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Hungry Ghost Festival
By: Anonymous Story Submission

For those who are unfamiliar with the Chinese culture, the Hungry Ghost Festival falls on the 7th month of the lunar calendar. It is the month where all the ghosts are released from Hell, like a spring break. So as tradition goes, every start of the 7th month, we will prepare offerings like rice, roast pork and tea to fill their hunger. And we will burn incense for ‘them’ so that they will not cause us any trouble.

A few nights ago, i decided to help my mom with the ritual before i go for my party. We laid out the offerings by the roadside and lit 2 red candles by the sides like the usual alter. We took out 3 sticks of incense, light it and i prayed my safety on the road cause i just bought my car not long ago. After which, i leaned forward and plant the joss sticks into the ground. And as i was trying to get back up, i saw a dark shadow at the corner of my eye. The moment i turned towards my left, the shadow swirled and vanished. This happened in less than 2 seconds. I wasn’t SCARED scared but i did have a bit of a HUH!? in my heart silently maybe cause it was too fast to register. I decided that it MUST be my shadow cause I’m standing under the lamp post and stop my thoughts from running wild.

Few hours and a couple of shots later, i was pretty tipsy but i still managed to drive. There were 6 of us and my friend’s place is like 5 mins away from where we were, so i thought I’ll take the risk to drop them off. OF ALL DAYS, i did a wrong turn and landed myself on this road towards a police road block.

(Drink driving is a serious offence in Singapore. Penalty is usually a compound of of $3000 – $5000 and revocation of the driving license plus a 2 year suspension. Maybe even be sentenced to a jail term.)

As we move closer towards the police stop, they took the breathalyser test on all the drivers in front of me. Everyone in the car started to panic. I kept repeating in my head that “I’m going to die! I’m going to fail the breathalyzer test. I’m screwed!” and tried my best to look sober and less worried. When it was my turn, the police took a look at me, and gave me the signal to drive through.

I couldn’t explain how god damn relieved i was! But then again, the police was just right in front of me, how could he not see that we have 6 people in the car? Was i really that lucky? Or was it Gui Zhe Yan (ghost covered his eyes)?

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