Sunday, April 13, 2008

The Burned Lady of Ala Moana

During my one year education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UH), my friends and I shared one evening we will never forget. After a late night party, my friends and I took to the streets to ride the bus back to our dorms. Little did we know the bus had already made it's final destination that evening and we would be forced to walk 2 miles back to UH. Passing the Ala Moana Center we watched all the homeless people being swept out of the mall and into the parking structure. They all made weird mumbling sounds that echoed our first quarter mile walk. As soon as we cleared the mall and hit a curb to walk up King Street, I noticed a woman sitting at the bus stop. She sat there looking as if the bus was just about to pick her up. Fact is, the busses all stopped running an hour ago. At this point I got chicken skin. Walking towards her, I positioned myself between my friends as we passed her by. I remember taking a quick glimpse of the woman. At first she looked okay, until I noticed that the other side of her face was completely burned. I mean, this burn ran completely equal to half of her face. She made no sound, nor did she even acknowledge us. For about 20 minutes not one of us said a word. I couldn't stand it anymore and asked if everyone saw what I saw. They all said, "Yeah. We saw um."
Till this day I am unsure if we either saw a ghost or someone who was mentally ill and unfairly brutalized. Honestly, I am too afraid to explore this issue any deeper. From that moment on, we all made sure we either went to a party nearby, had a ride home or left early to catch a bus. Oahu is a beautiful place. It's the area where shadows are casted that makes it so damn scary.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I read about this story in your interview posted over at Erratic Phenomena. When I'm in hawaii I don't know how to describe it but I somehow get a little spooked at night sometimes. Makes me feel like a little kid again for a moment... anyways, I don't know if you'll read this but I just wanted to say that I idolize you and your artwork. I feel a connection with a story every time I see any of your paintings, I don't know super many artists whose work comes off to me like that. You should have a show near pasadena/la. I would die ^^