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Disrespectful of the Dead


Having lived most of my life on an island, I had the good fortune of being allowed to play outdoors even after sunset and do things a city-child wouldn't normally dream of. It's this sense of security that small places provide that make even the most protective parents less worried about and, of course, more tolerant towards a child's need for adventure.

For all the above, I spent all my restless childhood searching for buried treasures in the forests and cycling along the endless coasts of my Greek island looking for pirate ships( not that I found any).

And yet, from all my strange experiences, there's one which stands out to this very day, maybe because my blue coat is still hanging in my closet- in a far-away end.

Well, a good story-teller should start from the beginning so...

It was one of those days when a child wakes up feeling so energetic, almost naughty. I jumped out of bed, barely having the patience to have breakfast and ran to my bicycle while my poor mother was trying her best to remind me to be on time for lunch. Ten minutes later, and, having summoned the rest of the pack, we were cycling along the south coast of the harbour without a single plan in mind. We spent most of the morning and afternoon hours racing and teasing one another and then, tired as we were; we "camped" outside an old graveyard exchanging ghost stories from the past. Needless to say so much for lunch and our midday nap!

It must have been close to sun-set when Sophia (one of the oldest in the group) began telling a story that had supposedly taken place in that very abandoned graveyard. As the narration progressed, the less comfortable we all felt and every now and then we would turn round to check on the Iron Gate that stood as a barrier between us and the dead! I, personally, had the distinct feeling I was being watched but would hesitate to look closer in fear of ruining the reputation of being fearless!

Finally, the story ended with the dead bride claiming the life of her disloyal groom and my fearless friends having piled up in a corner, completely terrified! I could see Sophia feeling proud for the fright she had caused and, to this very day, I still wonder what came over me to so sarcastically utter "Right! And then what? She jumped back to the grave with an everlasting smile on her face-one that passer-by wanderers can detect even today?"

That, of course, initiated a whole riot among the pack, and as I should have guessed, Sophia challenged me to go check it out if I dare...

Why, just tell me why one gets to say the wrong thing at the wrong time? And as if that wasn't enough, there goes another suggestion, "and while you're at it, bring us some proof that you have actually been inside and not hidden behind the bushes or something..."

Right! Now I knew I was in deep trouble but I refused to let Sophia humiliate me and, despite my growing terror, I jumped over the old gate ignoring the chills I was feeling.

"And don't be too long because we might not wait!"

I can still hear my friends screaming, Sophia laughing and a voice in my head saying "don't, don't" but I walked on until I was far from sight and deep into the creepy wilderness. At that point, despite the foolishness of my youth, I felt awkward, knowing that I was trespassing. In my culture, we were taught to respect the dead and what I was doing was not respectful and yet, I would have rather died than have Sophia calling me a coward.

I recall walking among half-open or broken graves and I was overwhelmed by the feeling of abandonment when, all of a sudden, I detect an open grave-the tombstone was in pieces pilled up on the side of the hole. I stopped, whispered a prayer and tried to find my courage. I must have been there for quite a while because I suddenly realized it was gradually getting darker and darker, so, finally I stretched my arm in the interior until I touched something solid and pulled it out.

It was part of a human pelvis, worn off due to exposure to the sun and rain.

Being a little darker now and having accomplished my mission, I made my way for the gate once again but, to my surprise, everyone was gone but Sophia and Nickie. And they were obviously not happy with my success!

They inspected the bone and then said they would now have to go so they jumped back on their bikes and off they went leaving me baffled.

I was ready to throw the bone to the ground and run back behind them but, having realized I had been enough disrespectful for a day, I jumped back into the graveyard wishing to undo the wrong.

It took me ages to find the open grave again and when I did, I placed the bone back in and, this time in tears, set off for my way home feeling a taste of bitterness in my lips. "I shouldn't have done that, I should have just kept quiet," I thought.

