House I was born.

How many of us believe that we are living in a world full of mysteries and unexplained paranormal occurrences where science refuses to entertainment?

What you are about to read may be hard to believe but they are true. Each of the experiences narrated in this article are stories happened exactly as they are described. Most are eerie and puzzling paranormal mysteries that only those who witnessed their occurrences can relate but they can’t explain why they happened?

In the house that I grew there was one room shrouded with mysteries. This is not a ghost story, but a true story that defies logic. Strange sightings, weird happenings, presence felt and few other eerie experiences with no logical explanation to justice their occurrences. Most of my uncles and aunties had their fair share of these weird experiences and I was no exception. The room was situated on the upper floor of the house and it was coloured in yellow. The inner wall and the inner parts of the windows were all coloured in yellow. This was the Yellow Room that had displayed some unexplained happenings to many of us living in the house.

The house in question is a two storey bungalow that stands on an area of almost one acre (picture as above) in land size. This house still stands until today but the surrounding landscape had since changed drastically. The house was built by my grandfather Abdul Hamid bin Hj. Taib (grandpa) after he was married to my grandmother Hamidah binti Hj. Andak (grandma). It is addressed as 25, Jalan Omri, Muar, Johor.

Muar town during my growing days was full of mystical tales. Quite often our lives were dominated by everything spiritual and we all believed them. As I grew older and older, in spite of exposing to many scientific theories accepted by our normal logical minds, things are constantly happening to outwit and even mystify me. These inexplicable happenings kept on rolling that I was so accustomed to just ignore them. Some are stories related to me by grandma, some from my uncles and aunties and of course few happenings witnessed only by me alone.

My late mother Kamariah was among the first to experience this phenomenon. According to grandma, one night while she was sitting on the ambin after dinner, my mother came running from upstairs surprising everyone at the living room. She told grandma that while she was lying in bed reading a book, the room light switched off by itself. Thinking that there could be something wrong with the bulb, she stood up to have a check when suddenly she heard the clicking sound of the switch and the light was on. Refusing to believe in any spiritual interference, she continued her reading. Minutes later it happened again but she refused to budge and kept on lying on the bed waiting for the light to be on again. When the light was still off, she stood up again to switch it on and before she could reach the switch, it clicked again and the light was on. Then she felt a presence behind her but as she looked back to find out, there wasn’t a soul at sight. Quietly she tiptoed towards the door and as she reached the exit, the light went off. That was the moment when she ran towards the stairs looking for grandma.

She was not the only one who experienced that peculiar experience. Her younger sister Rugayah (My auntie Mak Ru) had a similar experience with an added version. While she experienced the same occurrence, she later saw a transparent white figure moving towards one of the windows and disappeared into thin air.

All of us believed that there was a spiritual guardian of this yellow room what we Malays called as ‘Penunggu’. Although we would like to shun such idea as nonsensical, it would be difficult to explain of the many inexplicable happenings witnessed by almost everyone living in the house. Just few days before her death, grandma herself related to me of some peculiar things happened to her. The only person that never talk about this subject was grandpa because he seldom talked.

The room was quite spacious with a double bed taking the center position. By the side at the entrance was a wardrobe of ancient design which could easily turned antic if preserved. There are five windows and all these windows faced the secondary jungle besides the house where stood two big durian trees and a tall mango tree. A quarter of the room is oval in shape and at the center with its back facing the center window was once the dressing table with an oblong mirror. This room was only used when we had visitors staying for the night otherwise it would be empty throughout.

One evening, while I was watching the television which we just bought, I dozed off. The television was placed at the living room next to the yellow room. I was lying in bed watching the television with the entrance door wide opened. When I woke up it was dark and the television set was already off. Someone must have switched it off. Suddenly I realized I was inside this yellow room and I was alone and the entrance door closed. Honest to goodness, I was really scared because  I seldom spent the night alone upstairs. My auntie Mak Chu who stayed at the next room was already married and had moved out joining her husband. Nobody else was upstairs except me. I was scared even to stand up and run.

