The Most Scary Story!
The Most Scary Story!
The Story of The Jinns!
July 4, 2014
It has been a long time since I wrote any article here under Short Takes! Omani Theme – but further my – https://myshorttakes.com/2014/03/04/are-you-afraid/ – I thought of throwing a sequel of missed episodes here. The idea came into mind after reading these series of articles about Zanzibar in the local English daily. I thought to myself why write on things people already know? Or things easily accessible in a Google search! Why not write on something strange and abnormal (paranormal) instead? Anyway, I envy the guy – I wished someone had sent me for a similar paid in advance assignment to write something linked to Oman – and after a series of articles sent – could enjoy a nice holiday in addition!
It reminded me of Mafia Island a.k.a. Chole Island as the Locals called it – before the knowledgeable Arabs came from Oman and named the Island as Mafiha – that is in Arabic ‘there is nothing here’ – the locals found it easier to call it without the h inside – which went silent! The reasons that the Omani Arabs called it ‘as the island without’ was because they were comparing it to other places – like Zanzibar’s Unguja and Pemba – and the city of Dar es Salaam – the commercial and port city of Tanzania!
Built by my name sake Sultan Majid bin Said – and the examiner must have a field day to have marked my History exam – when the first question in the paper was – Who built the city of Dar es Salaam (Port of Peace!) – And the evil taunting side of me wanted to say – It was I! So what if you get one answer wrong – if you get the rest right – I ask you! But then the good side stepped in cautioning that you may upset the Examiner by ‘such a silly provoking answer’ – and he or she decide to fail you by upsetting him or her! J !
The island of Mafia is about 100 miles from the city of Dar es Salaam – is about 36 miles long at full length points – and 24 miles wide at its widest points! Its peoples (originals) are 90% Muslim Africans – and the rest are Mainlanders (mainly Christian as Public Servants, Hotel Staff, and Police etc.)!
The Swahili they speak is more Bantu Swahili – with a few words in Arabic – opposite to the Classical one with lots of Arabic words in – and the dialect is the same like in Pemba. Like us Arabs have an issue and problem of pronouncing ‘P’ – they similarly have with M – thus Mkate (bread) they pronounce Nkate – Mchanga (sand, young) they pronounce Nchanga! Like Pemba and Unguja in Zanzibar – there are a lot of Jinn (Ghost, Paranormal) stories in the island – which I will share with you today!
However, trust M! – To wander off before coming to the point – but that is how my writing style is – and has always been! As similar is of the other angle – of I will take you to the bridge – and then let you decide for yourself if you want to cross the bridge – or decide to return after reading my article – with the success or not – of the persuasion skill on board – or not! Or as some of my Apologists may say too – anyway even in wandering off – we still learn something new from him!
Please read this with https://myshorttakes.com/2014/03/04/are-you-afraid/ on board!
A – The Singing Jinn Lady!
Boys will be boys! As young boys – we heard of the story of this pretty ‘Arab Lady’ with long hair – and singing Arabic songs as she combed her long hair! The joke went that she sang songs of Um Kuthum, Ferouz and of Faiza Ahmed! When they were debating naming of our youngest sister it was I that chose Faiza for her – after it was established that someone had chitted on the drawing of names – by one writing than once! The name of Ghaniya (Singer!) came up but our late mother was not happy of her daughter being teased instead in Swahili equivalent of Mwimbaaji – and this nickname would have stuck – instead of her real name!
Singer it was not – but the quest and hunt for the Singing Lady was still on! The big house was haunted and belonged to two brothers of Shirazi (Iranian) descendancy! They were notorious – God Forgive us in Ramadhan – of being miserly stingers – and as they were rich – they lent out money at exorbitant rates and charges! Say if you took 100 OMR – you would pay only interests
At OMR 5 per month – so if you delayed paying the principal amount after 20 months – you will end paying double the amount! This is how the money traffickers profited and survived! If you complain – they throw the question back to you – who is borrowing? Me or you! Anyway and anyhow – that is how the cookie crumbled!
So us boys sneaked to the haunted house to get a peak review of inside! There was a kerosene lantern on – there was no electricity utility at the time! And yes trust me – the most beautiful woman that you ever saw was there right in front of our eyes – combing her long black hair – and singing at the same time! You could feel that she knew she was being watched by young adolescent curious penetrating eyes – and she did not care! Sure enough she was singing this famous Faiza Ahmed song – and it vibrated through the walls and the window!