Some time later I reached home and letting the bike fall to the ground (little did I care at that point) I opened our front door and stepped in to face my mother's wrath! There also goes dinner as you would have guessed. The only thing I still clearly remember about the rest of the evening was my mum yelling about me having destroyed my coat, a muddy coat that resembled what I was wearing that same day flashing in front of my eyes, and then, my bedroom door hitting me where the sun don't shine as mum shut it behind me!

I didn't get any sleep that night going over and over the whole day but sometime during the early hours I managed to close my eyes and let go of my worries.

"Have I ever broke into your house and disturbed your sleep? Have I ever misplaced your clothes?" The angry voice can still be heard in my head as I woke up from that terrible sleep soaking wet! At that, my door opened wide and my mum rushed in to hold me and tell me it had just been a dream. I fell asleep again.

It must have been ten in the morning when mum returned to my room to ask me what had happened to my coat. Thinking she was referring to the previous day I seemed reluctant to explain when I realized she meant that same morning.

"I washed the mud off last night and this morning... It was, I don't know, dusty again. Did you touch it again since last night?"

"No I didn't! But I did something stupid," I began saying as I broke into tears and went on to tell her about my little adventure and the disturbing dream I had.

She was unhappy about my revelation but then tried to sound firm while setting down some rules and, finally, reassuring that there was nothing to worry about as long as I did not do that again. That day I stayed indoors, not feeling up to anything.

The next morning though I was in for a rough awakening as mum came rushing into my room accompanied by my grandfather: "Did you touch the coat at all-we need to know the truth?"

And again I refused to having done such thing when, to my terror grandpa asked me to get up and take him to the old cemetery. I cannot describe my state of mind at that moment but, since they both refused to take no for an answer, I got up, dressed and showed him the way. On our way there he insisted on making sure that the voice in my dream had not told me his name and finally stopped the effort.

All that's left to say is, we were circling the interior of that lonely place attempting to find the opening from where I took the bone and then, the spot where I misplaced it but, to no avail. The whole did was done in the cover of darkness and finally my grandpa decided that the only way to ease the dead was to bring a priest and get him to read a prayer, with me present, of course.

As for the coat, despite my mum's frequent requests to throw it away, you can still find it to this day (twenty-two years later) hanging in the far away corner of my closet under which I have to vacuum every now and then.

Thank you for being patient,


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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, rhodes68, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

ghosthunter9876 (67 posts)
10 years ago (2011-12-12)
Hey you were very lucky not to be harmed for your adventure by spirit of the grave.
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
11 years ago (2010-08-04)
Thank you both Daniela and EmeraldAngel for your nice comments!
EmeraldAngel (4 stories) (319 posts)
11 years ago (2010-07-26)
Thats an amazing story, I'm glad you didn't just toss the bone and run. This is going in my favorites, Katherine
DanielaL (10 posts)
11 years ago (2010-07-26)
Holy crap! That's a really cool story... I wis I lived in Greece lol 😁
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-10-02)
Thank you ScorpioGirl for reading my experience and for your kind words. I know I was little and immature but I just hope that is also understood by the 'other side'.

Welcome to the site and hope you stay here with us for a long time!
ScorpioGirl (1 stories) (7 posts)
13 years ago (2008-10-02)
Hi Tammy,

I can tell in your writing style that this still bothers you, also keeping the coat is proof of that. As a child you did the right thing. It would have been terrifiying to go back in to try and return it to its rightful place. The disrespectful thing would have been if you had just chucked it back inside the Cemetery Gates and run off. At least you had the decency to try and return it. You have to make mistakes as a child before you can learn, same goes with Adults!

ScorpioGirl 😊
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-08-25)
Hi Vicki-it was my pleasure to publish your story and I sure hope there are more coming!

I thank YOU for reading my story and for your comment. I don't really know why I keep that coat but I believe it serves as a reminder to me. I feel that being disrespectful is worst than being ignorant. I should have never ever upset another soul's resting place as I wouldn't like to have my resting place disturbed in the future.