The night was still and I could hear the sound of the crickets. Even the sound of the water dripping near the bathroom which was quite a distance could be heard. I knew it was almost midnight because there wasn’t any more programs and the reason the television was off. The only thing that puzzled me was who switched it off and who closed the entrance door. Downstairs next to grandma’s room was a wall clock that would strike once at every fifteen minutes and every hourly it would strike the number of times of the hour when it reached the time.

I was already grown up and was accustomed to many mysteries surrounding the house. When I was younger I used to hear someone walking with the wooden sandal (terompah) outside just beside my bedroom. I was brave to open the window to find out and even went outside to investigate if there was any attempted burglary. On one occasion when I returned home alone well past midnight, I saw few branches of the mango tree next to the yellow room shaken vigorously with not a single blow of wind could be felt. On another occasion I heard someone calling my name. Thinking that it could be one of my two best friends calling me, I went out but no one was at sight. These happenings never drove me shivering to the bone as I was too accustomed with all these weird occasions. But on that night, I was extremely scared particularly when thinking I was ‘trapped’ inside the yellow room. A room not even the bravest among us dared to sleep alone.

Liked it or not I must leave the room. My mind began to plan few strategies and I had not many options. The only available solution was just to stand up, open the door and walk straight to the door leading to the staircase downstairs. Somehow I could not move, not even to lift a finger just like as though someone knew my inner thoughts. My eyes were still closed when suddenly I felt a presence. Within seconds I could feel a hairy hand gripping my neck that almost choked me. I struggled to free myself but to no avail and I could feel the grip stronger. Malays believe that by some recitation of relevant Quranic verses could be of help and I did that while still attempting to free myself. Then the grip went off and I immediately jumped off the bed and went straight to the entrance door. When it was opened, I ran straight to the staircase and headed for my bedroom downstairs. I could not sleep but I was relieved to be out of the yellow room. The next morning I told grandma of the incident and she just told me that it was quite normal for such thing to happen in the yellow room.

One day two of my uncles happened to be at home. Mahmood Abdul Hamid (Wak Mod) was the sixth child among his siblings of fourteen. His younger brother Ibrahim Abdul Hamid (Wak Yem) happened to be at home and while they were both talking about many things, they decided to sleep at the yellow room together and to find out if any peculiar thing may happened.

Wak Mod was very fond of making practical jokes and would often scare us with his witty ghostly impersonation. During one midnight movie we watched together with our maid-servant Mak Yang, Kak Shidah noticed some leaves burning at one of the branches of a mango tree besides our house. We were only about few yards away before reaching the tembok of the house. When she alerted all of us, we were stunned and stood still just gazing at the burning leaves. All of us were terribly scared and did not know what to do. When the fire died off, Wak Mod appeared from the other side of the house and we immediately ran towards him. We asked him about the fire but he swore he knew nothing about the burning leaves and told us it could be the works of some naughty ghosts. Later we learned that he was the one who did the trick. On another occasion, he came down one night and joined us at the long wooden bench we used to sit. While we were talking, suddenly his eyes turned weird and stared at all of us without talking. We called his name but he kept his silence and just stared at us. All of us ran inside the house and later when we decided to have a look at him, he was gone.

It was almost midnight when both Wak Mod and Wak Yem entered the yellow room. When they lay down on the bed, Wak Yem could not sleep while Wak Mod was already snoring. Minutes later the snoring stopped and so Wak Yem thought maybe Wak Mod was still in his slumber. When he looked at him, he saw Wak Mod smiling with his eyes wide opened staring at the ceiling making Wak Yem scared to the bone. What a naughty fellow Wak Mod was but no matter how mischievous he could be, we nephews and nieces loved him very much.