The story was that she was the Jinn wife of one of the brothers – though some were that mean to say that both brothers shared the Jinn wife! Then all of a sudden she stopped singing! One of the brothers came to close the curtains – and we were wondering whether we had been found out or not – when this ferocious looking big dog started barking at us – and we ran like mad away from the house! Our late uncle – who had heard of the story – was teasing and tormenting us – that Jinns like to take the shape of ‘dogs and snakes’ to scare way intruders – and you ‘are lucky the dog did not bite you – otherwise you would have ended mad – or dead! Trust that after this episode we never went eavesdropping or Jinn hunting anymore! You too would be scared – would you not?
B – A Jinn Wife For Me!
One night yours truly with my brothers – was hearing these Jinn stories from our long time serving house boy – Said Kifupi – SK – Said Shorty – SS – the short man! He liked to scare us quite a lot – and he had so many stories – and I do believe that he was making some of them up as he saw the fear elements from his audience. For a short man – he was a good narrator per se! I do not know why our late Father did not like him – and many times he was saved his job by us begging our father ‘not to fire him’. He had the knack of breaking plates – as he went about narrating his Jinn stories!
My late Father always cautioned us on two kinds of people to be afraid of in life – one is a short person (was it the houseboy or a business partner he always fought with?) and the second person is ‘a thin man’ who never gets fat – even if he ate a full cow – with the tail and head included! Personally I think he was referring to one of my late uncles – who Allah be Blessed had a very good appetite – and he could eat the whole Eid big plate by himself! You wondered where the food went – because his stomach remained as it was always – and he was always thin and skinny too!
So SK a.k.a. SS was teasing and joking me! He turned to me and said – you are now in puberty! Wish for a Jinn wife! So I asked him why? So he retorted – you can have her in any way you wanted – she can change and come in different formats (human shapes). At that time I had seen some films and some magazines – and imagined of her coming as Sophia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor, the lady in Dr. No James Bond film (Britt Elkland? Fasting forgot the name!) – But I liked best – was Natalie Cole – my favourite! My wish was if I go to heaven and meet her – but that is another story for now! Let us concentrate on this one – for now!
So SK said to me – before you go to sleep ‘wish for a Jinn’ wife! Late at night – this is real stuff! – I went screaming out loud – and both our parents came to the room asking ‘what was the matter?’ Then I screamed out that a beautiful damsel – this is creepy even now! – Was calling me from the window – Husband – here I have come! You wanted me – and here I have come! My apologist mother was saying to me it was a nightmare – because as I like my food – I had eaten too much – and soon went to sleep!
My late father – who called ‘a spade as a spade’ scolded us for listening to stupid Jinnie talks from SK! Next day I told SK – and he just went – See I told you! Trust me – as a growing up adolescent boy that was the last of my wishing for a Jinnie wife! The irony was she called me out in Arabic – so it was an Arabic one! To the day till my father passed away – whenever I complained about the ‘good wife’ – my father rebuked me – you wanted a Jinnie wife – she came as a human being in another format! So stop complaining! (Unsaid!).
C – The Chained Jinn!
I believe what we are told about the month of Ramadhan of bad spirits being chained. This houseboy of ours in our Wayani farm in another part of town – was having Suhoor (last food before fasting) when as he returned to our farm from Kirongwe – a near village – he saw this very tall – really tall! – Figure in white dress – dragging broken chains – and crying out loud in Arabic – words as an African he could not understand – and he ran back to the village screaming – and waking up everyone readying themselves for fasting. Next day he quit – I cannot work for this Arab anymore! The Jinn had red eyes – and was actually starring (hot) at him!
D – From The Top Of The Hill!
The Port Road was a steep road down to the Harbour. It was a ‘familiar frequented Jinn spot’. As always at night – the same story went – there was this tall beautiful pretty Arab lady! She was singing and ‘came on the man’ – but he was not sober enough not to entangle with them – leave them alone – and they will leave you alone! This night he was feeling particularly brave (sex starved?) and he spoke to her in Swahili – how about it?