Thus, the coat stays there despite my mum's distress every time she lays eyes on it to function as a reminder and an apology to the spirit I offended.
Brownie09 (6 stories) (293 posts)
13 years ago (2008-08-24)
Hi Rhodes, that was one story I won't forget, and you still having that coat I have to say I would have thrown it away, I can't believe your friends done that to you and left you there by yourself to take it back. They are the ones who told you that they wanted proof, well they got their proof.

I also want to say thank you for publishing my story. 😊 ❤
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-16)
Hi Rebelboy-thanks for reading. Yes, the spot under which the coat hangs is dusty even today as if I had left the doors and windows open on a windy day. I no longer know if it's the coat or some other 'natural' explanation about it but I won't uncover the clothe to see what's causing the dust. No way!
Rebelboy1987 (9 stories) (186 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-15)
Thats really neat... Does it get dusty even now, more so than most of the other things in the closet?
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-14)
Thanks Trent for reading my story 😊

No, it was dusty again-she thought I had been messing with her but only when she saw her father's reaction did she come to realise I wasn't fooling around!
Rebelboy1987 (9 stories) (186 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-14)
That is a very interesting story... I like how you tried to undo your wrongs. I myself would have probably just thrown the bone down on the ground and went after my friends. That is, if I had the guts to go grab it in the first place. I have a question though. When your mom came and asked you the second time if you touched the coat, had it gotten dirty AGAIN, or was she just reconfirming that you hadn't touched it in the first place?
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-14)
Thank you patti, I appreciate it 😊.

I'll be looking forward to your encounters too!

Take care

bigpatti87 (2 stories) (39 posts)
13 years ago (2008-07-14)
Wow! That is truly crazy and I would have to say not to smart on a certain young girls part but hey, you live and you learn... And its good to keep a reminder sometimes to make sure you don't do it agian... I am happy that you can learn from that and move on... Great story love them all really... Keep writing and thanks for the comments.

God Bless,
BigPatti 😉
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-05-31)
Sagemizu thanks for reading my story and yes, you're absolutely right, it took me a while to find a balance between being naughty and being a complete fool.
sagemizu (30 posts)
13 years ago (2008-05-27)
All I know is just like respecting your elders you should respect those who've passed on as well. May they rest in peace.
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-04-21)
Isn't it amazing how different we tend to see the world when we are younger and much more naive? I suppose a child cannot see beyond its own point of view and realize the multiplicity of reality. We are arrogant when thinking that this beautiful world belongs to us and only us, we don't really understand the concept of physical death, let alone that we see everything as a large private playground that is here to serve our needs.

You're lucky to have such a perceptive mother;one who can help you distinguish between right and wrong and can teach you which values to seek. I don't know who she is but I've read your story Mama's helper and I was really touched by her sensitivity and, obviously, the love you two share.

Cherish her essiej.

