak or Tianac) is a vampiric creature in Philippine mythology that takes the form of an infant or child, usually a newborn baby and cries like one in the jungle to attract sympathetic passerybys. Once it is picked up by the unsuspecting victim, it reverts to its true form and attacks. The tiyanak is also said to take delight in leading travelers into the jungle with their cries until they're hopelessly lost.

While different legends have different versions, the stories all share the details of it taking the shape of a young child or infant, and crying and wailing desperately for help. Some versions even say it keeps it's form of a baby, but develops fangs and claws before it attacks, which is even more unsettling.

The 'true form' tends to vary a bit more. Some versions say it takes the form of a little old man with wrinkled skin, a long beard and mustache, a flat nose and eyes the size of small coins.

Other versions say that it can fly, in the infant form, or will transform into a black bird before flying off.

Regardless of what its true form looks like, considering the only way you can survive such an encounter is to ignore the sound of a baby wailing its little heart out, a sound which is claimed to be one of the most heartbreaking, upsetting sounds to endure, this creature is definitely not high on the 'Have to See it!' list.

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

Slit Mouth Woman (Kuchisake-Onna)

This particular creature hails from the lovely island of Japan.

In Japanese mythology, Kuchisake-onna ("Slit-Mouth Woman") is a woman who is mutilated and killed by a jealous husband or lover, and returns as a furious spirit bent on spreading her pain.

It began in the Edo period, with the woman initially covering her face with her kimono sleeve, but has since been updated to a surgical mask, which, unfortunately for anyone walking home at night, is a common sight in Japan.

The woman will stop someone, usually a child for some reason, and ask, 'Am I beautiful?' If the person or child answers no, they are killed with a pair of scissors which the woman carries. If they answer yes, the woman pulls away the mask, revealing her mouth is slit from ear to ear and asks 'Even like this?'. If they answer no, he/she will be cut in half. If he/she answers yes, then she will slit his/her mouth like hers.

The modern version showed up in the seventies, and came along with ways to escape if she showed.

When she asks you, you must say that she is pretty two times in a row, so that she will become confused and her victim can escape while she is lost in thought.

When she asks, rather than yes or no, answer, "You are average." Unsure of what to do, she will give you enough time to escape.
Another escape route is to tell her you have a previous engagement; she will pardon her manners and excuse herself from your presence.

One other way is to ask her if you are pretty, she will get confused and leave.

There are also variations on why her mouth is cut. Some say that her slit mouth is the result of plastic surgery that went horribly wrong. Others say that she was injured in a terrible car crash. Some even believe she is an escaped mental patient who was so demented that she cut her own mouth apart.

Suddenly, the latest adaptation of the Joker doesn't seem all that ridiculous...

And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

The Black Eyed Kid (BEK)

A lot of people are familiar with these guys, if only because of the movie The Grudge. However, there's a less known tale circling around the world.

The stories surrounding black eyed kids always have a few common elements. There are usually two of them, one in their early teens and one several years younger, around eight or nine.

They seem to show themselves to someone when they're alone, be it walking home or sitting home alone in the evening. Upon seeing said children, the person always reports a feeling of dread or unease, even if they have yet to see the children's eyes.

The children, after either staring at their feet, or staring at you with a disturbingly pitch black set of eyes, will make a request, be it to use a phone or be escorted somewhere, or if you are home, to come in and use the phone or bathroom.

It is unclear what will happen if you give in to any of their demands, as it seems no one yet has been foolish enough to say yes to any of their demands. A few variations also include the disturbing detail that some of these children have talons rather than toenails, and some say that at first the children are smiling, in a very unsettling way, and as their pleas go unanswered, the smiles slowly fade and the pleas quickly become demands, leading to windows rattling and doors being pounded on.

There are theories claiming these children to be demons, which, with entirely black eyes and talons for toe nails, is understandable, and there's even a story of a town in Romania, called Sighisoara, that was said to be built on the demand of a black eyed kid.

The town of Sighisoara is built overtop of a crossing of ley lines, or lines of power, which is rumoured to attract demonic creatures, which would explain why a black eyed child, if it is a demonic creature would make such a request.

The 'demon' was described as being a “black eyed child” – black eyed as in completely black, no white of the eye, simply pure blackness, and was a child of a local, adopted by a Roman settler.

Said Roman settler built a fort there, named “Castrum Sex”, which means “Fort Six” in Latin. The Citadel of Sighisoara was built later on, centuries after, around the walls of an old Roman fort which still has an inscription, “Castrum Sex” or “Fort Six” visible on it. The tablet stated the fort was completed in the year 66 A.D.

A town built on the order of a black eyed kid, home to a fort named Fort Six, that was finished in the year 66 A.D. Just a bit too unsettling to dismiss.

So, I round off this first post with this recommendation. If you are approached at night, or there is a knock at your door, and you find yourself staring down a child with pitch black eyes, do yourself a favor.


And as always, if any of you have tales or experiences of your own involving any of these beasties, please post said stories on the monsters' respective pages!!

Good Evening

Being obsessed with folklore and all things creepy, I have decided to start a blog collecting all the tales and stories I have found throughout the years, detailing the many stories I've come to learn, some true, some unproven but nonetheless unsettling. Some stories will focus on creatures, while others will focus on creepy, unsettling places, as a location can be just as scary as a monster!

These stories come from all over the world, as, one thing is true. No matter how creepy a legend or tale you have, it's almost assured someone else has one even creepier.

I encourage you readers to post tales of your own experiences with these monsters on their respective pages, to collect more lore and flesh these beasties out all the more!