She at first ignored his advances – but he would not give up! She spoke to him in Arabic! As an African he hardly knew any Arabic – except the Swahili words he knew originating from Arabic – with either a vowel at the start or the end! For example Magharib – dusk – and I is added – and it becomes Magharibi at the end! She said to him – okay if that is what you wish! I asked him how you knew it was Arabic – and how you could tell ‘she was now okay and coming on to you? He retorted – grow up! One day you will! Now you are just a teenager!
It took him more than 15 minutes’ walk up the steep hill. As he reached there he found the good lady Jinn waiting for him! How about it? – The lady Jinn said to ‘the lucky man’ – this time in plain Swahili – so there was no misunderstanding between them! How did you reach here so fast? – The man queried! You mean like this? – She replied! And she disappeared down the hill – waving from down! Here I am Bwana (Sir – Man!) – And as she reappeared up the hill! This went on for a few minutes – up and down the hill! The man ran to his room at the back of our house – he was working with us as our houseboy too! He was perspiring profusely – and his heart beating fast – when suddenly he screamed out the more – the most heinous panic cry that you ever heard in your life!
Because she was waiting for him in his room! How did you enter the room? He asked in panic! It is said that Jinns cannot open doors – they come through the walls! And that is how she did – teasing him all over again – inside the room – and re-entering! To the scrams – my father went to him – as we did! The next day he too quit – I cannot work for this Arab anymore!
E – Up The Tree!
This story is also confirmed by a good late friend of mine! But this happened in another island called Pemba! Also famous – if not more – of Jinn Ghost stories! This time it was the ‘lady doing the chasing’! My friend was so excited! She too ‘looked Arabic’! She said follow me – and she was leading up the stairs – and he following behind! They went through a lot of staircases – and when they reached the top there was this bedroom – with a big bed inside. I know it is Ramadhan – but I am typing this at night!
Then she said to him – wait here – whilst I go to make myself comfortable! I will cut out here the part not suitable for Ramadhan – even at night! As he lay waiting – after some time – dawn came in. As he sat where he was – he saw the local villagers pointing up at him – and asking him – Hey – what are you doing up the baobab tree? This tree is famous for these kind of things – and I can vouch for my late friend – PBUH – that he was always truthful and honest – at least to me!
F – Do Not Answer – Even If Calling Your Name!
We were stubborn youngsters – but our late Father brought us up the Omani ways, habits, customs and traditions! And that meant – stopping the football match – and return to the house inside as soon as dusk (Magharib) fell! Our late father used to call us our names – to come inside. This was at Mkunguni in Kilindoni where our big house was! These Mkunguni (Almond Trees) were also notorious for bad omens and Jinns – when I used to have a string of bad luck and misfortunes – my late father cut down the tree in my villa in Qorum Heights! For a reason too!
The local African boys used to mock us – Sorry for you! Your parents control and dominate you! We – we are free! We can play as long as we want outside! They will not call us inside – like they do to you! So sorry for you! Whether it was true – or boys being boys – making a stand and pretending – or even in rivalry and jealousy is another thing!
But trust me in this – even inside the house – we used to hear our names being called out – and in our father’s voice! So we told dad – someone is calling for us outside – Ignore and DO NOT ANSWER – stressed – because these are not Real people – and bad things can only happen to you – if you answer or go out! One of our cousins staying with us thought it ridiculous – and he went outside after his call to him! He was near death fighting for his life – till the Local (Arab) Sheikh came to make duas (prayers) for him – so there – if you believe me or not!
G – She Died Three Times!
This was an Indian lady – very kind hearted – who always looked after the poor Locals! She fell ill with just a fever and flu – not much of a big deal! However, she was pronounced dead – and she was in her room whilst ladies gathered at her house. Soon a terrified woman ran out – the deceased had come out from her room asking her what the commotion was all about? People rushed to her room! You guessed it! She was on her bed dead – even the Doctor confirmed it! Two more rounds went – Dead! No Alive! Now – the Third time! No – this time she was really dead! My late Mother was witness to these episodes – and The Truth is again being said here!
If these stories have not scared you – nothing else will! I hope you have enjoyed reading them! This took me 30 minutes to type – as I type slowly! But think fast! J !
Happy 4th of July Greetings to my American Fans – if any out there! At least to my books publishers in USA!
Majid Al Suleimany
Muscat – Sultanate of Oman.
July 4th 2014!