One of my elder brother’s favorite things to do was play his handmade guitar in the front yard at night. He was very good at it and my mum and I would sing along while sitting in the house. We lived in a township where there was no electricity, so Elder Brother (EB) would be having his one-man orchestra in the dark. At this time my father used to work in the capital city, so it was just the three of us at home.
One day EB was playing his guitar as usual when we heard him shriek and come crushing into the house. He ran straight to mum, sat down very close to her on the sofa and grabbed her by the waist. EB was shaking and could hardly speak. He freaked me out and I, too, went to sit with mum and hold to her for dear life. EB freaked us out!
Mum: What is it, my son?
EB: Ghost, ghost…….
Mum: Ghost? What ghost?
EB: I saw a ghost when I was standing outside.
Me: You saw a ghost?!!!?
EB: Yes, and it was wearing a white jacket.
Mum said some soothing words and sounds, but EB would not be calmed down. The story about a white-jacketed ghost freaked me out some more. We went to bed later and I promptly fell asleep, what with the ghost excitement. I was woken from my sleep by some footsteps – it was EB headed for my mother’s bedroom to sleep with her because he was afraid. Being afraid is contagious, so I got scared as well and followed EB to mum’s room. EB was already in bed with mum in his over blanket. I joined them in bed with my own blanket. As I was drifting off to sleep, I heard EB say:
EB: Mum, can I join you in your blanket?
Mum: Of course, here….
EB (after a short while): Mum, I am very afraid. Can I hold you?
Mum: Of course, son.
That is how my mother and EB spent that night – in each other’s arms. OK, I was scared but not that scared – I stuck with my own blanket. We never brought up the ghost story because who would want to be shamed with such a story? Ah, I have fond memories of EB.