I would say that I have a healthy fascination in the paranormal, I think that there are some phenomena that even science can’t explain in spite of modern man’s attempts to rationalize them. I already spoke about my love for Lore and I am a shameless Coast to Coast AM listener because I want to believe that there’s some mystery to our existence. Are some people just delusional? Absolutely. Do I still believe that skinwalkers walk the desert? Uh, absolutely – storytime.
I grew up in southwest Colorado, I spent a lot of time camping and hiking around Arizona and New Mexico as a kid. The Navajo, Zuni, Acoma, Ute Mountain Ute and Southern Ute reservations are all located within the Four Corners region. Given the close proximity to all of their rich culture and historical sites, I grew up immersed in the stories, art and customs of the natives. It was pretty awesome and I’ll always appreciate that part of my youth. I’ll also always be terrified of driving through the desert at night because of death by skinwalker. What’s a skinwalker you ask? Skinwalkers are based in Navajo lore and taken pretty seriously, it’s believed that even speaking about these abominations can draw their attention to you. It’s a flesh eating, murderous, medicine man gone bad who will use his magic to end you even if you are blazing down the highway in a school bus.
It’s 2 AM (or some time in the middle of the night) and our volleyball team was trekking back to Colorado from somewhere near Albuquerque, New Mexico. I went to a really small school so we had to play other really small schools which meant traveling for hours through isolated locales in a suburban. You can’t sleep on a suburban with 12 other girls so naturally, we’re all just staring out the window at nothing. Until something came out of the nothing looking like an upright coyote. I shit you not, we all panicked even the bus driver screamed and he was a pretty button-downed guy who didn’t take any bullshit so you know that there was reason to panic. Given the speed that we were traveling, there was no way he wasn’t going to cream this thing but after we finally came to a screeching halt and he got out to further inspect, there was nothing there. Literally nothing, the night was completely still. I felt as though we and every creature in the vicinity knew on some primordial level that there was something unnatural afoot. I mean, what else besides a shapeshiftng monster could get a gaggle of teenage girls to shut their yaps? Our volleyball coach who was Southern Ute insisted that it was skinwalker and though the bus driver rebuffed her, we did about 80 the rest of the way out of that desert.
To this day, you can’t tell me or anyone on that suburban that skinwalkers don’t exist and though I never felt afraid of being in the desert in my youth, I don’t seek out a lot of opportunities to be out there again. I’d love to hear about urban legends that you grew up with or may have even encountered. Do you think there’s something to the folklore or is it just a bunch of hocus pocus 😛