One morning while we were having breakfast, Wak Mod came down looking very haggard. He told us that he had a tough time wrestling with someone he could not see. We thought it was just another of his witty tricks, but he swore this time it was for real. Maybe the spirit thought that this guy was too naughty and should be given a good lesson.

I have experienced quite a number of eerie feelings whenever I was in this yellow room but nothing can compare on one evening when I wanted to look for something at the wardrobe. The wardrobe was placed at the wall besides the bed. Suddenly I saw a moving shadow on the wall and when I looked behind me, there was no one. Without wasting a single moment, I dashed out of the room and jumped from the stairs to the bottom only to feel the pain later.  That was perhaps the last time I entered the room alone.

It was in 1977 when I came back home to visit the family of my auntie Azizah Abdul Hamid (Mak Jah) who had since been staying at the house. I brought along my wife and our first child who was almost a year old. Mak Jah invited us to sleep at the yellow room but I told nothing to my wife about this particular room. The next morning she complained to me that she could not sleep the whole night. She felt that someone was standing at the window staring at her the whole night. When I told her about the room, she swore that she would never sleep in that room again if ever we pay Mak Jah another visit.

Why did such things happen in that room while other rooms were being spared? Was there a spiritual being residing and acting as the guardian of the room and if so then why? It is almost thirty five years ago when I last slept in this room when my wife experienced that weird feeling. The house still stands until today but I wonder whether the room that was once coloured in yellow still display some peculiar occurrences to those happened to be in the room during the night?

How could I disbelieve in such things when I have personally experienced them? We are living in a world of science and technology where such nonsenses have no place. But no matter how much science wishes to disapprove of such events, I cannot simply disapprove them not until when science could give me some hints that such occurrences are results of our own doing. I tried to comprehend but I simply can’t.

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2 Responses to THE YELLOW ROOM

  1. Halida De Ste Croix says:

    I believed everything you wrote about ‘penunggu’ because I experienced a few times myself at my grandad’s. I remembered that ‘yellow house’. I used to cycled with my cousins from Jalan Khalidi passed the house to visit our best friend who lived at the bottom of Jalan Omri. I believed my granddad house got one, its in his room!.My grandad window always shut even during day time. No one is allowed to go to his room without his permission. I remembered one day when I was 17 years old, during day time he asked me to get his towel , I can feel that someone is watching me, the next minute I swears that someone blows my neck. It’s was very strange that my grandad told me do no turn on the light. Whenever I passed my grandad room afterwards I never walk slowly , always ran and even scared to look at his bedroom door . When my parents went to Mecca, I stayed for a month with my granddad. Lots of unexplain things happening. My aunty who lived with him never said anything , always told us off if we asked anything sounds like she is keeping a secret up till now. When my grandad passad away they put his body in his room, all his grand childrens was asked to go to his room to pay last respect, I didn’t go, that’s how scared I was with that room . The house is still there, unoccupied because my eldest aunty is old and now lived with her daughter at Sungai Abong .

  2. Harith says:

    I have yet to come face to face with something ghostly but there was one particular incident one night…but that too was after watching one Dracula movie. In those days stories on ghost and vampires are quite scary…and after watching it I cannot sleep the whole night, the very same night…I can hear strange sounds around me and I was sweating and shivering for hours with no one that can help me overcome the feeling of fear.
    My wooden house too was somekind of big (enough for roughly 15 occupants to stay at any one time) and looks eerie from the outside and there was this one particular room designated for my eldest sister and it was also on top of the ceiling of this particular room that we have ‘placed something’ – prepared by one bomoh to lock off evil spirits.
    No one dared to open the pot (in fact there was two) made of clay and lying idle there for so many years – everyone believe that it was of help. Sometimes when I get bored, I would climb up on top and stayed on top of the ceiling as my place of hiding (when I did something wrong that angers my Mum) and I will stay there for hours.
    The pots was there for easily about 10 years until one day my mum asked me to remove it – there was nothing insdie except for few pieces of dried leaves….an notthing happened even without the pots on it

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