Ghost Subsidy

「我不怕鬼。」我說。「我怕的都是很現實的東西。」
「那你怕什麽?」她問。
「我怕時間不夠。我怕時間會到,然後想做的還做不到。」

“I am not afraid of ghosts.” I said. “In fact, if I were afraid of ghosts, it would be a luxury.”
“What are you afraid of?” She asked.
“I am afraid that there will not be enough time – that the end will come, and there will be things left undone.”

「 其實,我有點想看得到鬼。」
「為什麽?」
「因為我最近覺得我生活於人造的還境。東西有點太容易預測。如果我能認為這個世界不只人世間的東西的話,我會覺得人生比較精彩。」

I chatted with a friend:

Me: i wish i could see them!
H: I used to, When I was little. Now I just know they are there
Me: really! you never told me
H: Yeah. I can hear them to when I allow it. Always been like this
Me: that’s interesting. I’ve never tried listening
H: ☺ Maybe you shouldn’t
Me: you don’t recommend it?
H: If you open that door it’s hard to close it

In my neighborhood there are many funeral homes. I have never felt any bad energy from them. Actually, my rent is cheaper than usual for a place of this size in Taipei. The reason is that Taiwanese believe in ghosts, and this results in roughly a 20% discount on my rent. Or, I can think if it as the ghosts subsidizing 20% of my rent.

This makes the ghosts feel very close, and I am thankful, rather than fearful. It as if I have invisible helpers. Yet, with this feeling of gratitude, it feels like I opened that door a crack. When I showered that night, it was as I usually do this season, with only the night light on and with cold water. The yellow sodium lamp from outside provides more light. I felt a presence. I looked. It was only my shadow, cast by the street lamp outside against the shower curtain. Funny that I had never noticed my shadow cast that way before. I breathed, and said a silent “thank you” inside. If there are spirits, I am thankful that they are subsidize my rent, and that we live together so well.

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