Thank you for reading my story ❤
essiej (guest)
13 years ago (2008-04-21)
One time my Mama showed me a path that leads to a burial ground. She told me it was sacred and I was not to ever step foot in there or even walk down the path. I thought she was being a drama queen so a group of my friends, maybe four of us, went in there one day. There were lots of stuff hanging on sticks and somethings on the mounds of stones. We walked to the center and nothing happened to us, so we took a few of the stones. They were regular stones, nothing special, but we were going to show the kids at school that we were there. When we got to my house Mama stopped us at the door and sent us back. She said we did something, she wasn't sure what but we needed to make it right. We didn't. That night we all had nightmares. Mama found the stones and made me go back with her. My nighmares stopped, but the ones that kept theirs kept having them. Maybe a ghost won't come up and smack us, but I think he did the next best thing.
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-03-02)
Actually, after searching through my diaries (I still keep each one of them to this very day) I have found out that this event had taken place in 1978, that is I was 9 years old at that time and therefore it has not been 22 years as I claimed but 30. My god, I'm old! 😭
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-02-20)
Hi mustang and thanks for taking the time to read my stories. 😊
It must have been right after I had finished 4th grade so that should make me 9. You know, had you asked me to do that a couple of years later I would have thought you were joking. I suppose at that age I wasn't quite aware of the dangers and I knew nothing much about spirits other than we had to respect the dead,and, I wasn't even sure what that meant. And yet, for some reason I felt ashamed when I took the bone. I felt scared though, when I saw my grandfather's reaction!
Oh, I haven't stopped asking the dead for forgiveness and I may never will. I'm not a nasty person, you know. I was just ignorant.
mustang (5 stories) (749 posts)
13 years ago (2008-02-20)
Hello rhodes. I went to your profile to see what stories you've written in case I didn't read them and post a comment. I saw the title of this one and I went to to see if I posted, which I hadn't. I start to read the story and I remember that I DID read this and I don't know why I didn't post a comment. So here I am.

I can't believe you were brave enough to go in that creepy cemetary alone as a young girl let alone stick your hand in someone's grave and pull out a bone and then take it. You DID have a WILD childhood didn't you. I can't remember if you said exactly how old you were. How old were you when you did this? If I were you, I would have never stuck my hand in a grave! I bet you learned your lesson not to do that ever again. I believe I remember you asking for forgiveness, that was a good thing.

whitebuffalo (guest)
13 years ago (2008-02-04)
I believe to talk ill of the dead will only bring you strife. The act of taking something, I would assume would carry a heavier weight. It sounds as if you received a powerful message from the one Being that you would listen most to at that point in time.
Thank you.
Astral184 (1 stories) (53 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-30)
Well, I guess you learned a lesson, the best way, the hard way. I was told a long time ago, it is very bad to disrespect the dead, they have a right to RIP. Take care. 😐
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-29)
What did you do with the broken head stone Flutterofwings? Did you return it? I hesitate to ask what you mean by "didn't have peace'. Yes, I guess spirits don't appreciate our interference.
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-29)
Hey PX,

I'm not laughing cause I'm still uncertain as to whether I have been " forgiven" or not 😕.Seriously, I threw it in what seemed to be the proper spot only once and when I returned, we failed to find the open grave cause there were many in that condition in daylight.

Anyway, one thing is for sure. The priest would have gladly killed me if he could but knowing that to be a sin, he restrained himself! 😳
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-29)
Hi KimSouthO. That is just the point, I don't think or, at least, I'm not sure that the bone was ever returned to its resting place because first, it was a huge cemetary and I was wandering in there for quite some time, and secondly, it was a bit too dark when I foolishly got out of there the first time so when I returned with my granddad the second time, I had completely lost orientation. I hope by some accidental force that we returned it to its rightful owner!
PixieDot (1 stories) (5 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-28)
That is kind of freaky! How many times did you throw it away? Maybe the priest helped? 😕

KimSouthO (27 stories) (1960 posts)
13 years ago (2008-01-28)
Wow! What a fascinating story!
Amazing, isn't it? We often must learn these types of lessons the hard way. I must say, I did admire your bravery of taking the relic back after showing it to your friends. At least it did not stay misplaced and was returned to its rightful owner.

Thanks for sharing!
God Bless!
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
14 years ago (2008-01-27)
Thanks to all for your nice comments. It's comforting to know there's a site one can use to relate to others who don't doubt her state of mind!
I will come back with more experiences and look forward to reading more of yours. 😊
Bellissima (12 stories) (792 posts)
14 years ago (2008-01-27)
Hi rhodes68. It sounds like you had a fabulous childhood, the freedom sounds great! I guess you learned a valuable lesson that day, don't fool around when it comes to the paranormal. I'm glad you and your Grandfather got things resolved, what a relief. Thanks for sharing your story, I enjoyed it.

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