With it being Friday the 13th, we thought it would be a good time to share a Malagasy ghost story with you. Gather around the campfire and enjoy...
In a recent project planning meeting, one member of the leadership team mentioned that they were afraid of both flying and sharks. Flying was an inventiable part of getting to Madagascar, and sharks are quite common around the Mozambique Channel (in fact, there are parts you are not allowed to swim in because of sharks coming up from South Africa). Their other fear is ghosts, but they said as long as there were no ghosts, they would be alright. Then, Father Alfredo, who is from Madagascar and is helping to organize the logistics of the project, smiled and laughed a very mischievous laugh. He told the following story...
During the time of French colonization, the French governor and his family lived in a mansion in Antananarivo. When the Malagasy started to revolt in order to reclaim their country, the story goes that a large group of people stormed the house and killed the governor and his entire family. Wife, children and all.
They say that there is a particular mirror in the mansion that, if you look into it, you can see the face of one of the family members peering into the mirror over your shoulder. however, when you whip your head aroud to see them, they would be gone. They were only ever visible when you were looking into this mirror.
Years went by where visitors, tourists and adventure seekers would test this: looking into the mirror, seeing someone peering over their shoulder and whipping around as quickly as they could to try and see this person before they vanished. Until one day when a group of researchers - ghost hunters really - decided that they would document this. Everyone they spoke to in Madagascar warned them not to film anything, especially not the mirror. But, in they went, ready to spend the night searching for evidence of paranormal activity.
The next morning, they did not emerge from the mansion. People went in to check the building, assuming the researchers had left in the middle of the night, too afraid to continue the search. Instead, what they found, they could not have imagined. The researchers were all still there, but they were all dead. They had had their heads turned so violently around that they were facing the opposite direction, all of their necks were broken. They were found with all of their video equipment...right in front of the mirror.
When word of what happened got out, the government immediately boarded up the haunted house and no one has ever been allowed in since. Whether you believe this or not, flying to Madagascar sure seems a lot less frightening now.